By Fidel V. Ramos
Former Philippine President
“FVR is now being besieged by cascading, emerging dots to be connected, clamoring to be prioritized, and then to be brought to the attention of PRRD….. KAYA NATIN ITO!!!…..”
— Mae Gaffud, Executive Director, RPDEV
We were supposed to continue our column with a Part Two for the 25 March 2018 Manila Bulletin issue re “More Terrorism, World War III, And Natural/Man-Made Calamities?” However, unfolding local and international events overwhelmed our physical capabilities and/or disrupted well laid-out plans. Thus, we have been compelled to refocus our topics on the whirlwind turn of events after 15 March, and to re-invent our people empowerment strategies and also, the citizen, FVR himself.
That too was the date when we launched, at the iconic Manila Polo Club, the delayed 20th Volume of FVR’s collection of essays, speeches and anecdotes titled “Challenges of Change: Life Restarts at 90,” which was co-published with the Sycip, Gorres and Velayo Foundation.
After the book launch, the occasion erupted into a merry reunion of families, relatives, long-time associates, friends, supporters and fans to jointly celebrate former First Lady Ming’s and FVR’s 90th birthdays.
AS CAN BE GLEANED HEREIN, FVR’S CALENDAR OF ACTIVITIES (MINUS THE MANDATORY CLASSIFIED DETAILS) SHOW THAT EVEN PERSONS MUCH YOUNGER IN AGE WOULD HAVE NEEDED DURABLE STAMINA TO KEEP UP THEREWITH, THUS:
BOOK LAUNCH AND JOINT BIRTHDAY CELEBRATION
15 March (Thu) –Acted on pending matters; answered phone calls and emails; attended to “walk-ins”; finalized and submitted the next Sunday’s article for the Manila Bulletin @ RPDEV’s Makati Office.
Vol. 20 Book Launch/AMR-FVR Joint 90th Birthday Celebration followed by entertainment @ Manila Polo Club, Forbes Park, Makati City.
16 March (Fri) –Early a.m. Ceremonial tee-off for FILVETS Golf Tournament “Gen. Manuel Yan Cup” @ Manila Golf Club, Forbes Park, Makati City.
Attended to “walk-ins” and researched topics for the succeeding Sunday article for Manila Bulletin @ RPDEV’s Makati Office.
17 March (Sat) – Early a.m. ceremonial tee-off at “FVR Cup” @ Alabang Country Club, AAV, Muntinlupa City.
Interment of the late Philippine Tourism Authority (DoT) CEO Ed Joaquin @ Loyola Memorial Park, Marikina City.
USMA (West Point) Founders’ Day Lunch @ Camp Aguinaldo, Q.C.
Awarding Ceremonies of “FVR Cup” @ Alabang Country Club, AAV, Muntinlupa City.
18 March (Sun) – 85th anniversary Morning Worship Service at the Cosmopolitan Church (UCCP).
Granddaughter Jelly Ramos-Jalasco’s “surprise” arrival (from Chicago City, USA) at FVR family reunion, AAV, Muntinlupa City.
19 March (Mon) – Acted on pending matters; answered phone calls and emails; attended to “walk-ins”; prepared/ edited draft of next Sunday’s article for Manila Bulletin @ RPDEV’s Makati Office.
20 March (Tue) – “2nd Gov. Gabby Singson Honesty Cup” @ Wack-Wack Golf Club, Mandaluyong City.
Senator/my sister Letty Ramos-Shahani 1st death anniversary @ Manila Memorial Park, Parañaque City.
Activities @ RPDEV Office (same as for 19 March).
21 March (Wed) – Activities @ RPDEV Office (same as for 19 March).
22 March (Thu) – Medical examinations from early a.m. to lunchtime @ Makati Medical Center.
Note: House of Reps announced “FVR being summoned for inquiry” re lease of government lot on Roxas Boulevard.
Activities @ RPDEV Office (same as for 19 March).
23 March (Fri) – Grandson Patrick Ramos-Jalasco’s birthday lunch in AAV, Muntinlupa City.
Note: House of Reps withdrew previous summons for FVR re committee hearing in-aid-of-legislation cited above.
Physical therapy (walk, stretch, inhale-exhale exercises, record vital body indicators, etc. c/o Makati Med and Asian Hospital).
Activities @ RPDEV Office (same for 19 March plus researched topics for succeeding Sunday articles).
Reunion of former FVR appointments/foreign affairs staffs @ Amb. Ed Malaya’s residence, Pacific Village, Muntinlupa City.
24 March (Sat) – Early a.m. golf game at Camp Aguinaldo, Q.C.
Lunch with PMA veterans/other retirees
25 March (Sun) – “Domingo de Ramos” or Palm Sunday @ Cosmopolitan Church (UCCP), Anniversary-Yearbook launch and conferment of the “Pillars of Faith” Awards (represented by cousin Inday Valdez-Timtiman, Chair, Church Council).
Capas Freedom March assembly @ MacArthur Highway then to National POW Shrine as Guest of Honor and Speaker, Camp O’Donnell, Tarlac
26 March (Mon) – Activities @ RPDEV Office (same as for 19 March)
Bangladesh National Day @ Shangri-La, Makati (regrets)
HOLY WEEK OBSERVANCE
27 March (Tue) –Activities @ RPDEV Office (same as for 19 March)
28 March (Wed) –Ash Wednesday. Activities @ RPDEV Office (same as for 19 March)
29 March (Thu) –Holy Thursday. Activities @ RPDEV Office (same as for 19 March
30 March (Fri) –Good Friday. Granddaughter Jelly Ramos-Jalasco’s birthday lunch
Visited St. James Cathedral @ AAV, Muntinlupa City
31 March (Sat) –Grandson Bryan Ramos-Jalasco’s birthday event
Golf game at Camp Aguinaldo, Q.C.
