Manuel Roxas
Overview
 
Manuel Acuña Roxas was the first president of the independent Third Republic of the Philippines and fifth president overall. He served as president from the granting of independence in 1946 until his abrupt death in 1948. His term as president of the Philippines was also the shortest, lasting 1 year 10 months and 18 days.
Manuel A. Roxas, third and last President of the Commonwealth and the first of the Republic of the Philippines, was born to Gerardo Roxas, Sr.
Encyclopedia
Manuel Acuña Roxas was the first president of the independent Third Republic of the Philippines and fifth president overall. He served as president from the granting of independence in 1946 until his abrupt death in 1948. His term as president of the Philippines was also the shortest, lasting 1 year 10 months and 18 days.

His Early life and career

Manuel A. Roxas, third and last President of the Commonwealth and the first of the Republic of the Philippines, was born to Gerardo Roxas, Sr. and Rosario Acuña on January 1, 1892 in Capiz (now Roxas City). He was a posthumous child, for his father Gerardo had been mortally wounded by Spanish guardias civiles the year before, leaving him and his older brother Mamerto to be raised by their mother and Don Eleuterio, their maternal grandfather.

Roxas received his early education in the public schools of Capiz, and at age 12, attended St. Joseph’s Academy in HongKong. But after homesickness, he went back to Capiz. He eventually moved to Manila High School (later named the Araullo High School), graduating with highest honors in 1909.

Roxas began his law studies at a private law school established by George Malcolm, the first dean of the University of the Philippines College of Law. On his second year, he enrolled at U.P., where he was elected president of both his class and the Student Council. In 1913, Roxas obtained his law degree, graduated class valedictorian, and subsequently topped the first bar examinations with a grade of 92%, becoming the first ever bar topnotcher of the Philippines.

House of Representatives

Roxas occupied more important positions in the Philippine government than any other Filipino had ever held before him. For some thirty-six years he exercised authority as public official in various capacities, capping these with the highest office in the land. Starting in 1917 as a member of the municipal council of Capiz, he became the youngest governor of his province and served in this capacity from 1919 to 1922. The Roxas potential for national leadership became evident when he was elected President of the national league of governors during his term as provincial head.

He was later elected to the Philippine House of Representatives in 1922, and for twelve consecutive years was Speaker of the House. He was member of the Constitutional Convention 1934 to 1935, Secretary of Finance, Chairman of the National Economic Council, Chairman of the National Development Company and many other government corporations and agencies, Brigadier General in the USAFFE, and Guerilla leader.

Senate

After the amendments to the 1935 Philippine Constitution were approved in 1941, he was elected (1941) to the Philippine Senate, but was unable to serve until 1945 because of the outbreak of World War II.
Having enrolled prior to World War II as an officer in the reserves, he was made liaison officer between the Commonwealth government and the United States Army Forces in the Far East headquarters of General Douglas MacArthur
Douglas MacArthur
General of the Army Douglas MacArthur was an American general and field marshal of the Philippine Army. He was a Chief of Staff of the United States Army during the 1930s and played a prominent role in the Pacific theater during World War II. He received the Medal of Honor for his service in the...

. He accompanied President Quezon to Corregidor
Corregidor
Corregidor Island, locally called Isla ng Corregidor, is a lofty island located at the entrance of Manila Bay in southwestern part of Luzon Island in the Philippines. Due to this location, Corregidor was fortified with several coastal artillery and ammunition magazines to defend the entrance of...

 where he supervised the destruction of Philippine currency to prevent its capture by the Japanese. When Quezon left Corregidor, Roxas went to Mindanao to direct the resistance there. It was prior to Quezon's departure that he was made Executive Secretary and designated as successor to the presidency in case Quezon or Vice-President Sergio Osmeña
Sergio Osmeña
Sergio Osmeña y Suico was a Filipino politician who served as the 4th President of the Philippines from 1944 to 1946. He was Vice President under Manuel L. Quezon, and rose to the presidency upon Quezon's death in 1944, being the oldest Philippine president to hold office at age 65...

 were captured or killed. Roxas was captured (1942) by the Japanese invasion forces.

When the Congress of the Philippines was convened in 1945, the legislators elected in 1941 chose Roxas as Senate President. In the Philippine national elections of 1946
Philippine general election, 1946
The Elections for the members of the Senate held on April 23, 1946 .-Background:Soon after the reconstitution of the Commonwealth Government in 1945 Senators Manuel Roxas, Elpidio Quirino and their allies called for the holding on an early national election to choose the president and vice...

