Sultan Tomawis Is Head of Office on Muslim Affairs

Article excerpt

Byline: EDD K. USMAN

President Arroyo has appointed long-time ally Sultan Yahya "Jerry" M. Tomawis as head of the Office on Muslim Affairs (OMA), ending uncertainties among officials and personnel of the agency under the Office of the President.

Tomawis replaced Datu Zamzamin Ampatuan, whom the President had earlier named as chairman of the National Anti-Poverty Commission (NAPC).

The new OMA executive director, a top Mindanao businessman who served as assemblyman of the Marcos-era Lupong Tagapagpaganap ng Pook, yesterday assumed his post in cordial turnover rites presided by Ampatuan. His position is ranked as undersecretary.

"Pursuant to the provisions of existing laws, you are hereby appointed Executive Director, Office on Muslim Affairs, Office of the President, vice Zamzamin L. Ampatuan," read Tomawiss appointment papers signed by the President on July 18.

Rep. Acmad Tomawis, who twice headed OMA and is now a sectoral representative, vowed to help increase the agencys budget. The representative is a brother of the new OMA executive director.

OMA Deputy Executive Directors Solaiman Mutia, Adam Musa, Nor Adiong, and Datu Ali Sangki assured Undersecretary Tomawis of their cooperation, saying OMA officials must all work together to carry out the agencys mandate to serve the Muslims. …