Emilio Yap. Photo from Manila Bulletin
MANILA (5th UPDATE) – Chinese-Filipino businessman Emilio Yap passed away Monday noon.
He was 88 years old.
Philippine Trust Company (Philtrust Bank) said in a disclosure to the stock exchange that its board “announces with deep regrets that its beloved Chairman Emeritus, Don Emilio T. Yap, passed away at 12:00 noon today.”
No details on the cause of death and on the interment have been released, as of posting.
“Funeral services will be held at a time and place to be announced later,” The Manila Bulletin said.
Yap was the owner of The Manila Bulletin and was also chairman of Manila Hotel and Centro Escolar University.
President Benigno Aquino, in a statement to media, sent his condolences to Yap's family.
“At noon today, respected industrialist, publisher, and philanthropist, Don Emilio Yap passed away. I convey my deepest sympathies to the Yap family in this time of loss and mourning, and hope that they can draw strength from the knowledge that Mr. Yap lives on in the legacy he leaves behind, one distinguished both by personal success and by an abiding generosity. In all his activities, his self-effacing nature, kindly disposition, and concern for his employees and staff earned him widespread respect and the affection of many. Today, I join all those whose lives he has touched in prayer for the eternal repose of his soul and for the comfort and consolation of his bereaved family,” the President said.
“Mr. Yap will long be remembered for his achievements in many areas of economic activity vital to the well-being of our nation—ranging from banking, to hotels and restaurants, to shipping, to publishing, and even to education. In particular, he always upheld the deepest optimism and confidence in the abilities of the Filipino and in the success of the country. Indeed: he was a true exponent of Philippine progress. On a personal note, I will always remember him as a good friend, not only of my mother, but of the entire family as well. We will always treasure the memories we shared with him,” he added.
Communications Secretary Sonny Coloma described Yap's stewardship of the Manila Bulletin for more than four decades “his enduring legacy.”
“He has shaped and steered a major newspaper that has become a standard-bearer of the Filipino nation; an institution whose continuing relevance and resiliency are rooted in the newspaper's faith and pride in the Filipino people and in their civic consciousness. His presence will be missed; yet his happy memory shall be a constant source of inspiration for a grateful nation,” Coloma said.
Yap was known for his philanthropy in his later years, donating to the New York State World Trade Center Relief Fund, United Way, Salvation Army, and the Philippine Embassy in Washington, D.C. to help victims of the September 11 attacks.
He did charity work for the Department of Social Welfare and Development Mindanao Peace and Development Program; Caritas Manila; Philippine Red Cross; and the Catholic Bishops' Conference of the Philippines.
He was also conferred 23 honorary doctoral degrees from various Philippine and international universities. -- With a report from RG Cruz, ABS-CBN News