Patient and secretive behind his steel glasses, Fidel Ramos forged a reputation as a hardworking and serious man in order to conquer the presidency in 1992.
Former Philippine President Fidel Ramos, who led the country through a rare period of growth and peace, earning him a reputation as one of its most effective leaders, is died Sunday at age 94, senior officials said.
This frail-looking career soldier, colloquially nicknamed Eddie by Filipinos, was president from 1992 to 1998.
It is with great sadness that we learn of the passing of former President Fidel V. Ramos, announced Trixie Cruz-Angeles, press secretary to President Ferdinand Marcos Jr., namesake of the deceased dictator, who took office last month.
He leaves behind a colorful legacy […] in history for his participation in the great changes of our country, both as a military officer and as a leader of the military. executive, she added.
Fidel Ramos' family is expected to issue a statement later on Sunday. The cause of death has not yet been released.
The European Union Delegation to the Philippines expressed its condolences, describing the deceased as a dedicated statesman and a pillar of democracy.
Fidel Ramos had succeeded in pacifying the political and social space of his country.
Fidel Ramos, a general converted to democracy, was the first Protestant to rise to the highest office in this predominantly Catholic country, despite opposition from some church members.
Known for his unflappable demeanor in times of crisis, it was not uncommon to see him tersely munching on cigars in public.
Fidel Ramos campaigned aggressively for family planning to curb rapid population growth.
Notably, it solved a major energy crisis caused by years of underinvestment in the energy field. He also broke up cartels in the telecommunications, aviation, and shipping sectors, boosting the economy which saw a period of growth.
Fidel Ramos (left) was received by US President Bill Clinton in the Oval Office of the White House in November 1993.
This former soldier also reached out to communist guerrillas , the Muslim separatists and the putschist soldiers in an attempt at conciliation.
In the end, only the communists refused to sign agreements with his government.
Fidel Ramos was also one of Rodrigo Duterte's early backers when the latter ran for president in 2016.
After the landslide victory of Mr. Duterte, Ramos was appointed the president's special envoy to Beijing to ease tensions over sovereignty issues in the South China Sea. But their relationship quickly soured, and he publicly criticized Mr. Duterte's speeches, his distancing from the alliance with the United States, and his drug campaign that claimed thousands of lives.
Born into a family of diplomats, Fidel Ramos, a graduate of the prestigious West Point military school, with pro-American convictions, fought with the Philippine contingents alongside the United States in Korea and Vietnam.
Patient and secret behind his steel glasses, he forged a reputation as a hardworking and serious man in order to win the presidency in 1992.
Fidel Ramos was the first Protestant to ascend to the supreme office in this predominantly Catholic country.
But like other senior officials of his generation, Fidel Ramos played a role in the dictatorship of Ferdinand Marcos, during which thousands were killed and thousands more arbitrarily imprisoned.< /p>
However, out of democratic conviction, he did not hesitate to turn against his master – and cousin – to bring Cory Aquino to power in 1986.
When a daughter of Ferdinand Marcos claimed Fidel Ramos was involved in her father's abuse, the former president pointed out that he had already apologized.
He claimed to have atoned for his faults by leading the army and the police during the peaceful pro-democracy revolution that overthrew Ferdinand Marcos.