, Roxas ran for president as the nominee of the liberal wing of the Nacionalista Party
Liberal Party (Philippines)
The Liberal Party of the Philippines is a liberal party in the Philippines, founded by then senators Senate President Manuel Roxas, Senate President Pro-Tempore Elpidio Quirino, and former 9th Senatorial District Senator Jose Avelino, on November 24, 1945 by a breakaway Liberal group from the...

. He had the staunch support of General MacArthur. His opponent was Sergio Osmeña
Sergio Osmeña
Sergio Osmeña y Suico was a Filipino politician who served as the 4th President of the Philippines from 1944 to 1946. He was Vice President under Manuel L. Quezon, and rose to the presidency upon Quezon's death in 1944, being the oldest Philippine president to hold office at age 65...

, who refused to campaign, saying that the Filipino people knew his reputation. However, in the April 23, 1946 election, Roxas won 54 percent of the vote, and the Liberal Party won a majority in the legislature. When the Philippines gained independence from the United States on July 4, 1946, he became the first president of the new republic.

Presidential election of 1946

On 1946, at the height of the last Commonwealth
Commonwealth of the Philippines
The Commonwealth of the Philippines was a designation of the Philippines from 1935 to 1946 when the country was a commonwealth of the United States. The Commonwealth was created by the Tydings-McDuffie Act, which was passed by the U.S. Congress in 1934. When Manuel L...

 elections, subjected for replacing Sergio Osmeña
Sergio Osmeña
Sergio Osmeña y Suico was a Filipino politician who served as the 4th President of the Philippines from 1944 to 1946. He was Vice President under Manuel L. Quezon, and rose to the presidency upon Quezon's death in 1944, being the oldest Philippine president to hold office at age 65...

 in office, Senate President Roxas and his friends bolted from the Nacionalista Party
Nacionalista Party
The Nacionalista Party is the oldest political party in the Philippines today and was responsible for leading the country throughout the majority of the 20th century since its founding in 1907...

 and founded their own Liberal Party
Liberal Party (Philippines)
The Liberal Party of the Philippines is a liberal party in the Philippines, founded by then senators Senate President Manuel Roxas, Senate President Pro-Tempore Elpidio Quirino, and former 9th Senatorial District Senator Jose Avelino, on November 24, 1945 by a breakaway Liberal group from the...

. Roxas then became the standard-bearer for presidency for the Liberal Party and Elpidio Quirino
Elpidio Quirino
Elpidio Rivera Quirino was a Filipino politician, and the sixth President of the Philippines.A lawyer by profession, Quirino entered politics when he became a representative of Ilocos Sur from 1919 to 1925. He was then elected as senator from 1925–1931...

 for vice-president. The Nacionalistas, on the other hand, had Osmeña for president and Senator Eulogio Rodriguez
Eulogio Rodriguez
Eulogio "Amang" Adona Rodríguez, Sr. was a Filipino politician, the longest serving Senate President after Manuel L...

 for vice-president. On April 23, 1946, Roxas and Quirino won the ticket.

On May 8, 1946, President-elect Roxas, accompanied by US High Commissioner
High Commissioner to the Philippines
High Commissioner to the Philippines was the title of the personal representative of the President of the United States to the Commonwealth of the Philippines during the period 1935-1946. The office was created by the Tydings-McDuffie Act of 1934, which provided for a period of transition from...

 Paul V. McNutt
Paul V. McNutt
Paul Vories McNutt was an American politician who served as the 34th Governor of Indiana during the Great Depression, high commissioner to the Philippines, administrator of the Federal Security Agency, chairman of the War Manpower Commission and ambassador to the Philippines.-Family and...

, enplaned for the United States to discuss with the American authorities the vital matters affecting the Philippines. On May 28, 1946, Roxas was inaugurated amidst impressive ceremonies as the last President of the Commonwealth of the Philippines. The inaugural ceremonies were held on the grounds of ruined, shell-blasted Legislative Building
National Museum of the Philippines
The Museum of the Filipino People is a department of the National Museum of the Philippines that houses the Anthropology and Archaeology Divisions of the National Museum. It is located in the Agrifina Circle, Rizal Park, Manila adjacent to the main National Museum building...

 and were witnessed by huge crowds of around 200,000 people. He delineated the main policies of his administration, mainly, closer ties with the United States, adherence to the newly-created United Nations Organization, reconstruction of war-devastated country, relief for the masses, social justice to the working class, maintenance of peace and order, preservation of individual rights and liberties of the citizenry and honesty and efficiency of government office.

