President of the Philippines

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The President of the Philippines is the head of state and of the government of the Republic of the Philippines. The president heads the Executive branch of the government, which includes the Cabinet, and is the Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces of the Philippines. The current President of the Philippines is Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo.

According to the current constitution (1987), the President must be at least 40 years of age, a Filipino citizen by birth, and is a resident of the Philippines for the past 10 years prior to election. The Filipinos directly elect the president who wins on a plurality vote. The president serves a term of six years and may no longer run for re-election, unless he/she becomes president through constitutional succession and has served for no more than 4 years as president.

The official title of the president is the "President of the Philippines," as specified in the present Constitution of the Philippines (1987). The honorific for the President of the Philippines is "Your Excellency" or "His/Her Excellency", adopted from the title of the Governor-General of the Philippines during Spanish and American times. The term "President of the Republic of the Philippines" is commonly, but erroneously, used, dating back to when President Jose P. Laurel wanted to express the difference between his government and the previous Commonwealth government (then in exile) under President Manuel L. Quezon. The restoration of the Commonwealth in 1945 and the subsequent independence of the Philippines led to the restoration of the constitutionally-sanctioned title "President of the Philippines" until President Ferdinand E. Marcos proclaimed martial law and once more wanted to differentiate his government from those that came before. It was then that "President of the Republic of the Philippines" was adopted and indeed, specified in the 1973 Constitution of the Philippines. However, that Constitution was superseded by a new one in 1987 which restored the more traditional "President of the Philippines."


The Presidents

The Philippines has had a total of fourteen presidents. Despite the differences in constitutions and government, the line of presidents is considered to be continuous. For instance, the current president, Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo, is considered the 14th president. While the Philippines consider Emilio Aguinaldo to be the first president, the First Republic fell under the United States following the Philippine-American War. Manuel L. Quezon is considered to be the first president by the United States and the first to win an election.

The Philippines had two presidents at one point during WW2 heading two governments. One was Quezon heading the Commonwealth government-in-exile (considered de jure) and the other was J. P. Laurel heading the Japanese-sponsored republic (considered de facto). Laurel was instructed to remain in Manila by President Manuel Quezon. Laurel was not recognized as a Philippine president formally until the Macapagal administration. The recognition coincided with the movement of the Philippine Independence Day from July 4 to June 12. However, it must be borne in mind that in the roster of presidents, it is inaccurate to consider Laurel the successor of Osmeña or vice versa; Laurel's republic was formally rejected after World War II and none of its statutes or actions were considered legal or binding. The inclusion of Laurel causes some problems in determining the order of presidents. Quezon, Osmena, and Roxas, for example, were three of a continuous constitutional line; Laurel was the first and only President of the Second Republic. Thus, Laurel has no predecessor and successor, while Osmena was Quezon's successor and Roxas was Osmena's successor.

First Dictatorship: The Revolutionary Government (18981899)

Ethnicity: Tagalog-Chinese

First Republic (18991901)

Ethnicity: Tagalog-Chinese

Commonwealth of the Philippines (19351946)

Ethnicity: Tagalog-Spanish
Ethnicity: Cebuano
Ethnicity: Capiznon

Second Republic (19431945)

Ethnicity: Tagalog

Third Republic (19461973)

Ethnicity: Capiznon
Ethnicity: Ilocano-Spanish
Ethnicity: Visayan (but born in Zambales)
Ethnicity: Tingguian-Ilocano (but born in Bohol)
Ethnicity: Ilocano-Chinese-Japanese

Second Dictatorship: Martial Law (19721981)

Ethnicity: Ilocano-Chinese-Japanese

Fourth Republic (19811987)

  • Ferdinand E. Marcos : 19811986 (elected), 1986 (declared winner, amidst electoral fraud allegations) :Ethnicity: Ilocano-Chinese-Japanese
  • Corazon C. Aquino : 19861987 (recognized winner, amended constitution through Proclamation No. 3 :Ethnicity: Kapampangan-Tagalog-Chinese-Spanish

Fifth Republic (1987–Present)

Ethnicity: Kapampangan-Tagalog-Chinese-Spanish
Ethnicity: Pangasinense
Ethnicity: Tagalog-Spanish
Ethnicity: Kapampangan-Cebuano

See also

External links

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