Statement of Secretary Edwin Lacierda:
On the week of December 1-5, 2014
[December 1, 2014]
On Friday, the President will attend the 2014 Presidential Awards for Filipino Individuals and Organizations Overseas (PAFIOO) and host a ceremonial dinner for the awardees and their families. The biennial awards recognize Filipino individuals and overseas organizations that have made significant contributions to our country’s development, either by exhibiting professional excellence or by advancing the cause of Filipino communities abroad.
P-Noy to Confer Presidential Awards to 33 Outstanding Overseas Filipinos and Organizations
His Excellency President Benigno S. Aquino III will honor 33 distinguished and outstanding overseas Filipinos and foreign-based organizations from 12 countries during the Awarding Ceremonies for the 2014 Presidential Awards for Filipino Individuals and Organizations Overseas on December 5, 2014 at the Malacañan Palace. In conferring the Awards, the President will be assisted by Secretary Imelda M. Nicolas, the Chairperson of the Commission on Filipinos Overseas.
ore than 20 years ago, former President Corazon C. Aquino issued Proclamation No. 276 declaring December of every year as Month of Overseas Filipinos as a tribute for overseas Filipinos to encourage their participation in the development activities in the country. Recognizing the significant role of overseas Filipinos in national development, the Philippine government, through the Commission on Filipinos Overseas (CFO) conducted various activities to honor overseas Filipinos for their exemplary achievements and contributions. One of these activities is the CFO Awards which were conferred by President Aquino to 34 overseas Filipino individuals and organizations in 1991.
In the same year, President Aquino issued Executive Order No. 498 institutionalizing the awards, naming it the Presidential Awards for Filipino Individuals and Organizations Overseas. The Executive Order specifically designated the CFO and the Department of Foreign Affairs to develop an awards system for Filipino individuals and organizations overseas who have contributed significantly to promoting the well-being of our people, and supporting the country’s development efforts.
The Presidential Awards for Filipino Individuals and Organizations Overseas is a biennial awards system to give recognition to Filipinos and other individuals or organizations who contribute to Philippine development initiatives, or promote the interests of overseas Filipino communities. The awards are also given to overseas Filipinos who have exceptionally distinguished themselves in their work or profession, and have thereby brought honor to the Filipino nation. A distinct category in the awards is also reserved for foreign individuals or organizations for their exceptional contribution to the Philippines and for advancing the cause of overseas Filipino communities.
Since inception, the awards have already been bestowed upon 367 Filipino individuals and organization overseas from 46 countries and territories. President Fidel V. Ramos conferred the first and second clusters of Presidential Awards on 22 and 45 awardees in 1993 and 1996, respectively. President Joseph E. Estrada conferred the third and fourth clusters of Presidential Awards on 30 and 59 awardees in 1998 and 2000, respectively. President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo conferred the fifth, sixth, seventh and eighth clusters of Presidential Awards on 34 (with one special citation), 45, 48, and 31 awardees, in 2002, 2004, 2006, and 2008 respectively. President Benigno S. Aquino III conferred the ninth and tenth clusters of Presidential Awards on 24 and 29 awardees, in 2010 and 2012 respectively.
Beyond their recognizable contribution to humanity, the awardees also reinforce faith and confidence in the Filipino nation. They have given meaning to Filipino excellence and the time-honored values of pakikipag-kapwa, pagtutulungan, and pagkakaisa.