Administration and cabinet

OFFICE NAME TERM
President
President of the Philippines
The President of the Philippines is the head of state and head of government of the Philippines. The president leads the executive branch of the Philippine government and is the commander-in-chief of the Armed Forces of the Philippines...

 
Manuel Roxas 1946–1948
Vice-President  Elpidio Quirino
Elpidio Quirino
Elpidio Rivera Quirino was a Filipino politician, and the sixth President of the Philippines.A lawyer by profession, Quirino entered politics when he became a representative of Ilocos Sur from 1919 to 1925. He was then elected as senator from 1925–1931...

1946–1948
Secretary of Foreign Affairs  Elpidio Quirino
Elpidio Quirino
Elpidio Rivera Quirino was a Filipino politician, and the sixth President of the Philippines.A lawyer by profession, Quirino entered politics when he became a representative of Ilocos Sur from 1919 to 1925. He was then elected as senator from 1925–1931...

1946–1948
Secretary of the Interior  José Zulueta
Jose Zulueta
Jose Zulueta was a Philippine senator who was elected as Senate President. He is also a renowned scholar, bibliographer, lawyer, librarian, and journalist who documented the military activities during the Philippine revolution.- Early life :...

1946–1948
Secretary of Finance  Miguel Cuaderno 1946–1948
Secretary of Justice  Ramón Ozaeta 1946–1948
Secretary of Agriculture and Commerce  Mariano Garchitorena
Mariano Garchitorena
Mariano Garchitorena was a Filipino politician of Spanish-French descent. He was born in Tigaon, Camarines Sur. He was known as Don Mariano C. Garchitorena. He was the son of Don Andres Garchitorena and a French lady, Margarite Chereau. He was married to Dona Caridad Pamintuan of Pampanga, and...

1946–1948
Secretary of Public Works and Communications  Ricardo Nepumoceno 1946–1948
Secretary of Instruction  Manuel Gallego 1946–1948
Secretary of Labor  Pedro Magsalin 1946–1948
Secretary of National Defense  Ruperto Kangleon
Ruperto Kangleon
Ruperto Cadava Kangleon was a Filipino military figure and politician. He was a native of Macrohon in what is now the province of Southern Leyte....

1946–1948
Secretary of Health and Public Welfare  Antonio Villarama 1946–1948
General Auditing Office  Sotero Cabahug 1945–1946
Secretary to the President  José S. Reyes 1945–1946
Chief of the Executive Office  Emilio M. Abello 1946–1948
Resident Commissioner
Resident Commissioner
Resident Commissioner is the title of several, quite different types of Commissioner in overseas possession or protectorate of the British Crown or of the United States.-British English:...

 
Carlos P. Romulo
Carlos P. Rómulo
Carlos Peña Rómulo was a Filipino diplomat, politician, soldier, journalist and author. He was a reporter at 16, a newspaper editor by the age of 20, and a publisher at 32...

1945–1946


Last President of the Commonwealth (1946)

Roxas served as the President of the Commonwealth of the Philippines in a brief period, from his subsequent election on May 28, 1946 to July 4, 1946, the scheduled date of the proclamation of Philippine Independence. Roxas prepared the groundwork for the advent of a free and independent Philippines, assisted by the Congress (reorganized May 25, 1946), with Senator José Avelino
José Avelino
José Dira Avelino . The first President of the Senate of the First Republic of the Philippines under the presidency of Manuel Roxas. He was President Pro-tempore to President Manuel Quezon prior to the establishment of the Commonwealth.Avelino was born in a town called Calbayog in Samar to...

 as the Senate President and Congressman Eugenio Perez
Eugenio Perez
Eugenio Pérez was a Filipino politician who served as Speaker of the House of Representatives of the Philippines from 1946 to 1953. He was a member of the Liberal Party, whose president he served as during his term as Speaker.-Early life:Pérez was born in San Carlos, Pangasinan...

 as the House of Representatives Speaker. On June 3, 1946, Roxas appeared for the first time before the joint session
Joint session
A joint session or joint convention is, most broadly, when two normally-separate decision-making groups meet together, often in a special session or other extraordinary meeting, for a specific purpose....

 of the Congress to deliver his first state of the nation address. Among other things, he told the members of the Congress the grave problems and difficulties the Philippines are set to face and reports of his special trip to the United States–the approval for independence.

