IN RECOGNITION of his invaluable efforts and lifetime service to the development of Lanao del Sur, Mindanao State University conferred an honorary doctorate on Provincial Governor Mamintal Alonto Adiong Jr. last January 20.

The university granted Adiong the Doctorate Degree in Humanities, Honoris Causa, during a conferment ceremony in Marawi City. The Doctor of Humanities is granted in recognition of public servants and community prime movers for community achievements, generative initiatives, and public leadership that benefit society as a whole.

In his speech, he emphasized the driving forces behind his steadfast public leadership, including the legacy of his ancestors. He also accentuated Mindanao State University's commitment to shaping the future by molding students to be great leaders.

"I will strive more to be of better use to the Meranao community in contributing most to the advancement of its rural areas. I am bent on leaving a good legacy," Adiong said.

Before acquiring his honorary degree, he had extensive experience in public service. In a span of nearly 30 years, he was a Sangguniang Panlalawigan member, a Provincial Administrator, a Provincial Engineer before finally becoming the Governor. He also has a Master's Degree in Public Administration.

Adiong's office has been toiling this pandemic to strengthen Marawi, including the continuous rollout of vaccines, expansion of the water system, more road construction, giving digital sewing machines to weavers, and good livestock management through cooperatives.

He is also keen on distributing tablets to indigent junior and high school students, developing leaders through a youth parliament, and giving a regular school allowance to international chess wunderkind Al-Bashir Buto, a Meranaw.

Exceptional public service runs in the family as the first honorary degree from MSU in 1988 was granted to his grandfather, the late Senator Ahmad Domocao Alonto Sr. He had filed bills to expand Mindanao and its people, including laws establishing the Mindanao State University and the Commission on National Integration. (Ayunan G. Gunting/PR)