Good life inspires Good Leadership

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By Sorhaila Latip-Yusoph

Only a Meranaw

Monday, June 16, 2014

MEETING Hon. Raysalam Bagul-Mangondato this week in her municipality, Balindong, Lanao del Sur, is a beneficial and inspiring experience.

Mayora, as we call her, is a native Meranaw who grew up in an average family in Balindong, a soft-spoken yet determined mother to her family and community.

Her experience of good life became her motivation in pursuing all the projects that she personally implemented and monitored these days.


“I have lived comfortably so I want others in my community to experience the same,” she humbly affirmed.

Amazed by her inspiring vision, she boldly explained her sustainable programs introduced in her Municipality.

In the field of education, she has a continuous program that capacitates the teachers in her community and a scholarship support for learners at P500 per month.

She also provided necessary facilities to elementary schools such as toilets, washing and tooth brushing facilities; school supplies for the indigents; school chairs and even foot bridge for learners to use when going to school and back to their homes.

To help sustain the health of pupils and students, she presently supplies iodized salt as part of her nutritional program for schools.

She supports regional Palaro activities by giving allowances to delegates and coaches.

Further, to hasten the supervision and to continue the activities of school supervisors, she provides transportation allowances to each supervisor in her community.

The above mentioned support she gives to education in Balindong is just a few of the many projects she does in her community.
However, she emphasized that for her to be effective in her projects, she sees to it that all activities and financial supports are well documented and liquidated for transparency and accountability.

“Here in Balindong, we utilize our money effectively,” she politely stated.

Interestingly, she also supports the alternative learning programs in her area especially for out-of-school youth by providing trainings for farming, masonry, and carpentry and at the same time provided notebooks, materials and T-shirts for learners.

In barangay day care programs, she invited Early Childhood Education experts to create modules and give trainings to capacitate the day care staff.

With her other projects, here are some of the interesting ones that are worth emulating:

1. Proper provision of community health care through health enrolments for the indigents, availability of mother-child health care programs with professional health workers and yearly support for medicines including oral/dental health;

2. Provision of a standard Rural Health Unit with a 24/7 community service plus a fully air-conditioned emergency room and 24-hr stand-by ambulance;

3. In agricultural development, wheel and hand tractors are provided and livelihood programs for 20 baranggays, capability trainings for organic farming, proper irrigation and water systems;

4. Continuous infrastructure projects for roads (e.g. farm-to market roads) in the inaccessible barrios plus provision of potable water system;

5. Dressmaking programs for mothers with support to materials and transportation allowances for TESDA lecturers;

6. Support to community peace and order by giving ‘diat’ sponsorships for ‘rido’;

7. Waste management segregation using ecological material recovery kiosk;

8. Yearly support to Ramadhan programs for the memorization of the Qur’an.

She reaffirmed further that she will continue working for the best of her community while she leaves the rest to the Almighty.

Indeed, meeting this lady mayor is an honor.

She rekindled my idealism and belief that our province has a hope especially when all municipal leaders will be as accountable and idealistic as Mayor Raysalam.

She believes in this adage, “Live simply so that others will simply live!”

Mabuhay ka, Mayora!



(Prof. Sorhaila Latip-Yusoph is currently the chairperson of the Communication and Media Department, Mindanao State University, Marawi City.)

Published in the Sun.Star Cagayan de Oro newspaper on June 16, 2014.


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