On June 21, he reappeared into another joint session of the Congress and urged the acceptance of two important laws passed by the Congress of the United States on April 30, 1946 to the Philippine lands. They are the Philippine Rehabilitation Act
Tydings-McDuffie Act
The Tydings-McDuffie Act approved on March 24, 1934 was a United States federal law which provided for self-government of the Philippines and for Filipino independence after a period of ten years. It was authored by Maryland Senator Millard E...

 and the Philippine Trade Act
Bell Trade Act
The Bell Trade Act of 1946, also known as the Philippine Trade Act was an act passed by the United States Congress specifying the economic conditions governing the independence of the Philippines from the United States....

. Both recommendations were accepted by the Congress.

First president of the Third Republic (1946–1948)

Manuel Roxas' term as the President of the Commonwealth of the Philippines
Commonwealth of the Philippines
The Commonwealth of the Philippines was a designation of the Philippines from 1935 to 1946 when the country was a commonwealth of the United States. The Commonwealth was created by the Tydings-McDuffie Act, which was passed by the U.S. Congress in 1934. When Manuel L...

 ended on the morning of July 4, 1946 when the Third Republic of the Philippines was inaugurated and Philippine Independence from the United States proclaimed, amidts plaudits and prayers of some 300,000 people, 21-gun salute
21-gun salute
Gun salutes are the firing of cannons or firearms as a military or naval honor.The custom stems from naval tradition, where a warship would fire its cannons harmlessly out to sea, until all ammunition was spent, to show that it was disarmed, signifying the lack of hostile intent...

 and joyous echoes of church bells. Roxas was then inaugurated as the new and first president of the new Republic.

The inaugural ceremonies took place at Luneta Park, Manila
Manila
Manila is the capital of the Philippines. It is one of the sixteen cities forming Metro Manila.Manila is located on the eastern shores of Manila Bay and is bordered by Navotas and Caloocan to the north, Quezon City to the northeast, San Juan and Mandaluyong to the east, Makati on the southeast,...

. On the grandstand there were around 3,000 guests and notables, consisted of President Roxas and his cabinet; the last US High Commissioner and first American Ambassador of US to the Philippines Paul McNutt; General Douglas MacArthur
Douglas MacArthur
General of the Army Douglas MacArthur was an American general and field marshal of the Philippine Army. He was a Chief of Staff of the United States Army during the 1930s and played a prominent role in the Pacific theater during World War II. He received the Medal of Honor for his service in the...

 (coming from Tokyo); United States Postmaster General
United States Postmaster General
The United States Postmaster General is the Chief Executive Officer of the United States Postal Service. The office, in one form or another, is older than both the United States Constitution and the United States Declaration of Independence...

 Robert E. Hannegan
Robert E. Hannegan
Robert Emmet Hannegan was a St. Louis, Missouri politician who served as Commissioner of Internal Revenue from October 1943 to January 1944. He also served as chairman of the Democratic National Committee from 1944 to 1947 and United States Postmaster General from 1945 to 1947...

; a delegation from US Congress headed by Tydings-McDuffie Act
Tydings-McDuffie Act
The Tydings-McDuffie Act approved on March 24, 1934 was a United States federal law which provided for self-government of the Philippines and for Filipino independence after a period of ten years. It was authored by Maryland Senator Millard E...

 author Maryland
Maryland
Maryland is a U.S. state located in the Mid Atlantic region of the United States, bordering Virginia, West Virginia, and the District of Columbia to its south and west; Pennsylvania to its north; and Delaware to its east...

 Senator Millard Tydings
Millard Tydings
Millard Evelyn Tydings was an attorney, author, soldier, state legislator, and served as a Democratic Representative and Senator in the United States Congress from Maryland.-Early life:...

 and Missouri
Missouri
Missouri is a US state located in the Midwestern United States, bordered by Iowa, Illinois, Kentucky, Tennessee, Arkansas, Oklahoma, Kansas and Nebraska. With a 2010 population of 5,988,927, Missouri is the 18th most populous state in the nation and the fifth most populous in the Midwest. It...

 Representative C. Jasper Bell
C. Jasper Bell
Charles Jasper Bell was a U.S. Representative from Missouri.Born in Lake City, Colorado, Bell attended the country schools in Jackson County, Missouri, Lees Summit High School, and the University of Missouri...

