Dinagat Islands Governor Kaka Bag-ao is an alternative lawyer and a human rights advocate.
Before entering politics, she was the lead counsel of the Sumilao farmers, who walked the 1,700 km distance between Sumilao, Bukidnon in Mindanao and Manila. She also led civil society organizations in the passage of the CARPER Law. Beyond being a politician, Governor Bag-ao is a community organizer and lawyer for the poor and marginalized. She pursued cases for and with marginalized sectors like farmers, fisherfolk, workers, urban poor, women, and LGBTQ+ persons as part of her work in human rights and developmental legal resource organizations such as BALAOD Mindanaw, SALIGAN, and the Alternative Law Groups.
She served three terms in the House of Representatives — as Congresswoman of Akbayan Party-List in the 15th Congress and of the Lone District of Dinagat Islands in the 16th and 17th Congresses. She is the principal author of progressive landmark laws such as the Reproductive Health Law, the Sangguniang Kabataan Reform Act, and the Philippine HIV and AIDS Policy Act.
Now, as Governor of Dinagat Islands, her vision is to build resilient, self-reliant, and healthy communities of active and empowered citizens who work and share equitably the fruits of their labor and the natural wealth of the islands, cognizant and respectful of their carrying capacity in a vibrant local economy, living in peace and solidarity with one another.