COTABATO CITY—For promoting the concept of education-for-peace in local governance, Maguindanao Gov. Esmael Mangudadatu recently received two honorary doctorate degrees in humanities and public administration at an international convention in Davao City.
The Jose Memorial College (JMC) and the Royal Institution (RI) of Singapore conferred on Mangudadatu twin honorary degrees in Doctor of Humanities and Public Administration during ceremonies Friday in Davao City.
They recognized the success of his local administration’s programs on college scholarship for the youth, and his governance policy of a continuing dialogue with young people as “exponent of peace.”
Event organizers said JMC is a school founded in Davao City by Evangelist Apollo Carreón Quiboloy of the Kingdom of Jesus Christ church. Its website says RI is a global professional multidisciplinary membership and accrediting organization with over 300 professional institutes as members.
The 19th RI International Conference and Conferment Ceremony was held in Hotel Jen, Pasay City, Philippines last July 28. The venue of its 21st International Conference and Conferment Ceremony slated for September 14 to 17 had yet to be announced, its website said.
Last December, the London Graduate School of Continuing Education Programs at Commonwealth University in Dubai also conferred on Mangudadatu an Honoris Causa with a Doctorate Degree in Humanities and Public Administration.
He is the first Filipino in the school’s shortlist of honorees, for championing education for children of families displaced by armed conflict.
This year, the Office of the Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process cited the Maguindanao governor as “champion of gender and development (GAD)” in his province, which the OPAPP has set as GAD programs model for the four other Muslim provinces in the south.
The provincial government has trained orphans of war and families of dissidents in various livelihood programs, “hitting a rising threshold poverty index right at its core.”
It also provides shelter for victims of violence against women and children, said Nur-Eeman Aljani, the chief of staff of the provincial governor’s office.
Mangudadatu said education is the only long-term solution to increasing concerns on the massive recruitment of young individuals into terror groups―some purportedly offering big amounts in cash.
The governor has held a series of dialogues with students, orphans, and young professionals in the province.
Students spoke to Mangudadatu about their learning experiences and on how the Maguindanao Peace (MagPeace) Study Grant Program helped them overcome the challenge of poverty, and eventually become professionals themselves.
The governor is probably one of few Filipinos so far among LGS-CEP award recipients. The London School’s roster of illustrious awardees includes the late Singaporean statesman Lee Kwan Yew, former US President Barack Obama, Microsoft founder Billy Gates, the late Indira Gandhi of India, and Chinese President Xi Jinping.
Mangudadatu said he was profoundly grateful for the separate honorary conferment of degrees in Doctor of Humanities and Public administration by the JMC and by RI Singapore which also granted him fellowship into academic scholarship stature.
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