MILF party fields bet vs. Cotabato reelectionist mayor

COTABATO CITY – A last-termer councilor here will seek the mayoralty post with the backing of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) political party–the United Bangsamoro Justice Party (UBJP).

Former councilor Mohammad Bruce Matabalao, a journalist-turned-politician, filed his certificate of candidacy for mayor on Friday afternoon to challenge reelectionist Cynthia Guiani-Sayadi.

Matabalao has served the city legislative body for three consecutive terms and resigned early this year to work as director of the Bangsamoro Transition Authority (BTA).

Lawyer Naguib Sinarimbo, Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM) interior minister and UBJP secretary-general, described Matabalao as a sincere, dedicated, and experienced local politician who was more than qualified to promote the UBJP advocacy of moral governance.

“We would just like to present a new kind of governance under Matabalao,” Sinarimbo said.

Sayadi, meanwhile, said she is willing to take on any challenger for the mayoralty post given her good track record as local chief executive.

“Cotabateños know me as they have seen my work for them the past three years. They could vouch for my record (as mayor),” she said.

Sayadi and her party, including vice-mayoral reelectionist Graham Nazer Dumama, filed their COCs under the local “One Kutawato” party before the Commission on Elections office here on Oct. 2, 2021. (PNA)

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