Juan Miguel Zubiri

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Juan Miguel Zubiri
Miguel Zubiri Senate 2018 (cropped).jpg
Zubiri in 2018
Senator of the Philippines
Assumed office
June 30, 2016
In office
June 30, 2007 – August 11, 2011
Chair of the Philippine Senate
Cooperatives Committee
Assumed office
July 25, 2016
Preceded byLito Lapid
Chair of the Philippine Senate
Trade, Commerce and
Entrepreneurship Committee
In office
July 25, 2016 – May 25, 2018
Preceded byBam Aquino (as Trade and Commerce)
Succeeded byAquilino Pimentel III
Senate Majority Leader
Assumed office
May 21, 2018
Preceded byVicente Sotto III
In office
November 17, 2008 – June 30, 2010
Preceded byFrancis Pangilinan
Succeeded byVicente Sotto III
Member of the Philippine House of Representatives from Bukidnon's 3rd District
In office
June 30, 1998 – June 30, 2007
Preceded byJose Ma. R. Zubiri, Jr.
Succeeded byJose Ma. F. Zubiri III
Personal details
Juan Miguel Fernández Zubiri

(1969-04-13) April 13, 1969 (age 50)
Makati, Metro Manila, Philippines
Political partyIndependent (2011–2012, 2014–present)
Other political
PMP (2012–2013)
Lakas CMD/Lakas-Kampi-CMD (1998–2011)
Spouse(s)Audrey Tan
ChildrenMaria Adriana
Juan Miguel Jr.
Santiago Gabriel
Alma materUniversity of the Philippines Los Baños (B.S.)
Net worth152 million (2017)[1]

Juan Miguel "Migz" Fernández Zubiri (born April 13, 1969) is a Filipino businessman and politician who served three consecutive terms in the Philippine House of Representatives for the third district of Bukidnon and as a senator. In the 14th Congress of the Philippine Senate, he became Senate Majority Leader, replacing Senator Francis Pangilinan on November 17, 2008.[2] During his Majority Leadership, the Senate passed a record 650 bills.[citation needed] In the 17th Congress, he was once again elected as Senate Majority Leader on May 21, 2018, filling the vacancy left by elected Senate President Vicente Sotto III.[3]

He is also the current chairman of the Philippine Eskrima Kali Arnis Foundation[4] and the vice chairman of the Philippine Red Cross.[5]

During his first term as senator, Zubiri announced his resignation from the Senate on August 3, 2011, following allegations of poll fraud during the Senate elections of 2007. He continued to deny the allegations.[6][7][8][9] His resignation marked a first in Senate history, as other senators who left the Senate did so in order to take up another post in public office.[10]

Personal life

Zubiri was born in Makati City, Philippines to a Negrense father, Jose Maria Rubin Zubiri, Jr. from Kabankalan City and a Bicolana mother, Maria Victoria Ocampo Fernandez of Libon, Albay who was raised in the province of Bukidnon in Mindanao. He speaks Cebuano, Tagalog, English, and his father's native Hiligaynon. His father Jose Maria is the incumbent Bukidnon provincial governor.

His family is of partial (patrilineal) Basque and Spanish heritage.

Zubiri maintains a residence in the province of Bukidnon.

On March 16, 2020, Zubiri announced that he was diagnosed with COVID-19. As of March 27, 2020, he is one of the four highest ranking Philippine Government official to have been infected with the SARS-CoV2 including Senator Angara, Senator Pimentel and AFP Chief of Staff General Santos.

Notable Positions and Affiliations

• President and Chairman, Philippine Eskrima Kali Arnis Federation
• Governor of the Philippine Red Cross
• Member, Rotary Club of Makati
• Governor, Ranchers' Club Philippines 1989– University of the Philippines Los Banos chapter[11]
• Chairman, Amateur Boxing Association of the Philippines Bukidnon Chapter
• Chairman, Paglaum Foundation
• Member, Upsilon Phi Sigma Fraternity and Sorority
• President of the KATALA Foundation
• President of the Philippine Deer Foundation


Zubiri finished elementary and high school in Colegio San Agustin-Makati. He graduated from the University of the Philippines Los Baños with a degree in Bachelor of Science in Agribusiness Management. He also earned a Master of Environment and Natural Resources Management degree from the University of the Philippines Open University.

