A FILIPINO scientist is among the six Asians who will be conferred the 2012 Ramon Magsaysay Award, Asia's equivalent of the Nobel Prize, in Presentation Ceremonies on August 31, 2012, the Birth Anniversary of former President Ramon F. Magsaysay, in whose honor the award was named, at the Philippine International Convention Center. The six awardees are: Dr. Romulo G. Davide of the Philippines, Chen Shu-Jiu of Taiwan, Kulandei Francis of India, Syeda Rizwana Hasan of Bangladesh, Yang Sain Koma of Cambodia, and Ambrosius Ruwindrijarto of Indonesia.

The Ramon Magsaysay Award Foundation (RMAF) noted: "The Magsaysay awardees of 2012 are six remarkable individuals, all concerned in creating sustainable solutions, whether in forests or on farmlands, in industries or in education. Working in powerful ways, they show how commitment, competence, and leadership can transform millions of individual lives and galvanize community action."

Dr. Davide is the second in his family to be awarded Asia's highest honor; his younger brother, former Supreme Court Chief Justice Hilario G. Davide Jr. received the 2002 Ramon Magsaysay Award for Government Service. Dr. Davide has been cited for "his steadfast passion in placing the power and discipline of science in the hands of farmers in the Philippines, who have consistently multiplied their yields, created productive farming communities, and rediscovered the dignity of their labor." He is called the "Father of Plant Nematology" for his years of teaching and research on nematode pests that infest agricultural crops. He is known for the Farmer Scientist Training Program, which began inn his hometown of Argao, Cebu, and expanded nationwide.

The Ramon Magsaysay Award, established in 1957 by the Philippine Government and Rockefeller Brothers Fund of New York, United States of America to perpetuate the memory and legacy of President Magsaysay, is given annually to persons or organizations in Asia who "manifest the same sense of selfless service that ruled the life of the beloved Filipino leader." The RMAF awards Asian organizations and individuals, regardless of race, for achieving excellence in their respective fields, addressing issues of human development in Asia, and contributing to transforming societies for the better. The awards are given in six categories: Government Service, Public Service, Community Leadership, Journalism, Literature and Creative Communication Arts, Peace and International Understanding, and Emergent Leadership. Since 1957, the RMAF has recognized 18 organizations and 270 individuals who served others in extraordinary ways.

We congratulate the 2012 Ramon Magsaysay Awardees, namely, Dr. Romulo G. Davide of the Philippines, Chen Shu-Jiu of Taiwan, Kulandei Francis of India, Syeda Rizwana Hasan of Bangladesh, Yang Sain Koma of Cambodia, and Ambrosius Ruwindrijarto of Indonesia and wish them all the best and success in all endeavors. CONGRATULATIONS AND MABUHAY!

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