Fidel Valdez Ramos

Engineer and

12th. President of the Republic of the Philippines

Fidel Ramos

Philippines President

Fidel Ramos

Philippines President Born: March 18, 1928; Lingayen, Philippines


BS, West Point Military Academy, 1950; MS (civil engineering), University of Illinois, 1951; Masters in national security administration, National Defense College, Philippines, 1969; MBA, Ateneo de Manila University, 1980 Military Service With Philippines Armed Forces, 1951-91; Commander, Philippine Constabulary, 1970-72; Deputy armed forces chief of staff, 1972-84, 85-86; Acting as chief of staff, 1984-85; Army chief of staff, 1986-88; Secretary of defense, {1988-92)


Soldier , Engineer.


Wife, Amelita Martinez; 5 daughters
Early Years: Served alongside U.S. soliders during Korean War; Commanded a Philippines Armed Forces (AFP) contingent during Vietnam War
Political Career: After long association with Ferdinand Marcos, through support behind opposition leader Corazon Aquino, 1986; Elected president when Aquino's term expired, 1992
Office: Malacanang Palace Compound, J P Laurel St., San Miguel, Manila, Philippines

Related Site:Philippines Government Home Page


Current Biography, 1994; Newsmakers, 1995; Who's Who in the World, 1996

Lieutenant-General Fidel Ramos, president of the Philippines since 1992, is the subject of controversy among his countrymen due to his contradictory past loyalties. He has an apparent commitment to democracy, yet he had a longtime association with the late Philippine dictator Ferdinand Marcos. For 16 years, Ramos headed the Philippine Constabulary -- the country's national police force -- which was responsible for many human rights abuses during the Marcos regime. He also served as vice-chief of the armed forces and was a trusted advisor to Marcos. In fact, the two were cousins. But when the reformist "people power" movement, led by Corazon Aquino, ousted the Marcos regime, Ramos loyally served the Aquino administration.

After she assumed the presidency, Corazon Aquino appointed Gen. Ramos chief of staff of the armed forces. Although some accused him of partisanship, supporters say he was a loyal backer of Aquino, quelling seven coup attempts against the Aquino government. In 1988 she appointed him secretary of defense. He served in that post, but his presidential aspirations were widely recognized. In December 1991, with Corazon Aquino forbidden by law to succeed herself, Ramos declared his candidacy. Aquino did not endorse her colleague and he did not receive the party's nomination. He promptly formed his own independent political organization, and only then did Aquino endorse his presidential bid. Ramos campaigned vigorously among stockbrokers, executives and rural politicians. Although critics reminded voters of Ramos' implementation of martial law under Marcos, he won in a relatively peaceful election.

Ramos made his objectives political and economic stability -- the unification of the country and revival of the Philippine economy. He met with a communist insurgency movement and Islamic separatists and attempted to disband hundreds of warlord groups engaged in smuggling and drug-running. He launched a reform of the notoriously corrupt police force. To improve the economy he increased production of electric power and encouraged international investment.

Most Philippinos have viewed Ramos' accession to the presidency with optimism, and his public approval rating has remained high.

Ramos has long had close ties to the United States. He is a graduate of West Point Military Academy, and later received an M.A. in engineering from the University of Illinois. He also earned an M.B.A. degree. Ramos fought alongside U.S. forces in the Korean War and later commanded a Philippine military contingent in the Vietnam War.