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Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Datu Andal Ampatuan Sr.

Andal Ampatuan, Sr. is the patriarch of the powerful Ampatuan political family in Maguindanao province, on the island of Mindanao in the Philippines. He is the governor of the province.

Ampatuan first came into prominence when President Corazon Aquino appointed him as officer-in-charge of Maganoy (now Shariff Aquak) in 1986, right after the People Power Revolution. Aquino, having come into power via revolutionary means, replaced every locally-elected official with officers-in-charge. The town of Maganoy was approached differently; the ageing mayor, Pinagayaw Ampatuan, was replaced by his vice mayor, Andal Sr. He won the 1988 local elections, then served for ten years. In the 1998 elections, Andal Sr. was elected as governor.

Ampatuan's sons, Zaldy Ampatuan and Andal Ampatuan, Jr., are both members of his political clan. Andal Ampatuan Jr. came to international attention in November 2009 as the prime suspect in the Maguindanao massacre. As a result, all three Ampatuans were expelled from President Gloria Arroyo's Lakas Kampi CMD political party.