Quirino, Elpidio (1890-1956), president of the Philippines (1948-1953). He was born in Vignan on Luzon, studied law,After obtaining a law degree from the University of the Philippines, near Manila, in 1915, Quirino practiced law until he was elected a member of the Philippine House of Representatives in 1919-25 and a senator in 1925-31. In 1934 he was a member of the Philippine independence mission to Washington, D.C., headed by Manuel Quezon, which secured the passage in Congress of the Tydings-McDuffie Act, setting the date for Philippine independence as July 4, 1946. He was also elected to the convention that drafted a constitution for the new Philippine Commonwealth. Subsequently he served as secretary of finance and secretary of the interior in the Commonwealth government. After World War II, Quirino served as secretary of state and vice president under the first president of the independent Philippines, Manuel Roxas. When Roxas died on April 15, 1948, Quirino succeeded to the presidency. The following year, he was elected president for a four-year term on the Liberal Party ticket, defeating the Nacionalista candidate. President Quirino's administration faced a serious threat in the form of the Communist-led Hukbalahap (Huk) movement. Though the Huks originally had been an anti-Japanese guerrilla army in Luzon, the Communists steadily gained control over the leadership, and, when Quirino's negotiations with Huk commander Luis Taruc broke down in 1948, Taruc openly declared himself a Communist and called for the overthrow of the government. By 1950 the Huks had gained control over a considerable portion of Luzon, and Quirino appointed the able Ramon Magsaysay as secretary of national defense to suppress the insurrection. (see also Index: Hukbalahap Rebellion) Quirino's six years as president were marked by notable postwar reconstruction, general economic gains, and increased economic aid from the United States. Basic social problems, however, particularly in the rural areas, remained unsolved; Quirino's administration was tainted by widespread graft and corruption. The 1949 elections, which he had won, were among the most dishonest in the country's history. Magsaysay, who had been largely successful in eliminating the threat of the Huk insurgents, broke with Quirino on the issue of corruption, campaigning for clean elections and defeating Quirino as the Nacionalista candidate in the presidential election of 1953. Subsequently, Quirino retired to private life.
Remembering President Elpidio R. Quirino on his 56th Death Anniversary February 29, 2012, 1:58am
MANILA, Philippines — Wednesday we remember President Elpidio R. Quirino, the sixth President of the Philippines. He worked hard to fight communism and poverty, restored the faith of the people in the government, and pushed for economic recovery. Elpidio R. Quirino was born on November 16, 1890, in Vigan, Ilocos Sur, to Mariano Quirino and Gregoria M. Rivera. He received his first schooling from his parents before going to Aringay Elementary School. Later, he studied in a private school in San Fernando, La Union. When his parents returned to Vigan, he continued his studies in the town’s high school and afterwards became a teacher at the Capariaan barrio school in Caoayan. Quirino went to Manila and enrolled at Manila High School, then went on to the University of the Philippines College of Law. He obtained his Bachelor of Laws in 1915 and passed the bar the same year. He worked as law clerk in the Philippine Commission and when the Philippine Senate was convened, he became the Secretary of Manuel L. Quezon. He ran for representative of his congressional district in Ilocos Sur in 1919 and won. On January 16, 1921, he married Alicia G. Syquia of Vigan, Ilocos Sur. They went on to have three children but the wife and children fell victims of colonial occupation forces on February 12, 1945. In 1925, Quirino ran for Senator and won. In...