, author of Bell Trade Act
Bell Trade Act
The Bell Trade Act of 1946, also known as the Philippine Trade Act was an act passed by the United States Congress specifying the economic conditions governing the independence of the Philippines from the United States....

 and former civil governor-general
Governor-General of the Philippines
The Governor-General of the Philippines was the title of the government executive during the colonial period of the Philippines, governed mainly by Spain and the United States, and briefly by Great Britain, from 1565 to 1935....

 Francis Burton Harrison
Francis Burton Harrison
Francis Burton Harrison was an American statesman who served in the United States House of Representatives and appointed Governor-General of the Philippines by President of the United States Woodrow Wilson...

.
Economy

No sooner had the fanfare of the independence
Independence
Independence is a condition of a nation, country, or state in which its residents and population, or some portion thereof, exercise self-government, and usually sovereignty, over its territory....

 festivities ended that the government and the people quickly put all hands to work in the tasks of rescuing the country from its dire economic straits. Reputed to be the most bombed and destroyed country in the world, the Philippines was in a sorry mess. Only Stalingrad and Warsaw
Warsaw
Warsaw is the capital and largest city of Poland. It is located on the Vistula River, roughly from the Baltic Sea and from the Carpathian Mountains. Its population in 2010 was estimated at 1,716,855 residents with a greater metropolitan area of 2,631,902 residents, making Warsaw the 10th most...

, for instance, could compare with Manila
Manila
Manila is the capital of the Philippines. It is one of the sixteen cities forming Metro Manila.Manila is located on the eastern shores of Manila Bay and is bordered by Navotas and Caloocan to the north, Quezon City to the northeast, San Juan and Mandaluyong to the east, Makati on the southeast,...

 in point of destruction. All over the country more than a million people were unaccounted for. The war casualties as such could very well reached the two million mark. Conservative estimates had it that the Philippines
Philippines
The Philippines , officially known as the Republic of the Philippines , is a country in Southeast Asia in the western Pacific Ocean. To its north across the Luzon Strait lies Taiwan. West across the South China Sea sits Vietnam...

 had lost about two thirds of her material wealth.

The country was facing near bankruptcy. There was no national economy, no export trade. Indeed, production for exports had not been restored. On the other hand, imports were to reach the amount of three million dollars. There was need of immediate aid from the United Nations Relief and Rehabilitation Administration
United Nations Relief and Rehabilitation Administration
The United Nations Relief and Rehabilitation Administration was an international relief agency, largely dominated by the United States but representing 44 nations. Founded in 1943, it became part of the United Nations in 1945, was especially active in 1945 and 1946, and largely shut down...

. Something along this line was obtained. again, loans for the United States, as well as some increase in the national revenues, were to help the new Republic.

President Roxas, with bold steps, met the situation with the same confidence he exuded in his inaugural address, when he said: "The system of free but guided enterprise is our system". Among the main remedies proposed was the establishment of the Philippine Rehabilitation Finance Corporation. This entity would be responsible for the construction of twelve thousand houses and for the grant of easy-term loans in the amount of 177,000,000 pesos. Another proposal was the creation of the Central Bank of the Philippines to help stabilize the Philippine dollar reserves and coordinate and the nations banking activities gearing them to the economic progress.

Concentrating on the sugar industry, President Roxas would exert such efforts as to succeed in increasing production from 13,000 tons at the time of the Philippine liberation to an all-high of one million tons.
Reconstruction after the war

The postwar
World War II
World War II, or the Second World War , was a global conflict lasting from 1939 to 1945, involving most of the world's nations—including all of the great powers—eventually forming two opposing military alliances: the Allies and the Axis...

 Philippines had burned cities and towns, ruined farms and factories, blasted roads and bridges, shattered industries and commerce, and thousands of massacred victims. The war had paralyzed the educational system, where 80% of the school buildings, their equipments, laboratories and furniture were destroyed. Numberless books, invaluable documents and works of art, irreplaceable historical relics and family heirloom
Heirloom
In popular usage, an heirloom is something, perhaps an antique or some kind of jewelry, that has been passed down for generations through family members....

s, hundreds of churches and temples were burned. The reconstruction of the damaged school buildings alone cost more than Php
Philippine peso
The peso is the currency of the Philippines. It is subdivided into 100 centavos . Before 1967, the language used on the banknotes and coins was English and so "peso" was the name used...

 126,000,000.

