By Ali G. Macabalang
COTABATO CITY – The two ruling political blocs of Lanao del Sur – Siap ko Inged Ago Pagtao (SIAP) and Ompia Party – have formed alliance for the 2022 elections and agreed to rally together Davao City Mayor Sara Zimmerman Duterte-Carpio if she would finally decide to run for President, coordinating officials announced over the weekend.
Lanao del Sur Vice Governor Mohammad Khalid “”Mujam” Rakiin-Adiong, SIAP chairman, and his father, Governor Mamintal “Bombit” Alonto–Adiong Jr., Ompia Party provincial chairman, alongside their members and supporters converged on a joint caucus in Marawi City on July 19 to formalize the alliance, Board Member Nasser Mariano-Ganda Sr. said over the weekend.
Ganda provided The Philippine Muslim Today news e-copies of the resolution and manifesto forged at the caucus, which he said was attended by board members, mayors, vice mayors, councilors, traditional leaders and politically-inclined traditional and religious leaders and representatives of various sectors from all 41 towns of Lanao del Sur as well as Marawi City Mayor Majul Gandamra.
“It is with great pride and honor that (all participants) have come united to support and witness this historic ceremony (meant to fortify collective political strides) for a more peaceful and prosperous province,” said the alliance manifesto.
The document said the Ompia and SIAP parties agreed to form a political alliance to pursue common interest, vision and platforms, put up a single slate for provincial, municipal and city elective positions in Lanao del Sur, and support Mayor Duterte-Carpio in the event of her Presidential candidacy in 2022, the coalition covenant said.
“We believe Mayor lnday Sara can successfully carry on the reforms started by her father, President Rodrigo Roa Duterte. Under President Duterte, Mindanao is not Left behind. We are confident that Mayor Sara will continue with this inclusive agenda, the bi-party manifesto said.
“Like her father, Mayor Sara is a strong, fierce, and independent leader who chooses to do what she thinks is right for her constituents. She is an effective leader as embodied in her excellent track record as three-time mayor. She is well-versed about the concerns and aspirations of LGUs in both peace and challenging times,” it added.
Butig town Dimnatang “Jimmy” Pansar, president of Lanao del Sur’s leave of municipal mayors and regional chair of the Ompia Party, had reportedly admired Mayor Sara for initiating the regional Hukbong Pagbabago Party, which has sustained respect and influence in political undertakings nationwide.
The SIAP-Ompia alliance will also promote comprehensive initiatives supportive of the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM) administration’s campaign for meaningful autonomy and good governance, the bilateral agreement said.
Ompia, which means progress in Meranaw dialect, was formed by late Alim (Islamic cleric) Mahid Mutilan when he ran and won as Marawi City mayor in 1989. Mutilan used the same party in his successful bid for provincial governor in early 1992. He further tapped the Ompia Party backing in winning the Muslim Mindanao regional vice governorship in 1997.
The Ompia Party is now chaired in the province by Gov. Adiong Jr. He had completed gubernatorial terms (June 30, 2007–June 30, 2016), served one vice gubernatorial term (June 30, 2016-June 30, 2019), and was elected again as governor under the Ompia Party in 2019. His mother, Soraya Alonto-Adiong sered as governor for one term (June 30, 2016-June 30, 2019.
On the other hand, SIAP, which literally means “concern of community and constituents,” is now led as president by Vice Mujam Adiong, son of the sitting governor. It was founded by the late Engr. Mamintal Adiong Sr., a former three-term congressman of the province’s 1st district congressman (1992–2001), said incumbent governor, popularly known as “Gov. Bombit.”
The father, who was elected governor in 2021, registered the SIAP party with the Commission on Elections after he won gubernatorial reelection in May 2004. He succumbed to cardiac arrest on July 4 of the same year, said Bombit.
Bombit said he discovered early this year that the SIAP Party registration was “still active” in the Comelec records. (AGM)