BARMM spox: Only 1 governor in Maguindanao Norte

Maguindanao del Norte has only one duly-appointed provincial governor, who the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM) officially recognizes. Lawyer Naguib Sinarimbo, Bangsamoro interior minister and BARMM spokesperson, reiterated this during a press conference here Thursday as he dismissed the claim of Bai Ainee Sinsuat that the recent Supreme Court ruling had acknowledged her governorship in the newly created province. Sinsuat was appointed vice governor by President Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr. in June, along with former Moro Islamic Liberation Front-Bangsamoro Islamic Armed Forces chief Abdulraof Macacua as governor. On Monday, Sinsuat stepped down as vice governor and assumed as acting governor, based on the SC ruling that granted her request to name an acting provincial treasurer. She filed the petition in February when she was acting governor, roughly two months after she and Macacua were appointed by President Marcos as vice governor and governor, respectively. Sinarimbo said Sinsuat erred in interpreting the latest SC ruling, as it only resolved the appointment of the provincial treasurer and did not delve into the question of who should be Maguindanao del Norte's chief executive. 'As far as the BARMM is concerned, there is only one governor in Maguindanao del Norte. There is someone assuming but as far as we are concerned, Gov. Macacua is the only governor as appointed by Pres. Marcos and his appointment has not been recalled,' Sinarimbo said. Lawyer Ronald Torres, Sinsuat's legal consultant, said Sinsuat assumed the post on Monday and currently holds office in Datu Odin Sinsuat town. Following Sinsuat's self-imposed decision to assume the governorship, Board Member Shariffudin Mastura also assumed as acting vice governor on the side of Sinsuat based on Republic Act 11550, thaw law that divided Maguindanao into two provinces, Torres added. To fill the purported vacancy, the provincial board designated Board Member Alexa Tomawis as presiding officer in a special session on Wednesday. In spite of the developments, Sinarimbo maintained that "by law, there is only one legal and legitimate governor in Maguindanao Norte and no other."

Source: Philippines News Agency