The new Republic began to function on an annual deficit of over Php 200,000,000 with little prospect of a balanced budget for some years to come. Manila
Manila
Manila is the capital of the Philippines. It is one of the sixteen cities forming Metro Manila.Manila is located on the eastern shores of Manila Bay and is bordered by Navotas and Caloocan to the north, Quezon City to the northeast, San Juan and Mandaluyong to the east, Makati on the southeast,...

 and other cities then were infested with criminal gangs which used techniques of American gangster
Gangster
A gangster is a criminal who is a member of a gang. Some gangs are considered to be part of organized crime. Gangsters are also called mobsters, a term derived from mob and the suffix -ster....

s in some activities–bank hold-ups, kidnapping
Kidnapping
In criminal law, kidnapping is the taking away or transportation of a person against that person's will, usually to hold the person in false imprisonment, a confinement without legal authority...

 and burglaries. In rural regions, especially the provinces of Central Luzon
Central Luzon
Central Luzon , also known as Region III , is an administrative division or region of the Republic of the Philippines, primarily serve to organize the 7 provinces of the vast central plain of the island of Luzon , for administrative convenience...

 and the Southern Tagalog
Southern Tagalog
Southern Tagalog, or Region IV, was a region of the Philippines that is now composed of Region IV-A and Region IV-B . Region IV was split into the two regions on May 17, 2002...

 regions, the Hukbalahap
Hukbalahap
The Hukbalahap , was the military arm of the Communist Party of the Philippines , formed in 1942 to fight the Japanese Empire's occupation of the Philippines during World War II. It fought a second war from 1946 to 1954 against the pro-Western leaders of their newly independent country...

s and brigands terrorized towns and barrio
Barrio
Barrio is a Spanish word meaning district or neighborhood.-Usage:In its formal usage in English, barrios are generally considered cohesive places, sharing, for example, a church and traditions such as feast days...

s.
Agrarian reform

In 1946, shortly after his induction to Presidency, Manuel Roxas proclaimed the Rice Share Tenancy Act of 1933 effective throughout the country. However problems of land tenure
Land tenure
Land tenure is the name given, particularly in common law systems, to the legal regime in which land is owned by an individual, who is said to "hold" the land . The sovereign monarch, known as The Crown, held land in its own right. All private owners are either its tenants or sub-tenants...

 continued. In fact these became worse in certain areas. Among the remedial measures enacted was Republic Act No. 1946 likewise known as the Tenant Act which provided for a 70–30 sharing arrangements and regulated share-tenancy contracts. It was passed to resolve the ongoing peasant unrest in Central Luzon.
Amnesty proclamation

President Roxas, on January 28, 1948, granted full amnesty to all so-called Philippine collaborators, many of whom were on trial or awaiting to be tried, particularly former President Jose P. Laurel
Jose P. Laurel
José Paciano Laurel y García was the president of the Republic of the Philippines, a Japanese-sponsored administration during World War II, from 1943 to 1945...

 (1943–1945). The Amnesty Proclamation did not apply to those "collaborators", who were charged with the commission of common crimes, such as murder, rape, and arson. The presidential decision did much to heal a standing wound that somehow threatened to divide the people's sentiments. It was a much-called for measure to bring about a closer unity in the trying times when such was most needed for the progress of the nation.
HUKS outlawed

Utterly disgusted with the crimes being committed by HUKBALAHAP
Hukbalahap
The Hukbalahap , was the military arm of the Communist Party of the Philippines , formed in 1942 to fight the Japanese Empire's occupation of the Philippines during World War II. It fought a second war from 1946 to 1954 against the pro-Western leaders of their newly independent country...

 or HUKS and in possession of the incontrovertible evidence of the subversive character of the same, President Roxas, on March 6, 1948, in a dramatic gesture, issued a Proclamation outlawing Huks' movement, making it a crime to belong to the same. The declaration was hailed by all responsible and peace-loving elements. The same had become imperative in view of the resurgence of Huk depredations, following the unseating of the seven Communists, led by Huk Supremo Luis Taruc
Luis Taruc
Luis Taruc was a Filipino political figure and communist insurgent. He was the leader of the Hukbalahap rebel group between 1942 and 1954. His involvement with the movement came after his initiation to the problems of agrarian Filipinos when he was a student in the early 1930s...

 through acts of terrorism.
Treaty of General Relations

On August 5, 1946, the Congress of the Philippines
Congress of the Philippines
The Congress of the Philippines is the national legislature of the Republic of the Philippines. It is a bicameral body consisting of the Senate , and the House of Representatives although commonly in the Philippines the term congress refers to the latter.The Senate is composed of 24 senators half...