In 2018, he was conferred with an Honorary Fellowship by the Royal Institution of Singapore.[12]

Political career


After serving as chief of staff of his father, Rep. (now Bukidnon Governor) Jose Maria Zubiri, Jr., from 1995–1998, he ran for the seat representing the third district of Bukidnon to be vacated by his father in the 1998 general elections. Winning easily in that election, he served his first term in the 10th Congress. During his first term, he was one of the members of what the media dubbed as the "Spice Boys", a group of neophyte and two-term congressmen who were openly critical of President Joseph Estrada's administration. He was subsequently re-elected to the Philippine House of Representatives in the 2001 and 2004 elections.


After serving as a congressman for three terms, he was drafted by Lakas CMD to be one of their candidates in the pro-Gloria Macapagal Arroyo administration TEAM Unity ticket for the 2007 mid-term elections.

In the final tally for the 2007 senatorial race by the Philippine Commission on Elections (Comelec), Rep. Zubiri narrowly defeated opposition candidate Koko Pimentel for the 12th and last slot in the Senate. Zubiri had a total of 11,001,730 votes against Pimentel's 10,983,358 votes.[13] The margin of some 18,372 votes was strongly contested, particularly the votes from the southern Philippine province of Maguindanao, where Pimentel had lost to Zubiri by a landslide.

Claiming that the votes in Maguindanao were tainted,[14] Pimentel petitioned the Philippine Supreme Court to invalidate the votes from Maguindanao, effectively disenfranchising a whole province. The Supreme Court voted unanimously 14 -0 against Pimentel and allowed the COMELEC (Commission on Elections) to count the votes in Zubiri's favor. Pimentel then returned to the Supreme Court for a second time. This time, he petitioned the justices to issue a restraining order against the proclamation of Zubiri. After oral arguments, however, the High Tribunal again voted to uphold the COMELEC's decision to proclaim Zubiri, consequently failing to grant Pimentel's petition.[15] The next day, July 14, 2007, Zubiri was duly proclaimed elected to the Philippine Senate. However, the Court's judgment did not prevent Pimentel from bringing his poll protests to the Senate Electoral Tribunal.

On March 14, 2008, the Supreme Court, in a 40-page decision penned by Associate Justice Minita Chico-Nazario, dismissed Koko Pimentel petition to stop the Commission on Elections from canvassing votes from the province of Maguindanao,[16] a definite morale booster for Senator Zubiri.

While serving his stint in the Senate, Zubiri began advocating a more in-depth study of biofuels in order to prevent food shortages, all the while allowing current production of alternative clean energy and biofuels so as to lessen dependence on imported oil and allow the Philippine economy a new avenue of economic success, "especially in this day and age of constant rising oil prices".[17]

On August 3, 2011, however, during his privilege speech on the floor in the Philippine Senate, Zubiri suddenly announced his resignation from the body.[6] In his speech, he said that his family was hurt by the "unfounded" accusations against him. "Without admitting any fault and with my vehement denial of the alleged electoral fraud hurled against me, I am submitting my resignation as a duly elected Senator of the Republic of the Philippines in the election for which I am falsely accused without mercy and compassion," Zubiri said in his speech. "My political detractors began calling me ugly names and dragging the name of my family in entirety. In other words, Mr. President, the trial by publicity has begun," he continued.

His resignation was lauded by Malacañang and various sectors,[18][19] but was also seen as a step that helped restore the Filipino's faith in national electoral protests.

Senator Francis Pangilinan, a member of the Senate Electoral Tribunal, likewise refused to comment on what the next procedure is for the vacancy left by Zubiri. "Let's just wait for developments if any," he said.[20]

In 2016, he ran again for the Senate as an independent candidate. Zubiri was adopted by various political parties who considered his popularity among voters of various age and social groups. With 16 million votes, he placed sixth in the polls.


