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Candidates for ARMM regional governor

August 11, 2008 7:19pm

Candidates for ARMM Regional Governor
  • There are seven (7) candidates for Regional Governor in this year’s ARMM elections.

    Candidates for ARMM Regional Governor
    1. Arabani, Jupakar Pindah-Asia
    2. Ibrahim, Ismail Berto
    3. Nooh, Ahmad Darping
    4. Ampatuan, Zaldy Puti Uy
    5. Isnaji, Alvarez Silal
    6. Matalam, Guimid Panalangin
    7. Omar, Ali Jumadil
  • One (1) candidate is running under the administration’s Lakas-CMD -- incumbent Governor Datu Zaldy Puti Ampatuan; five (5) as independent and one (1) under the opposition’s Partido ng Masang Pilipino (PMP).
  • Indanan, Sulu Mayor Alvarez Isnaji, charged for the kidnapping of ABS-CBN broadcaster Ces Oreña- Drilon, her TV crew and Mindanao State University Professor Octavio Dinampo, is one of the candidates. Alvarez Isnaji and his son, Haider, who is running as ARMM assemblyman, are still under the custody of the PNP.
  • Two retired police officers are running for the top post.
  • Guimid Matalam Panalangin, former Maguindanao representative and former ARMM Vice-Governor, is running as governor under the Partido ng Masang Pilipino.
Candidates for ARMM Regional Governor:ARABANI, JUPAKAR PINDAH-ASIA “Joe"
  • Party/Affiliation: Independent
  • MPA / LLB (Masters in Public Administration / Bachelor of Laws)
  • Party/Affiliation: Independent
  • Profession/Occupation: retired PNP officer
  • Party/Affiliation: Independent
  • Profession/Occupation: Arabic professor
  • Nickname: Zaldy
  • Party/Affiliation: LAKAS-CMD
  • Career
    • incumbent Regional Governor, ARMM (2005-present)
    • chair, Regional Peace Council, ARMM
    • Municipal Mayor, Shariff Aguak, Maguindanao (1998-2005)
    • Regional Assemblyman, 2nd District, Maguindanao, RLA-ARMM (1993-1998)
    • President, KB Mun. Federation, Shariff Aguak
    • Ex-Officio Member, Sangguniang Bayan (1984-1986)
  • Political family
    • member of the Datumanong – Ampatuan political clan of Maguindanao
    • son of Maguindanao Governor Datu Andal Ampatuan Sr.
    • cousin of Maguindanao 2nd District Representative Simeon Datumanong
  • Issues
    • Assassination attempts on the Ampatuan family. Several members of the Ampatuan family including Maguindanao Gov. Datu Andal Ampatuan, his son Hoffer and nephew Zamzamin, a radio program host (and currently Undersecretary of Department of Agrarian Reform’s Central Office in Davao City and Mindanao Affairs) survived separate assassination attempts. Hoffer Ampatuan survived a bombing incident In April 2002 but was killed during an exchange of gunfire at a disco house in Maguindanao on Dec 22, 2002. Two days after Hoffer’s death, Datu Piang Mayor Saudie Ampatuan, another son of Governor Datu Andal, was killed. A homemade bomb exploded during a party he was hosting in his residence in Datu Piang, Maguindanao.
  • Stand on the peace process. Gov. Datu Zaldy Ampatuan says the entire regional government supports the MILF-GRP peace negotiation.
  • Party/Affiliation: Independent (as stated in his COC); but he also attached an endorsement from KAMPI in his COC
  • Profession/Occupation: incumbent Municipal Mayor of Indanan, Sulu
  • currently the head of the League of Municipalities in Sulu
  • Issues
    • Alvarez Isnaji was a Moro National Liberation Front leader.
    • served as speaker of the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao Regional Legislative Assembly during Misuari's term as regional governor.
    • temporarily assumed the post of acting governor position when Misuari went on official leave from September 3 to October 11, 2001
    • In 2001, a local court granted Isnaji's petition for a temporary restraining order that blocked then ARMM governor-elect Parouk Hussin from assuming the region's gubernatorial post. Isnaji's group argued that under the ARMM charter, Hussin's term could only start in 2002 since he was elected almost a month after the supposed start of his term. The Supreme Court eventually ruled in favor of Hussin.
    • Isnaji formed one of the three factions that broke away from the Misuari-led MNLF in 2002. The MNLF under Misuari alleged that Isnaji's group was financed by the Philippine government. Libyan Ambassador to the Philippines Adam Salem brokered the unity of these factions in 2003.
    • In April 2008, Isnaji declared that he recognizes Cotabato City mayor and former MNLF secretary general Muslimin Sema as MNLF's new chair after its Central Committee in a meeting in Pagadian City replaced Misuari with Sema.
    • Ces Drilon kidnapping. Kidnapping charges were filed against Mayor Isnaji, Haider Isnaji and several others on June 20 for the kidnapping of ABS-CBN broadcaster Ces Oreña-Drilon, her TV crew, and Mindanao State University Prof. Octavio Dinampo. Prof. Dinampo submitted a supplemental affidavit stating that he doesn’t believe that the Isnajis conspired with the kidnappers.
  • Party /Affiliation: Partido ng Masang Pilipino (PMP)
  • Profession/Occupation: businessman
  • Previous posts held:
    • Provincial Vice Governor, Cotabato City (1996-2000)
    • Assemblyman, Regional Legislative Assembly, ARMM (1993-1996)
    • Representative, 2nd District, Maguindanao (1987-1992)
    • Assemblyman, Region XII, Batasang Pambansa (1979-1987)
    • Technical Assistant, Office of Speaker Pro-Tempore Salipada Pendatun (1963-1975)
  • Party /Affiliation: Independent
  • Profession/Occupation: retired police officer
  • Previous posts held:
    • Consultant for the Regional Police Commission, ARMM (2002-2003)
    • Director of Intelligence and Investigation, Maritime Group, PNP Camp Crame (1999)
    • District Director, Maritime Group, Cagayan de Oro City, Region X (1997-1998)
    • District Director, Firearms Unit, Cotabato City, Region XII (1993-1996)
    • Station Commander, Maritime Police, Zamboanga City, Region IX (1991-1992)
    • District Director, Firearms Unit, Region XII (1988-1990)
    • Commanding Officer, 462nd PC Company, Pagadian City (1987-1988)
    • Operations Officer, Regional Special Action Forces, Region IX (1986-1987)
    • Operations Officer, Regional Special Action Forces, Region XII (1985-1986)
    • Company Commander, 541st PC Battalion (1984-1985)
    • Commanding Officer, Service Company, Camp Parang, Maguindanao (1983-1984)
    • Chief of Traffic Operations, Cotabato City (1982-1983)
    • Chief of Police, Sultan Kudarat, Maguindanao (1981)
    • Garrison Commander (1981-1982)
    • Intelligence and Operations Officer, North Cotabato Provincial Command (1979-1980)
    • Company Commander, 418th Company, Carmen, Cotabato (1977-1978)
    • Officer-in-Charge, 452nd PC Company (1976-1977)
  • ran for ARMM regional governor in 2005
Sources: candidates’ COCs and official biodata, GMA News Research,, phone interviews
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