Elpidio R. Quirino

Elpidio Quirino

Second President
Third Philippine Republic
April 17, 1948 - December 30, 1953

"While I recognize the United States as a great builder in this country, I have never surrendered the sovereignty, much less the dignity and future of our country."

        Elpidio Quirino was one of the four Ilocanos who became president of the Philippines. He studied at Aringay Elementary School for his primary education. He attended three different high schools and finally graduated in a school run by Americans in Manila. Like Laurel, Roxas, and Marcos, he finished his law degree at the University of the Philippines and passed the bar exams.

        He worked as private secretary to President Manuel L. Quezon and was later elected representative. He became a member of the Senate for three times in 1925, 1933 and 1945 respectively. During his second term as senator, he was chosen senate president and senate pro tempore on his third term. His rise to power continued. He served as a cabinet member for two years at the same time serving as vice-president. After Roxas' died, he automatically succeeded him as president.

        Among the major decisions he made were the proclamation of amnesty to the members of the Hukbalahap (Hukbong Bayan Laban sa Hapon), the suspension of the privelege of the Writ of Habeas Corpus, establisment of a new land reform agency called Social Amelioration Commission, opposition of the presence of the US Bases, reorganization of the government thru the Reorganization Commission of 1950 and succeeded in preventing United States from claiming the South Harbor as their territory.

        His administration lasted for five years. He ran for presidency but lost to Ramon Magsaysay.

* * * * *