 ratified the Treaty of General Relations that had been entered into by and between the Republic of the Philippines and the United States on July 4, 1946. Aside from withdrawing her sovereignty from the Philippines and recognizing her independence, the Treaty reserved for the United States some bases for the mutual protection of both countries; consented that the United States represent the Philippines in countries where the latter had not yet established diplomatic representation; made the Philippines assume all debts and obligations of the former government in the Philippines; and provided for the settlement of property rights of the citizens of both countries.
United States military bases


Although Roxas was successful in getting rehabilitation funds from the United States after independence, he was forced to concede military bases (23 of which were leased for 99 years), trade restriction for the Philippine citizens, and special privileges for U.S. property owner and investor.
Parity Rights Amendment

On March 11, 1947, the tokwa Filipino people, heeding Roxas' persuasive harangue, ratified in a nationwide plebiscite the "parity amendment
Philippine Parity Rights plebiscite, 1947
A plebiscite on the amendment to the Constitution pursuant to resolution of Congress dated September 18, 1946, granting United States Citizens right to the disposition and utilization of Philippine natural resources or the Parity Rights. This occurred on March 11, 1947.-Results:A number of...

" to the 1935 Constitution, granting United States citizens the right to dispose and utilize of Philippine natural resources, or through parity rights. The night before the plebiscite day, Roxas narrowly escaped an assassination by a disgruntled Tondo
Tondo, Manila
Tondo is a district of Manila, Philippines. The locale has existed prior to the arrival of the Spanish, referred to as "Tundun" in the Laguna Copperplate Inscription. One of the most densely populated areas of land in the world, Tondo is located in the northwest portion of the city and is primarily...

 barber, Julio Guillen, who hurled a grenade
Grenade
A grenade is a small explosive device that is projected a safe distance away by its user. Soldiers called grenadiers specialize in the use of grenades. The term hand grenade refers any grenade designed to be hand thrown. Grenade Launchers are firearms designed to fire explosive projectile grenades...

 on the platform at Plaza Miranda immediately after the President addressed the rally of citizens.

Controversies

His administration was marred by graft and corruption; moreover, the abuses of the provincial military police contributed to the rise of the left-wing (Huk) movement in the countryside. His heavy-handed attempts to crush the Huks led to widespread peasant disaffection.

The good record of Roxas administration was marred by two failures: the failure to curb graft and corruption in the government, as evidenced by the Surplus War Property scandal, the Chinese immigration scandal and the School supplies scandal; and the failure to check and stop the communist Hukbalahap
Hukbalahap
The Hukbalahap , was the military arm of the Communist Party of the Philippines , formed in 1942 to fight the Japanese Empire's occupation of the Philippines during World War II. It fought a second war from 1946 to 1954 against the pro-Western leaders of their newly independent country...

 movement.

Death

Roxas did not finish his term that was expected to end by 1950 because he died of myocardial infarction
Myocardial infarction
Myocardial infarction or acute myocardial infarction , commonly known as a heart attack, results from the interruption of blood supply to a part of the heart, causing heart cells to die...

.

On the night of April 15, 1948, Roxas died at Clark Field, Pampanga
Pampanga
Pampanga is a province of the Philippines located in the Central Luzon region. Its capital is the City of San Fernando, Pampanga. Pampanga is bordered by the provinces of Bataan and Zambales to the west, Tarlac and Nueva Ecija to the north, and Bulacan to the southeast...

. In the morning of his death Roxas delivered a speech before the US Thirteenth Air Force, in which he said:
After the speech, he felt dizzy and was brought to the residence of Major General E.L. Eubank, where he died that same night.

On April 17, 1948, two days after Roxas' death, Vice-President Elpidio Quirino
Elpidio Quirino
Elpidio Rivera Quirino was a Filipino politician, and the sixth President of the Philippines.A lawyer by profession, Quirino entered politics when he became a representative of Ilocos Sur from 1919 to 1925. He was then elected as senator from 1925–1931...

 took the oath of office as President of the Philippines
President of the Philippines
The President of the Philippines is the head of state and head of government of the Philippines. The president leads the executive branch of the Philippine government and is the commander-in-chief of the Armed Forces of the Philippines...

, per line of succession.

In his honor, Roxas District (Project 1) in Quezon City and Roxas, Isabela
Roxas, Isabela
Roxas is a first class municipality in the province of Isabela, Philippines. According to the latest census, it has a population of 53,461 people in 9,896 households....

 was named after him .

