Eduardo Cojuangco, Jr.

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Eduardo Cojuangco, Jr.
Member of the Philippine House of Representatives from Tarlac's First District
In office
December 30, 1969 – September 23, 1972
Preceded by Jose Cojuangco, Jr.
Succeeded by Vacant[1]
Post later held by Jose Cojuangco, Jr.
Governor of Tarlac
In office
December 30, 1967 – December 30, 1969
Personal details
Born Eduardo Murphy Cojuangco, Jr.
(1935-06-10) June 10, 1935 (age 80)
Paniqui, Tarlac, Philippine Islands
Nationality Filipino
Political party NPC (1991-present)
Other political
Nacionalista Party (1967-1991)
Spouse(s) Soledad Oppen Cojuangco
Alma mater San Beda College
De La Salle University
University of the Philippines Los Baños
California State College
Occupation Businessperson

Eduardo Murphy Cojuangco, Jr. (born June 10, 1935), also known as Danding Cojuangco, is the chairman of San Miguel Corporation,[2] the largest food and beverage corporation in the Philippines and Southeast Asia, former Philippine ambassador, and former governor of Tarlac.[3] In 2005, his personal wealth was estimated at US$527 million.[2] It was estimated that, at one time, his business empire accounted for 25% of the gross national product of the Philippines.[3] He has been called "one of the country's leading businessmen".[4]

He was a candidate for the Philippine presidency in 1992, ultimately losing in a tight election to Fidel V. Ramos. Ramos received 23.6% of the vote. Miriam Defensor Santiago came in second with 19.7% and Cojuangco came in third with 18.2%.[5]

He tested the political waters in 2003, planning to run in the 2004 Presidential and Local Elections, but soon withdrew. He was a close adviser and personal friend to former President Ferdinand E. Marcos, which led him to become estranged from his cousin, Corazon Aquino, who after Marcos' ouster succeeded him as president. Cojuangco is of partial Irish, Spanish, and Chinese descent.[citation needed]

Cojuangco was a member of the Rolex 12, a group of 12 men who were closest to Marcos and allegedly were his enforcers of Martial Law. He is also an honorary member of PMA Class 1951. Cojuangco also was accused by the military men at the scene of Benigno Aquino, Jr.'s assassination, as the leader who orchestrated the crime.

He is currently the chairman emeritus of the Nationalist People's Coalition, the party he founded in 1992 which served as his vehicle to further his aspirations in the 1992 presidential elections.

He was also an advocate for sports in the country through using his company as sponsors for various events. He is notable for supporting basketball in a huge way since the 1980s as a basketball godfather for President Marcos with the famed Northern Consolidated teams of coach Ron Jacobs, and the three SMC owned teams currently playing in the Philippine Basketball Association (the flagship San Miguel Beermen, Barangay Ginebra San Miguel, and San Mig Super Coffee Mixers).

He studied at San Beda College, De La Salle University, University of the Philippines Los Baños and California State College.[6]

Besides English and Tagalog, he speaks Ilocano, the language of his mother and Kapampangan, the original language of the Cojuangcos.[citation needed]

Personal life[edit]

Cojuangco is married to Soledad "Gretchen" Oppen. They have four children: Margarita "Tina" Cojuangco Barrera, Luisa "Lisa" Cojuangco Cruz, Carlos "Charlie" Cojuangco and Marcos Juan Bruno Cojuangco.

He is the eldest child of Eduardo C. Cojuangco, Sr. and Josephine B. Murphy.