Lunch with PMA veterans/other retirees
01 April (Sun) ALLELUJIAH!!! 0400H a.m. National Council of Churches of the Philippines 69th Ecumenical Easter Sunrise Worship Service @ Amoranto Sports Complex, Don Alejandro Roces Avenue, Quezon City
Lunch hosted by UCCP chair, Sandigan Justice Raoul Victorino @ Roces McDo. (FYI, RV is a nephew of the late Senate President Jovito Salonga).
BOAO FORUM FOR ASIA, HAINAN AND 10TH FVR GOLF CUP, TAIWAN
Another welcome development was the editorial announcement “Duterte in Boao” (Malaya, 02 April 2018), to wit: “President Duterte is attending the Boao Forum for Asia (BFA) on the island province of Hainan, China….. with an open mind, eager to hear and learn from that meeting what the Philippines might profit from the experience and insights of great and results-driven minds, leaders in the fields of governance, economics, trade and industry, technology, and innovation.
“The Forum, slated from 09 to 10 April, is the first leg of Duterte’s foreign travels after his Holy Week cum birthday break, and Malacañang is proud to announce this trip as potentially productive for the President.
“Duterte has astutely judged that the 2018 Boao Forum is worth attending, giving this Asian version of Davos the importance that it deserves. Davos, being in Europe, is understandably out of Duterte’s circle of priorities.
“The Hainan conference and Duterte’s attendance there come at a crucial and auspicious time, for 2018 is the year many big-ticket projects of the Administration’s ‘Build, Build, Build’ economic tack become a reality, thanks to the Philippines-China cooperation…..”
Re the BFA, FVR was deeply saddened, however. Having been the Chairman/Co-founder of the BFA for eight years (2002-2010) and also the Chair of its Council of Advisors thereafter to-date, FVR had been physically overwhelmed by the sudden convergence of personal-family-spiritual-professional-social-civic obligations that he had to attend during the near-simultaneous observance of Holy Week, Veterans Memorial Week and AMR/FVR’s joint birthday events. This resulted in FVR’s inability to join President Duterte on this auspicious trip to Boao due to strict doctors’ orders and the stern warnings of his “Dakilang Alalay” (XFL Ming). So, the word went out….. SO SORRY NA LANG!!
All along and on top of all that, RPDEV was also busy coordinating with various entities re the requirements of this year’s Philippine contingent – composed of sportspeople, businessmen and professionals from various parts of the Philippines – who wanted to join the 10th Taiwan-Philippines Friendship Golf Tournament (FVR Cup) to be held next week in Taiwan. This is an annual event that provides a terrific opportunity for business networking, new products search, plus beneficial sports competition and people-to-people bonding with Taiwanese counterparts.
Phone calls, trips to crowded streets and offices, and administrative matters daunted FVR because of the imminent BIR deadline for the submission of ITRs
Lastly, FVR received a letter last 11 April which reads:
“To my dear Tita Ming and my ‘Boss,’
“It was not necessary to give me a gift for helping to celebrate your birthdays. It was my pleasure for serving you two people who taught me how to love other people and our country. I want to thank you both for the beautiful examples you have shown me and the beautiful days you have afforded me.
“May the two of you live to be the happiest, the greatest, and the loveliest people you have ever been to us!
“My love and prayers for you both and your lovely family.
“(Sgd) Ching Montinola”
THIS LAST ACCOLADE FROM OUR FORMER “25TH SENATOR (PRESIDENTIAL LEGISLATIVE LIAISON OFFICER)” INDEED TAKES THE CAKE!!!
PWEDE BA, ISA PA (MAY WE PLEASE HAVE ONE MORE PIECE)???
THANK YOU EVERYONE FOR EVERYTHING AND MABUHAY TO ALL. ABOVE ALL ELSE, LET US PRAY TO THE GOOD LORD AS WE PERFORM, AND PERFORM AS WE PRAY!!!
THERE IS REALLY NO TIMEOUT FROM WORK FOR THE WEARY. WOW!!!
HOW TRUE IS THE ABOVE??? ASK MAE GAFFUD, GENERAL RENE DE VILLA, X-EXECUTIVE SECRETARY EDDIE ERMITA, X-MAYOR/CONG. BENJIE LIM, ATTY. NICK LAGUSTAN, P/GENERAL GERRY KAGAOAN, GENERAL MITCH TEMPLO, GENERAL CHARLIE TAÑEGA, GOLFER MEL BERGADO, SECRETARY JUN YASAY, COL. DENNIS ACOP, COL./ATTY. FREDDIE MISON, JELLY/PATRICK/BRYAN RAMOS-JALASCO, ARCHIT BARTOLOME, RANJIT/CHANDA/LILA RAMOS-SHAHANI, DRA. REGIE CANLAS, CONG. LEOPOLDO BATAOIL, AMBASSADOR ED MALAYA, GOLF MANAGER BONES FLORO, GENERAL ERNESTO CAROLINA, SECRETARY MINA GABOR, INDAY VALDEZ-TIMTIMAN, JUSTICE RAOUL VICTORINO, AND CHING MONTINOLA. THEY’RE ALL STILL AROUND!!
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