MANILA - Former Maguindanao governor Andal Ampatuan Sr. passed away Friday evening, lawyer Ferdie Topacio told DZMM.
The 74-year old clan patriarch died at around 10:02 p.m. at the National Kidney and Transplant Institute (NKTI) in Quezon City.
Ampatuan Sr. fell into a coma Monday after suffering from a massive heart attack.
He was brought to the hospital on June 5 due to complications in his liver. Further tests showed that the former governor was suffering from terminal liver cancer, among other illnesses.
According to Datu Yasser Ampatuan, a funeral is being prepared in Ampatuan Sr.'s hometown in Shariff Aguak in Maguindanao.
Ampatuan Sr. and his sons are among the main suspects in the gruesome Maguindanao massacre that claimed the lives of 58 individuals, including 32 journalists.
WHO IS ANDAL AMPATUAN SR.?
Ampatuan Sr. first rose to power as vice-mayor of Shariff Aguak (formerly Maganoy) in Maguindanao during the Marcos regime, according to journalist Ellen Tordesillas.
One of his daughters, Rebecca, told the Philippine Center for Investigative Journalism in 2010 that her father had 6 wives and 40 children.
He solidified his clan's hold on political power in Maguindanao as an ally of then President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo and her Lakas-Kampi-CMD bloc.
Maguindanao was the only province that delivered a 12-0 sweep for Arroyo's senatorial ticket in the 2007 midterm elections.
Unable to run for a fourth term, he was grooming Andal Jr., one of the Ampatuan patriarch's 11 children with his first wife, Bai Laila, of becoming next governor of the province.
Then Buluan vice mayor Esmael "Toto" Mangudadatu challenged the Ampatuans' control of Maguindanao by running for governor against Andal Jr. in the 2010 elections.
The Ampatuans were allegedly the brains behind the Maguindanao Massacre, which took place on November 23, 2009. The mass killing allegedly ordered by Ampatuan Sr. and his sons claimed the lives of 58 people, including Mangudadatu's wife, his two sisters and at least 34 journalists.
Two days later, on November 25, 2009, the Lakas-Kampi-CMD political party expelled Ampatuan Sr. and his two sons, Gov. Datu Zaldy Ampatuan of the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM) and Andal Jr.
Andal Jr. surrendered on November 26, 2009. Ampatuan Sr. and his son Datu Zaldy were arrested December 5.
Ampatuan Sr. was arraigned inside a Manila prison on June 1, 2011. He pleaded not guilty.
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