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Friday, October 22, 2010

Filipino Presidents

Carlos P. Garcia
(1896 - 1971 ; president 1957-1959); 
8th President of the Philippines
Exemplary Politician

“A nation does not live on physical strength alone, and it will bring no good for a nation if in strengthening the living conditions of the people will endanger the spiritual condition.”

      Carlos P. Garcia was born in a small town of Talibon, Bohol on November 4, 1896. His parents, both native of Talibon, were Policronio Garcia and Ambrosia Polistico. At an early age, Carlos has shown an unusual leadership skill. He is always at the top of his class from elementary until he finished law at the Philippine Law School. Carlos studied at Talibon Elementary School and pursued his secondary education in Cebu. He started studying law at Silliman University in Dumaguete, Negros Oriental and continued it in Manila. He is one of the top ten passers of the civil service examination in 1923. At the College of Law, Carlos has the privilege of studying for free under the Malcolm Scholarship. Carlos was considered as “Prince of Cebuano Poets.”
     Garcia started government service as a teacher in a public school. After two and a half year, he joined politics. He was elected as representative in Congress of the third district of Bohol for six years. To grant the favor of his fellow Boholanos, he ran for governor and won. He remained as governor of Bohol for 9 years. Garcia became senator from 1941 until 1953 except for the years when the Philippines was under the Japanese. As senator, Garcia is one of the exceptional lawmaker from 1949 to 1953 service without a gap. He became the vice presidential candidate of the Nacionalista party from 1947 to 1953.
     At the end of his term as a senator, Garcia was elected Vice President of the Philippines. He was also appointed by President Magsaysay as Secretary of Foreign Affairs department. After the sudden death of President Magsaysay, Vice President Garcia took the oath of office as President of the Philippines. In the presidential election of 1957, Garcia won and continue enjoying the presidency to its full term. His toughest rival in the election is Jose Yulo of Iloilo, Secretary of Finance.
     The more dangerous years in the life of President Garcia has gone through the dark years of the Japanese occupation. Due to his non-cooperation with Philippine Puppet Republic, during the Japanese regime, there is a reward to whoever could lead to his capture, dead or alive. In three different instances, he was in danger if almost captured but fortunately, he survived and evaded capture like once, together with his father, Garcia has their ship been damaged while they are escaping. Another instance, Garcia was planned to be liquidated by other guerillas which is the arch nemesis of their group.
     As president, Garcia gave a priority attention to the ignorance of the society to the kind of morality we have now. President Garcia said: “We have to strengthen our morality. Our moral standard should be fortified… The divided and fallen nation which once is very powerful will prove that in our livelihood development, if it does not depend on morality, will only serve as destroyer of a nation. I have a strong belief that a strong character of a nation is the most effective defense against the challenge of communism.”
    On his inaugural speech, Carlos P. Garcia said: “A livelihood development of a nation does not depend on government alone, in the end; the responsibility to strengthen the livelihood of a nation is much dependent on its citizen. It is more dependent in the hands of the people because of their conditions and experience in trade, has the ability to be the leader in giving opportunities to the needy.”
    President Garcia’s wife is Leonila Dimataga of Opon, Cebu. They have one daughter named Linda. We could not deny the fact as a former president, he is always been asked for advice by government officials who succeeded him. President Carlos P. Garcia died of a heart attack on June 14, 1971 at the age of 75.

Major World Events During Garcia’s Administration

France. De Gaulle becomes premier, 1958
Egypt. United Arab Republic formed by merger of Egypt and Syria, 1958
Africa. Among former colonies to gain independence are Nigeria, Somalia and the Congo, 1960
Soviet Union launches first man into space, 1961
Cuba defeats rebel invaders, 1961

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