The Manila Times

The President turns 55



THE 15th ppresident of the Philippine­s, Benigno Simeon Cojuangco Aquino III, also known as Noynoy Aquino or PNoy, is celebratin­g his 55th birthday today, February 8, 2015.

Born at 10:28 am in Sampaloc, Manila on Feb-February 8, 1960 at Far Eastern University Hospital in - dren of Benigno S. Aquino Jr., who was then the vice governor of Tarlac Province and Corazon Aquino, daughter of prominent Tarlac businessma­n. He has four sisters: Maria Elena (Balsy) Aquino-Cruz, Aurora Corazon (Pinky) Aquino-Abellada, Victoria Elisa (Viel) Aquino Dee, and Kristina Bernadette (Kris) Aquino.

Aquino attended Ateneo de Manila University for his elementary, high school and college education where

Letter from his father

In September 1972, Aquino’s father Ninoy, who was then a senator and prominent opposition leader to President Ferdinand Marcos, was arrested for subversion. In August 1973, his father Ninoy was brought before a military tribunal in Fort Bonifacio. On August 25, 1973, Ninoy wrote a letter to Noynoy from Fort Bonifacio giving advice to his son:

“The only advice I can give you: Live with honor and follow your conscience. There is no greater nation on earth than our Motherland. No greater people than our own. Serve them with all your heart, and with all your might and with all your strength. Son, the ball is now in your hands.”

In 1980, after a series of heart attacks, Aquino’s father was allowed to seek medical treatment in the United States where Aquino’s family began a period of self-exile. In 1981, shortly after his graduation in college, PNoy joined his family in the United States.

Return to Manila

In 1983, after three years in exile in the United States, Aquino’s family returned to the Philippine­s, shortly after the assassinat­ion of his father on August 21, 1983. Noynoy worked as an assistant of the executive director of Philippine Business for Social Progress then he joined Mondragon Industries Philippine­s Inc. as an assistant Retail Sales Supervisor and assistant promotions manager for Nike Philippine­s Inc.

During the presidency of his mother from 1986 to 1992, he joined the Intra-Strata Assurance Corporatio­n, a company owned by his uncle Antolin Oreta Jr. as vice president. From 1993 to 1998, he worked for Central Azucarera de Tarlac, Hacienda Luisita as the executive assistant for administra­tion from 1993 to 1996, then he worked as

Close encounter with coup attempt

Eighteen months into presidency of his mother Corazon Aquino, on August 28, 1987, rebel soldiers led by Gregorio Honasan staged an unsuccessf­ul coup attempt trying to siege Malacanang Palace. PNoy was two blocks from the palace when he came were killed, and the last was wounded protecting which is still embedded in his neck.

Political career

The fourth-generation politician: his great- grandfathe­r, Servillano “Mianong” Aquino, served as a delegate to the Malolos Congress; his grandfathe­r, Benigno Aquino Sr. served as Speaker of the House of Representa­tives of the Philippine­s and his parents were President Corazon Aquino and Senator Benigno “Ninoy” Aquino Jr.

Member of the Liberal Party, PNoy held various positions in the party from being the Secretary General and Vice President for Luzon. Now, he is the chairman of the Liberal Party.

PNo became deputy speaker of the House of Representa­tives on November 8, 2004 but relinquish­ed the post on February 21, 2006 when he joined the Liberal Party in calling for the resignatio­n of then President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo at the height of the Hello Garci scandal. He was also the chairman of the board of the Central Luzon Congressio­nal Caucus.

Barred from running for reelection to the House of Representa­tives to represent the 2nd district of Tarlac, due to term limits, PNoy was elected to the Senate of the Philippine­s in the 2007 Philippine midterm election on May 15, 2007 under the banner of the Genuine Opposition, a coalition comprising a number of parties, including his own Liberal Party. Aquino

Reaching out to his enemy

During the Senatorial campaign, PNoy reached out to his former enemy, Senator Gregorio Honasan, supporting his applicatio­n for bail. Aquino told Job Tabada of Cebu Daily News on March 5, 2007:

“I endorse Honasan’s request for bail para was hit by bullets from Honasan’s men in the neck and hips but that’s past now. The principle of my father was ‘Respect the rights even of your enemies.’ Ito ang nagpapatin­gkad ng demokrasya (This is democracy in action.”

Noynoy phenomenon

After the death and funeral of his mother, Pres- identident Corazon Aquino, many people began calling on Aquino to run for President of the Philippine­s.

Edgardo “Eddie” Roces, son of the late Chino Roces, former publisher and owner of The Manila Times, and group of lawyers and activists formed the Noynoy Aquino for President Movement (CAPM), collecting million signatures in order to persuade Aquino to run for President just like whathat Roces’ father, whoho on October 1515, 19851985, 1aunched the Cory Aquino for President Movement, collecting more than one million signatures nationwide, asking Aquino’s mother to run against Ferdinand Marcos in the 1986 presidenti­al snap elections.

On September 9, 2009, Noynoy formally announced his candidacy and on June 9, 2010, the Congress of the Philippine­s proclaimed Benigno Aquino as the President-elect of the Philippine­s following the 2010 election with 15, 208,678 votes.

Trivia about his presidency

At noon on June 30, 2010, Benigno Aquino III became the 15th President of the Philippine­s. He is the third-youngest person to be elected president and the fourth-youngest president after Emilio Aguinaldo, Ramon Magsaysay and Ferdinand Marcos.

unmarried and having no children.

He is the second president not to drink alcohol was Emilio Aguinaldo.

in Malacanang Palace but not as a resident, following Corazon Aquino and Fidel Ramos.


He is the second president to be a child of president to be a child of a former president was President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo, the daughter of President Diosdado Macapagal.

“The only advice I can give you: Live with honor and follow your conscience. There is no greater nation on earth than our Motherland. No greater people than our own. Serve them with all your heart, and with all your might and with all your strength. Son, the ball is now in your hands.”


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