First Muslim Senator Reelected for a Second Term in the Philippines
Hijri 1349-Present (AH); Common Era 1930-Present (CE)
Santanina "Nina" Tillah Rasul chairs the Magbassa Kita Foundation, Inc. (MKFI), dedicated to the promotion of literacy, economic empowerment, and peace advocacy. In recognition of her literacy work in the Philippines, Ms. Rasul was appointed “Honorary Ambassador of UNESCO” during the ILY in 1990. She also chairs the Bantay Dagat Inc. (BDI), a multi-awarded non-government organization dedicated to the protection of the marine ecosystem. In addition, she is President of the Muslim Professional and Business Women Association of the Philippines (MPBWAP), lead Convener of the Muslim Women Peace Advocates, and was elected Advisor to the National Ulama Conference of the Philippines (NUCP) and the Philippine Council for Islam and Democracy. Ms. Rasul was elected Senator of the Republic of the Philippines in 1987 and re-elected in 1992, the first Muslim Senator reelected for a second term in the Philippines. Recipient of several national and international honors and awards, she was appointed Honorary Ambassador of UNESCO during the International Literacy year of 1990. Ms. Rasul was also appointed by President Fidel Ramos as a member of the Philippine Government Panel, which forged the Peace Agreement with the MNLF. For this work, she received the Golden Heart Presidential Award, “in recognition of her meritorious and valuable service rendered as member of the Republic of the Philippines-Southern Philippine Autonomous Group (GRP-SPAG) negotiating panel for her diligent efforts in reconciling contentious positions of both the government and the MNLF…” (Malacanang Palace, June 29, 1998). Ms. Rasul was elected Fellow of the World Academy of Arts and Science in 1997.