GENERAL SANTOS CITY (MindaNews / 07 June) – A seasoned politician in Mindanao, Suharto “Teng” Mangudadatu, former governor and representative of Sultan Kudarat province, is now the head of the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA).
President Ferdinand Marcos, Jr. appointed on Tuesday Mangudadatu, whose family lorded over Sultan Kudarat province’s political scene in the last 25 years.
Mangudadatu and his family campaigned for Marcos in the 2022 presidential elections.
The Presidential Communications Office (PCO) announced the appointment of Mangudadatu as director general of TESDA, a position with a rank of Secretary.
“His tenure as governor was marked by notable achievements and initiatives aimed at improving the lives of the province’s residents,” the PCO press release said.
Mangudadatu, who replaced Danilo Cruz, served as representative of the lone district of Sultan Kudarat from 2004 to 2007.
Before that, Mangudadatu was mayor of Lutayan, Sultan Kudarat for two terms from 1998 to 2004.
He became governor of Sultan Kudarat from 2007 to 2016, completing three terms in office. He then represented the province’s first district from 2016 to 2019 in the Lower House.
He returned as governor from 2019 to 2022 and did not seek political office in the May 2022 elections.
Mangudadatu is the son of former Sultan Kudarat Governor Datu Pax Mangudadatu.
The elder Mangudadatu held the position from 1998 to 2007 and from 2016 to 2019. He was the province’s first district representative from 2016 to 2019.
The province is now governed by Datu Pax Ali Mangudadatu, son of Suharto and Maguindanao del Sur Governor Mariam Sangki-Mangudadatu.
In a Facebook post, the younger Mangudadatu congratulated his father and thanked Marcos for appointing him as TESDA chief.
The son described the father as the “Man of the People.”
“This feat proves the impact of people-oriented service he has rendered through the years,” Datu Pax Ali said. “The Province of Sultan Kudarat is a sole witness to his pioneering capabilities in the humble pursuit for development, which sets the standard in defining true public service – Serbisyong Tapat at Maaasahan!”
Suharto Mangudadatu pursued his college education at the South Western University in Cebu, where he obtained a Bachelor of Science degree in Physical Therapy. The Sultan Kudarat State University conferred him an honorary Doctor of Philosophy degree in recognition of his accomplishments. (Zaki Sarmiento / MindaNews)