Among the laws Zubiri has sponsored, authored, or co-authored across his time in both houses of Congress are:

RA 11054 – Bangsamoro Organic Law;

RA 9153 – Renewable Energy Act of 2008;

RA 9367 – Biofuels Act of 2006;

RA 10068 – Organic Agriculture Act of 2010;

RA 9147 – Wildlife Conservation and Protection Act;

RA 10121 – Philippine Disaster Risk Management Act;

RA 9165 – Comprehensive Dangerous Drugs Act of 2002;

RA 9679 – the Home Development Mutual Fund Law of 2009 (Pag-IBIG Fund);

RA 9653 – the Rent Control Act of 2009;

RA 9997 – the National Commission on Muslim Filipinos Act of 2009;

RA 9996 – the Mindanao Development Authority Act of 2010;

RA 9904 – the Magna Carta for Homeowners and Homeowners’ Associations;

RA 9903 – Condonation of Penalties on Delinquent Social Security Contributions;

RA 9507 – the Socialized and Low-Cost Housing Loan Condonation Program;

RA 9850 – Declaring Arnis as the National Martial Art and Sport;

RA 9500 – UP Charter Amendments;

RA 9163 – National Service Training Program;

RA 9166 – Armed Forces of the Philippines Rate Pay Base Increase Act;

RA 10072 – the New Charter of the Philippine Red Cross;

RA 9645 – Declaring July 27 of Every Year as Araw ng Iglesia Ni Cristo and as Special Working Holiday;

RA 9849 – Declaring EidulAdha as a National Holiday;

RA 10962 – Gift Check Act of 2017; and

RA 11032 – Ease of Doing Business and Efficient Government Service Delivery Act.



  1. ^ "Villar richest senator, Trillanes poorest in 2017". CNN Philippines. May 17, 2018. Archived from the original on May 30, 2018. Retrieved May 30, 2018.
  2. ^ "Zubiri is new Senate Majority Leader". GMA News Online.
  3. ^ "Zubiri elected as Senate majority leader". GMA News Online.
  4. ^ "Zubiri takes his oath as PEKAF Chairman". Retrieved October 14, 2019.
  5. ^ "Philippine Red Cross | Humanitarian Organization in the Philippines".
  6. ^ a b Zubiri resigns amid poll fraud scandal | Inquirer News. (August 3, 2011). Retrieved on August 13, 2011.
  7. ^ Zubiri to give up Senate seat | ABS-CBN News | Latest Philippine Headlines, Breaking News, Video, Analysis, Features. ABS-CBN News. Retrieved on August 13, 2011.
  8. ^ Senator Zubiri resigns amid 2007 poll fraud controversy – Nation – GMA News Online – Latest Philippine News. Retrieved on August 13, 2011.
  9. ^ Zubiri resigns from Senate Archived March 20, 2012, at the Wayback Machine. (June 15, 1991). Retrieved on August 13, 2011.
  10. ^ "With resignation, Zubiri makes Senate history". GMA News Online.
  11. ^ Body Talk with Migz Zubiri | Entertainment, News, The Philippine Star | › entertainment › 2013/05/04
  12. ^ "Migz Zubiri earns honorary fellowship in Singapore | | Latest Philippine politics news today". December 2, 2018.
  13. ^ "The Philippine Daily Tribune". Archived from the original on July 15, 2007.
  14. ^ "ABS-CBN News". Archived from the original on July 1, 2007.
  15. ^, SC paves way for Zubiri proclamation Archived July 15, 2007, at the Wayback Machine. None. Retrieved on August 13, 2011.
  16. ^, Zubiri: SC decision a big morale booster. Retrieved on August 13, 2011.
  17. ^ "– Food vs. Fuel issue not applicable to RP".
  18. ^ "Senator Zubiri resigns amid 2007 poll fraud controversy". GMA News Online.
  19. ^ "Enrile commends Zubiri; resignation saddened colleagues". - Online Filipino News. August 3, 2011.
  20. ^ Senator Zubiri resigns from post, to run in 2013 – Yahoo!. (August 3, 2011). Retrieved on August 13, 2011.

External links

Preceded by
Francis Pangilinan
Majority leader of the Senate of the Philippines
Succeeded by
Vicente Sotto III
Preceded by
Jose Ma. R. Zubiri, Jr.
Representative, 3rd District of Bukidnon
Succeeded by
Jose Ma. F. Zubiri III
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