Sultan Kudarat is a province of the Philippines located in the SOCCSKSARGEN region in Mindanao. Its capital is Isulan and borders Maguindanao and Cotabato to the north, South Cotabato and Sarangani to the south, and Davao del Sur to the east, and the Celebes Sea to the west.
Sultan Kudarat was once a part of the former empire province of Cotabato. It was created as a separate province along with Maguindanao and North Cotabato on November 22, 1973 by virtue of Presidential Decree No. 341 signed by former Pres. Ferdinand E. Marcos.
The purpose of dividing Cotabato into three (3) smaller provinces is clearly stated in Presidential Decree No. 341, which pertinently provided, to wit: “Whereas, the province of Cotabato is one of the largest and richest provinces of the Philippines;
Whereas, the potentials of the province have not been fully developed due to the magnitude of the task of provincial development and troubles that have long plagued the area;
Whereas, the many conflicting political, social and economic interests that have limited the progress of the province must be resolved in order to promote the stability and accelerate the development of Cotabato; and
Whereas, there is a need for dividing the present province into smaller units which can be more effectively administered and developed”.
The name Sultan Kudarat given to the province was derived from a Muslim ruler, the late Sultan Muhammad Dipatuan Kudarat who begun to assert his leadership in the year 1619 and reigned the Sultanate of Maguindanao from January 1625 to 1671 AD.
He was a virtuous leader who embodied the idea of basic unity, oneness and freedom among the diverse people scattered throughout its Sultanate. For this reason, he was considered as one of the National heroes of the country and for his honour this province was named after him.