Ramon Magsaysay – Conclusion

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His administration was considered one of the cleanest and most corruption-free; his presidency was cited as the Philippines’ Golden Years. Trade and industry flourished, the Philippine military was at its prime, and the Filipino people were given international recognition in sports, culture and foreign affairs. The Philippines ranked second in Asia’s clean and well-governed countries. Magsaysay achieved to suppress the Huk as Luis Taruc surrendered to his administration. Majority of his programs that were implemented helped a lot in the fulfillment of this action.

True to his words, this became reality during his term, the Filipinos most especially the common man was given the opportunity to be heard about their complaints and that their grievances were taken seriously. The masses had learned to exercise their rights under the Constitution without fear of vindictive repression. There were programs that helped to improve rural living conditions and oversee its development such as irrigation projects and artesian wells campaign. These additional irrigation systems were constructed and modern agricultural methods were introduced which resulted in higher production of rice with new varieties.

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The Laurel-Langley Agreement had some advantages for the Philippines but, eventually, it ended to the U. S. authority to control the exchange rate of the Peso. The bill also extended the sugar quota and the time period during which Philippine goods could be exported to the U. S. without tariffs: these measures were concessions to the Philippine elite, in recognition of their commitment to the American cause. The agreement also contained provisions encouraging foreign investment in the Philippines, allowing increased American economic control.

In particular, it granted foreign individuals and corporations the legal right to own land, which was opposed by many nationalists. Magsaysay also signed the first Agricultural Commodities Agreement with the United States in 1957 which was designed to make use of U. S. agricultural surplus to help perpetuate a colonial pattern of economy in the Philippines, keep local agricultural production at the mercy of U. S. imperialism, and control intermediate industries requiring imported agricultural raw materials and support U. S. imperialist propaganda.

In opposition to the two agreements, Magsaysay created NAMARCO which helped Filipino businessmen who were engaged in the retail trade. Although the common people benefited from the land distribution of the government, and tenants were given more rights, the problems that were solved by the government were just in the surface rather than the main problem. In Republic Act No. 1199 farmers were given a certain percentage of the distribution of crop. Although it increased the share of the tenant from the produce, it did not eliminate tenancy.

His programs were designed to benefit the common people but eventually had its problems in the end. The relocation of the people from certain places worked at first but eventually started a cultural dispute between the natives living there and those who were relocated. He promised sweeping economic reform, and made progress in land reform by promoting the resettlement of poor people in the Catholic north into traditionally Muslim areas. Though this relieved population pressure in the north, it heightened religious hostilities.

If we were to grade the performance of Magsaysay as a president from a range of 1 – 10 and 10 being the highest, it will be an 8 because of him being a charismatic person despite of the holes and shortcomings of his implemented laws – Laurel-Langley Agreement and Agricultural Commodities Agreement. He was able to roam around the barrios and reach out to his people which ultimately develop his charisma to the people. The majority may have neglected the outcomes of the two agreements and still concluded him as the “man of the masses”.

As what we have known, there is no perfect administration, it always have deficiencies, limitations, and weaknesses. It was maybe on his term that the strong dependency of the people to public servants was developed. Instead of the people doing what they needed to do, they instead leaned on the officials. But despite of these circumstances, he was able to portray to the Filipinos the true meaning of a democratic government. He opened the Malacanan and declared it as the house of the people, and offers himself as a man that serves only to his people and adheres firmly to the ideals and principles of Constitution.

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