MAGUINDANAO Rep. Zajid “Dong” Mangudadatu was chosen by President Rodrigo “Rody” Duterte as one of
the potential senatorial candidates of the ruling Partido Demokratikong Pilipino-Lakas ng Bayan
(PDP-Laban) to represent the Muslims in Mindanao.
President Duterte described Mangudadatu as a “steadfast Mindanao pacifist” from Maguindanao.
Speaker Pantaleon “Bebot” Alvarez, who presided over mass oath-taking of new party members
held recently in Bacong in Negros Oriental, confirmed that Mangudadatu has been included in the
PDP-Laban Senate slate for the 2019 midterm election.
Aside from President Duterte, Alvarez said key party leaders were united in endorsing
Mangudadatu, noting the lawmaker’s sincerity and hard work in pursuing peace in the South,
particularly the heroic role he played in averting an escalation of violence in the wake of the 2015
Mangudadatu, vice chairman of the House committees on Muslim affairs and on Mindanao
affairs, accepted his party’s decision even as he thanked President Duterte, Alvarez and Senate
President Aquilino “Koko” Pimentel IV for trusting him the role of spearheading the cause for Muslim
concerns and Mindanao peace as PDP-Laban senatorial bet.
“I am humbled by the vote of confidence given to me by PDP-Laban, Speaker Alvarez, and
President Duterte. I will work hard so that there will be proper representation for Filipino Muslims
in the Senate,” said Mangudadatu.
The lawmaker added: “My main thrust and motivation will be towards long lasting peace and
progress not just in Mindanao but the entire Philippines. I pray and hope that the entire Filipino
people will give me the trust and break the barrier of religious beliefs that has hindered long-
lasting peace and sustainable progress in major parts of our country.”
Mangudadatu is a member of the group of lawmakers tasked to consolidate the four Bangsamoro
Basic Law (BBL) proposals authored by former President-turned Pampanga Rep. Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo,
Deputy Speaker and Maguindanao Rep. Bai Sandra Sema, Lanao del Norte Rep. Khalid Dimaporo and House
leaders headed by Alvarez.
In the 17th Congress, Mangudadatu authored two measures that have been passed on third and
final reading; House Bill (HB) No. 5707 or “An Act Rightsizing the National Government to Improve
Public Service Delivery” and HB No. 6893 or “An Act Regulating the use of Treatment Technology for
Municipal and Hazardous Wastes, Repealing for the Purpose Section 20 of the Philippine Clean Air Act