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Sunday, June 23, 2024

The enduring impact of Ramon ‘Monching’ Guico Jr.’s leadership

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Rep. Ramon “Monching” Guico, Jr., affectionately known to his constituents as “Monching” proudly hails from Pangasinan, a province rich in history and tradition. Its name means “place of salt-making,” reflecting the region’s traditional industry along the Lingayen Gulf.

From its early years, the province’s journey is marked by resilience, transforming from a pre-colonial trading hub to a formal province in 1580. Today, it flourishes as a diverse cultural landscape, renowned for its hospitable people and its legacy of innovation in local governance.

Pangasinan boasts of a complex and dynamic political landscape. Having experienced qualified public leaders throughout the years, Pangasinenses have set a benchmark for good governance. It is in this heated political landscape that Rep. Guico rose to prominence, intent on leaving an indelible mark on Philippine politics.

From entrepreneurship to politics

Rep. Guico Jr.’s early life served as a fortified foundation for the role he now plays in the 19th Congress of the House of Representatives. 

The district representative grew up in humble beginnings, where diligence and tenacity defined his early years. Nonetheless, this didn’t keep him from exhibiting early leadership signs, characteristics, and abilities that will guide him today. From assisting in his family’s small store at the tender age of five to assuming leadership roles in school, he embodied the values of industry and responsibility that would shape his future endeavors. The young Rep. Guico Jr. later pursued an engineering degree at the University of Baguio.

Despite his engineering background, the lawmaker’s innate talents and diverse experiences led him down a path of entrepreneurship, where he found success in various industries ranging from agriculture to construction.

In the early 1970s, Rep. Guico Jr. started growing hogs and chickens. After that, he bought abandoned Pantranco buses for his gravel and sand company. Eventually, the entrepreneur-turned-politician entered the construction industry, building roads from farms to markets and dams. He later ventured into the healthcare and education industries in 1985, the most significant business endeavor he had ever done.

However, Rep. Guico Jr. could no longer ignore the calling for staunch public service, eventually putting him on the radar as a leader of exceptional caliber.

Earning a seat in the government

In 1987, he was appointed Mayor of Binalonan, a role he would fulfill with distinction for multiple terms. Rep. Guico Jr.’s visionary leadership came to the fore during his tenure as mayor, propelling Binalonan from a Fifth-Class Municipality to a thriving First-Class Municipality. Under his stewardship, Binalonan flourished, becoming a model of progress and development in the region.

Besides being the municipality’s leader, he became President of the League of Municipalities of the Philippines (LMP), where he spearheaded transformative initiatives to revitalize local governance. Through projects like the “Ang Galing Mo, Mayor” campaign and the establishment of the Mayor’s Development Center, Monching elevated the discourse on municipal leadership, garnering local and international recognition for his innovative approach.

Now serving as the distinguished representative for Pangasinan’s fifth congressional district, Rep. Guico Jr. carries on his tradition of service today. With the same zeal and commitment that won him over to his voters, he fights for causes near and dear in the sacred corridors of Congress, from environmental preservation to poverty alleviation.

His legislative program reflects his dedication to establishing a more prosperous and equitable future for all Filipinos through social justice and sound administration.

Some of his recent undertakings to promote innovation in his district include providing a district-wide water pump distribution, collaborating with various local government agencies to ensure proper program implementation throughout his jurisdiction, including the Tulong Panghanapbuhay sa Ating Disadvantaged/Displaced Workers (TUPAD) Program from the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE), and working closely with his sons,  Mayor Ramon RG Guico IV and Governor Ramon Mon-Mon Guico III, for the distribution of financial assistance for Pangasinan rice farmers.

Without a doubt, Rep. Guico is ensuring that all his constituents, regardless of any industry, status, age, or gender, can feel his efforts as their champion for change.

Lobbying legislations for progress

In the 19th Congress, Rep. Guico Jr. is the principal author of 39 bills, including House Bill 6478 or the Cable Management Act, House Bill 10081, which proposed the increase of Region 1 Medical Center’s (R1MC) bed capacity from 600 to 1,500, and House Bill 1252 or the Unobstructed Sidewalks Act.

Rep. Guico Jr. even concerns himself with matters of national importance, including issues regarding preserving a decades-long industry such as salt production, where many Filipinos rely on for livelihood and even preserve their rich heritage.

Through Republic Act 11985 or the Philippine Salt Industry Development, where Rep. Guico Jr. is one of the primary authors, he championed rural development through sound agricultural productivity while preserving the local environment to actualize the law’s developmental policies.

Moreover, the Pangasinan Fifth District representative is also a co-author of 17 other bills.

Rep. Guico Jr.’s duties extend further as a member of the majority of two committees, namely the North Luzon Growth Quadrangle and Senior Citizens committees. More importantly, he has been appointed as Chairperson of the House Contingent to the Commission on Appointments where he uses his wealth of wisdom and experience to help ensure that the country’s political appointees have the competence and morals to serve the public.

Beyond his political achievements, Rep. Guico Jr. remains grounded as a devoted family man, finding solace and strength in the love of his wife, Arlyn Guico, and their six children. His enduring commitment to public service has inspired a new generation of leaders, including his two children, who have followed in his footsteps, carrying forth the Guico legacy with pride and honor.

Rep. Guico Jr. ‘s journey from humble beginnings to a distinguished career in public service serve as a testament to the power of dedication, perseverance, and a genuine desire to uplift the lives of others. His unwavering commitment to progress, both on a local and national scale, has left an indelible mark on Pangasinan and the Philippines as a whole.

As he continues to champion crucial legislation and advocate for his constituents, his legacy undoubtedly continues to inspire future generations to embrace public service and strive for a brighter tomorrow.

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