Ex-lawmaker Datumanong, 81
Edu Punay, Jess Diaz, John Unson (The Philippine Star) - March 2, 2017 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines - Former Maguindanao congressman and Cabinet member Simeon Datumanong died on Tuesday night. He was 81.

Datumanong died at the Philippine Heart Center in Quezon City, where he was confined for a week due to hypertension.

He was buried in his hometown Shariff Aguak yesterday in accordance with Muslim tradition.

Datumanong’s political career started when he was elected vice governor of Cotabato in 1963 when he was just 28 years old. He was elected Cotabato governor in 1967 and governor of Maguindanao in 1973.

He was also a member of the Batasang Pambansa during the Marcos era.

Datumanong was elected congressman of the second district of Maguindanao in 1992. He served for three terms until former president Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo appointed him secretary of the Department of Public Works and Highways in 2001.

On Jan. 16, 2003, Arroyo appointed Datumanong secretary of the Department of Justice. He served until Dec. 23 of the same year.

He returned to Congress in 2007 and was elected deputy speaker.  He was chairman of the committee on justice that dismissed the impeachment complaints filed  against Arroyo in 2005 and 2006.

Datumanong was also a member of the government panel when the 1976 Tripoli agreement was signed.

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