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Mujiv Hataman’s ‘change of heart’

In politics, nothing is permanent.

Or, it could be a case of I’m telling you something but I really mean something else.

In an interview with VERA Files‘ Artha Kira Paredes last August, Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao’s Acting Governor Mujiv Hataman said he is not running in the 2013 elections.  He said he wanted to “rest (from politics) for three years.”

Hataman is the incumbent governor of ARMM. He was appointed by Aquino as OIC governor on December 2011 when the ARMM elections in 2010 did not push through.

His interim appointment was supposed to ease the transition for the elected governor in 2013.

The President swears in Hataman as the OIC ARMM Governor on December 19, 2011. Photo by BENHUR ARCAYAN, Malacañang Photo Bureau.

The President swears in Hataman as the OIC ARMM Governor on December 19, 2011. Photo by BENHUR ARCAYAN, Malacañang Photo Bureau.

Hataman has earlier said in various media interviews that he was being urged by President Aquino to run.  The Philippine Daily Inquirer reported that Hataman has quoted the President as saying: “Pare, parang kailangan mong tumakbo.”

And now the president has officially endorsed Hataman as the Liberal Party’s bet in the ARMM gubernatorial race. In an interview with the Philippine Star, Aquino said: “Again, given the foreseeable transition and what he (Hataman) has already achieved, and he has clearly shown allegiance to the (reform) agenda, it would be a disservice to do otherwise (or prohibit him from running).”

What a difference a month makes.

Read the “Official Statement of ARMM OIC Governor Mujiv Hataman on his decision to run as ARMM Governor this 2013 election” from the ARMM website:

Bilang tugon sa tiwalang ibinigay ni Pangulong Benigno Aquino III at panawagan ng nakararami na ipagpatuloy ang nasimulan nating reporma sa ARMM, tayo po ay nakapagpasya na tanggapin ang hamong tumakbo bilang gobernador ng ARMMn sa kauna-unahang synchronized elections, taong 2013.

Ang desisyong ito ay ilang araw din naming pinag-isipan ng aking pamilya. Matapos ang mataimtim na panalangin sa Allah na gabayan tayo ng tamang desisyon at bilang tugon sa masidhing panawagan ng ibat-ibang sector ng lipunan lalong lalo na ng mga Civil Society Organizations o CSOs, napagdesisyunan po natin na tumakbo para ipagpatuloy ang mga nasimulang pagbabago dito sa ARMM inshaAllah.
 
Aminado po ako na hindi natin lubusang maipapatupad ang reporma sa ARMM sa ilalim ng ating kasalukuyang mandato. Sa loob ng ating maiksing panunugkulan nadama ng mamamayan ng ARMM ang simula ng pagbabago. Walang dahilan upang ipagkait natin sa kanila ang karapatang magpasya kung nais nilang magpatuloy ito.
 
Ipagpapatuloy po natin ang pagtatanim ng mga binhi ng reporma. Tuloy- tuloy ang ating paglilinis sa byurukrasya na dati ay lugmok sa korapsyon. Tuloy- tuloy din ang ating kampanya laban sa mga ghost employees at tiwaling kawani ng gobyerno. Tuloy- tuloy din po ang ating suporta sa kasalukuyang usaping pangkapayapaan sa pagitan ng pamahalaan at MILF. Higit sa lahat tuloy- tuloy din po ang pagtutok sa paghahatid ng socio- economic development sa rehiyon.
 
Hindi maatim ng aking konsyensya na talikuran ang tiwalang ipinagkaloob ng mga mamamayan ng rehiyon na patuloy na pamunuan ang pagbabago.
 
Dahil sa tiwala ng ating Pangulo, tayo po ay nabigyan ng pagkakataon na mamuno sa ARMM. Hayaan naman natin ang mga mamamayan ng ARMM  ang magpasya sa darating na halalan.
 
Ipagpatuloy natin ang nasimulan. Matuwid na pamamahala tungo sa ARMM na masagana’t mapayapa.
 
Maraming salamat. Mabuhay ang Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao.
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