Monday, September 3, 2012

Mindanao CSOs endorse Sulu governor as sole ARMM gubernatorial bet

ZAMBOANGA CITY (Mindanao Examiner / Sept. 3, 2012) – An umbrella organization of civil society groups in Mindanao has endorsed the governor of Sulu province as the government’s official candidate to next year’s elections in the Muslim autonomous region.

The Movement for Sustainable Good Governance, whose members include at least 30 civil society organizations from the five-province Muslim autonomous region, passed a resolution and a manifesto endorsing Gov. Sakur Tan to President Benigno Aquino.

Tan, who recently joined Aquino’s Liberal Party along with other provincial governors and mayors, was earlier endorsed by the Moro National Liberation Front to the President as the official LP candidate for the elections in the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao.

The Muslim region is composed of Basilan, Sulu, Tawi-Tawi, Maguindanao and Lanao provinces, including the cities of Lamitan and Marawi.

“Gov. Sakur Tan has all the good qualities of a true leader and as representative of the Muslim people; we have endorsed the Sulu governor to be the official candidate of the Aquino administration to the upcoming ARMM elections in May.”

“The civil society organizations strongly support the leadership of Gov. Sakur Tan because of his genuine and untainted political career and sincerity to serve the people and bring peace, progress and development not only to Sulu province, but to the whole of the ARMM,” said Dr. Amildasa Annil, the leader convener and president of the Movement for Sustainable Good Governance.

The manifesto was passed following the 1st Zamboanga-Sulu-Tawi-Tawi CSO Summit held in Zamboanga City over the weekend. Some 300 CSO members from Basilan, Sulu, Tawi-Tawi, Maguindanao and Zamboanga City participated in the summit sponsored by two of the country’s largest sardine canning factories, the Mega Sardines and Amadeo Fishing Corporation.

“We, the undersigned, convener and members of the Movement for Sustainable Good Governance in the Autonomous Region (in Muslim Mindanao), imbibing the true essence of political participatory governance, asserting the advocacy of social justice, promotion and protection of the basic constitutional rights of the Bangsamoro people, and the entire constituents of the Autonomous Region, do hereby declare and manifest to the Public and to his Excellency President Benigno S. Aquino III...after due discussions and deliberations in a summit assembled, We, therefore, adopt and resolved this manifesto to call and declare our full support for the candidacy of the Provincial Governor of Sulu, Governor Abdusakur M. Tan as the next Regional Governor of the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao,” reads the signed manifesto, a copy of which was obtained by the Mindanao Examiner.

Ustadz Noreen Pallong, Basilan provincial convener and internal vice president of the Movement for Sustainable Good Governance, said they will also hold a similar summit in the cities of Cotabato and Marawi, and Davao, to further spread the strong clamour of the Muslims for Tan’s candidacy.

“There is a strong clamour from various Muslim civil society organizations and Bangsamoro people for the Sulu governor to govern the ARMM and bring peace and development to the region and progress to all its provinces and constituents. Governor Tan is the only leader we see fit to be the next ARMM governor,” he said.

Pallong, an influential Muslim religious leader in Basilan, said provincial constituents are strongly supporting Tan.

Tan, a known philanthropist and one of the most respected politicians, in the southern Philippines, did not give any statement about the manifesto, but he previously said that he is willing to serve should Aquino chooses him to be the official ARMM candidate in the synchronized regional and national elections.

Tan, a religious man, also sits as an observer to the government peace talks with Moro Islamic Liberation Front. (Mindanao Examiner)

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