Maguindanao Governor Esmael “Toto” Mangudadatu

Born to be a leader

 Every man born in this world has his own destiny. And for Maguindanao Governor Esmael “Toto” Mangudadatu, he believed he is born to be a leader. With a political blood flowing into his veins, he has the craving to serve his people.

Mangudadatu was born on August 15, 1968 to father Pua Mangudadatu who was a famous politician in the past that was president of the “Magnificent 7,” a group of influential politicians in the province during the Marcos era.

At his early age, he was not really focused on following the footsteps of his father. In fact, he sought to escape his political dynasty and went to a University in order to be a doctor. It was there that Mangudadatu met his erstwhile wife Genalyn, from the Ilongga clan, while they were both studying in Davao City.

Esmael and Genalyn were married on November 11, 1991. Starting a family after his marriage, his medical studies was cut short but even after having many children he earned his Political Science Degree from the University of Mindanao in Davao City.

Seeking to financially support his ever increasing family, Mangudadatu visited the then governor of Maguindanao province, Zacaria Candao. His intention was to get approval for a new business venture but instead Candao, who was his godfather, talked him into running for office. He was elected and became a provincial board member. He went on to become Mayor of Buluan and after he reached his term limit became Vice Mayor. In 2010, he decided to challenge the Ampatuans in the election for governor of Maguindanao province.

Mangudadatu turned victorious after defeating his closest rival, Datu Ombra Sinsuat, a cousin of the Ampatuans,  by a margin of 12,705 votes. The race came to international attention after the 2009 Maguindanao massacre during which his wife, sisters, aides, and lawyers, plus several journalists were kidnapped and murdered. Andal Ampatuan, Jr., against whom Mangudadatu was running for mayor, was charged with the murders. He denies that he was involved.


One response to this post.

  1. the great great toto


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