A BIOGRAPHY OF ASIA’S FIRST LADY PRESIDENT: CORAZON C. AQUINO
Cory Aquino Biography
First Posted 05:42:00 08/01/2009
Corazon C. Aquino
(Born- January 25, 1933)
Seventh and First Woman President of the Republic of the Philippines
(Term: February 25, 1986- June 30, 1992)
Corazon Aquino was a political leader and president from (1986 to 1992) of the Philippines.
In 1983 she succeeded her husband and senator, Benigno “Ninoy” Aquino Jr. as leader of the opposition to then president Ferdinand Marcos. Aquino was assassinated in the same year at the then Manila International Airport following his arrival from the US where he stayed for seven years.
No one could have imagined that Mrs. Aquino would become president, the first woman to lead the country after Marcos was ousted in a military-backed popular revolt that she spearheaded in 1986.
When Marcos called for a presidential election in February 1986, Mrs. Aquino became the unified opposition’s candidate. Although she was officially reported to have lost the election to Marcos, Aquino and her supporters challenged the results, charging widespread voting fraud.
High officials in the Philippine military soon publicly renounced Marcos’ continued rule and proclaimed Aquino the Philippines rightful president.
On Feb. 25, 1986, both Aquino and Marcos were inaugurated as president by their respective supporters but that same day Marcos fled the country.
In March 1986 then president Aquino appointed a commission that would rewrite the Constitution.
The revised Charter was ratified by a landslide vote in February 1987.
Despite popular support, Aquino was accused of economic injustice, a problem exacerbated by continuing warfare between the communist insurgency and a military whose loyalties to Aquino were uncertain. In general, her economic policies were criticized for faltering in the face of mass poverty.
Aquino was born to a wealthy family in Tarlac on Jan. 25, 1933. Her parents were Don Jose Cojuangco and Doña Demetria Sumulong. She was the sixth among the eight children of the Sumulong. Corazon Aquino’s children are Maria Elena Aquino, Aurora Corazon, Victoria Eliza, Senator benigno Aquino III, and Kris, a TV and movie personality.
In 1946, Aquino’s family left for the US and she enrolled at Ravenhill Academy in Philadelphia. She finished her junior and senior years at Notre Dame College in New York. She entered Mount Saint Vincent College in New York City in 1949 where she finished a Bachelor of Arts, major in French. In 1953, she returned to the Philippines to take up law at the Far Eastern University, but then abandoned further studies in 1955 to marry Benigno Aquino Jr., who was then a promising young politician.
Before her entry into politics, Mrs. Aquino was a housewife, content with supporting her husband and raising five children.