Family

Manuel Roxas was married to Doña Trinidad de Leon and had two children Ma. Rosario "Ruby" who is married to Vicente Roxas and Gerardo M. "Gerry" Roxas
Gerardo Roxas
Gerardo Manuel Roxas y De Leon , better known as Gerry Roxas or Gerardo M. Roxas, was one of two children of former Philippine President Manuel Roxas...

 who married Judy Araneta.

Gerry became a House Representative and a leader of Liberal Party. He fathered three children, two of them (Dinggoy Roxas and Mar Roxas
Mar Roxas
Manuel "Mar" Araneta Roxas II is a former Senator of the Philippines. He is the son of former Senator Gerry Roxas, and the grandson of former President Manuel Roxas and industrialist J. Amado Araneta....

) served as Representatives of Capiz. Mar became a Senator
Senate of the Philippines
The Senate of the Philippines is the upper chamber of the bicameral legislature of the Philippines, the Congress of the Philippines...

 in 2004, and he was elected President of the Liberal Party of the Philippines in 2004. In the 2010 elections, he first ran for president of the same party but then changed the position he was running for into Vice President, giving way for Benigno Aquino III
Benigno Aquino III
Benigno Simeon Cojuangco Aquino III , also known as Noynoy Aquino or PNoy, is a Filipino politician who has been the 15th and current President of the Philippines since June 2010....

, son of the late national hero, Benigno Aquino, Jr.
Benigno Aquino, Jr.
Benigno Simeon "Ninoy" Aquino, Jr. was a Filipino Senator and a former Governor of Tarlac. Aquino, together with Gerry Roxas and Jovito Salonga, formed the leadership of the opposition to the Marcos regime in the years leading to the imposition of martial law in the Philippines...

 and the late peace icon and former president, Corazon Aquino
Corazon Aquino
Maria Corazon Sumulong Cojuangco-Aquino was the 11th President of the Philippines and the first woman to hold that office in Philippine history. She is best remembered for leading the 1986 People Power Revolution, which toppled Ferdinand Marcos and restored democracy in the Philippines...

, to run for president in their party. Aquino won by a landslide while Roxas lost by a small margin to Jejomar Binay
Jejomar Binay
Jejomar "Jojo" Cabauatan Binay, Sr. , also known as Jojo Binay or VPNay, is a Filipino politician who has been the 15th Vice President of the Philippines since 2010. Previously, he was Mayor of Makati City from 1986 to 1998 and again from 2001 to 2010...

.

Descendants

Several of Roxas' descendants became prominent political figures in their own right:
  • Mar Roxas
    Mar Roxas
    Manuel "Mar" Araneta Roxas II is a former Senator of the Philippines. He is the son of former Senator Gerry Roxas, and the grandson of former President Manuel Roxas and industrialist J. Amado Araneta....

    , grandson of former President and former Congressman turned Senator
  • Gerardo Roxas, Jr., grandson of former President and former Congressman
  • Margarita Moran-Floirendo (born Maria Margarita Roxas-Moran), granddaughter of former President and Miss Universe 1973
    Miss Universe 1973
    Miss Universe 1973 was held at the 2,000-year-old amphitheatre of Odeon of Herodes Atticus, at the foot of the Acropolis in Athens, Greece on July 21, 1973...

  • Margarita Roxas de Ayala (1826–1869), considered the first Filipino philanthropist and the greatest businessperson of her time
  • Don Jose Bonifacio Roxas (1834–1888), younger brother of Margarita Roxas de Ayala and father of Pedro Pablo Roxas. In 1851 he would purchase the former Jesuit estate of Hacienda de San Pedro de Macati, which would become the future basis of the Zobel de Ayala Family wealth.
  • Felix Roxas y Fernandez (1864–1936) would become the mayor of Manila from 1905 to 1917.
  • Felix Roxas y Arroyo (1820–?), father of Felix Roxas y Fernandez, the first Filipino qualified architect
  • Felipe Roxas y Arroyo (1840–1899), the painter who emigrated to Paris
  • Pedro Pablo Roxas (1847–1912), one of the richest Filipinos at the turn of 20th century, the first manager of San Miguel Brewery
  • Francisco Roxas (1851–1897), second cousin of Pedro Pablo Roxas, a musician turned businessman who was falsely accused of complicity with the Katipunan. He was one of the "13 Martyrs of Bagumbayan.
  • Antonio J. Roxas, present chairman of board of Roxas & Company, Inc. and chairman emeritus of Roxas Holdings, and director of Central Azucarero Don Pedro

External links



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