'Philippine team,' FVR says of 5 presidents meeting


Posted at Jul 28 2016 12:47 PM

Former Presidents Fidel V. Ramos, Joseph Estrada, Gloria Arroyo and Benigno Aquino III went to the Palace on Wednesday for a National Security Council meeting with incumbent President Rodrigo Duterte. Photo courtesy of Presidential Communications Secretary Martin Andanar

MANILA - "Philippine team." This was how former President Fidel Ramos called the gathering of four former Philippine chief executives, including himself, with incumbent President Rodrigo Duterte, on Wednesday.

Ramos noted that it was the first time five former and present Philippine presidents gathered together and united to discuss the future of the country.

Duterte, Ramos, Joseph Estrada, Gloria Macapagal Arroyo and Benigno Aquino III on Wednesday attended a National Security Council (NSC) meeting, where an overview of the road map for peace and development was presented.

Also discussed in the five-hour meeting were the government's campaign against illegal drugs, Charter change and a shift to federalism.

Malacañang earlier said Duterte decided to convene the NSC following an arbitral tribunal's ruling invalidating China's massive claim in the disputed South China Sea.

Ramos earlier accepted Duterte's offer to become Manila's special envoy to Beijing.

Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process Secretary Jesus Dureza said Ramos asked Duterte for "a good, clear road map or marching order" on what his mission will be. - Report from Dexter Ganibe, dzMM

READ: What special envoy FVR asked Duterte