Imelda Marcos Biography
Nick Name: Imelda R. Marcos
Sun Sign: Cancer
Also Known As: Imelda Remedios Visitación Romuáldez
Born in: Manila
Famous as: Filipino Politician
political ideology: Nacionalista (1965-1978; 2009–present), Kilusang Bagong Lipunan (1978–present)
Spouse/Ex-: Ferdinand Marcos
father: icente Orestes Romuáldez
mother: Remedios Trinidad
siblings: Alfredo Trinidad Romualdez, Alita Trinidad Romualdez, Armando Trinidad Romualdez, Benjamin Trinidad Romualdez, Concepcion Trinidad Romualdez
children: Aimee Marcos, Ferdinand Marcos, Imee Marcos, Irene Marcos-Araneta, Jr.
City: Manila, Philippines
education: St. Paul University-Manila
Imelda Marcos is a Filipino politician and widow of former President of the Philippines. Known for her flamboyant lifestyle, she took an active role in the political life of her husband, Ferdinand Marcos. The Marcos used their political supremacy to accrue private wealth by corruptly tapping external aid, loans and the profits of private companies into their bank accounts. She, along with her husband, fled to Hawaii after a coupe in 1986. Her husband Ferdinand Marcos died in exile in 1989 and Imelda returned to the Philippines contested for presidency in 1992. Predictably, she won a very small percentage of the vote. During her time as the first lady, she journeyed around the world, spent extravagantly and was elected to the national congress. She became infamous for her wasteful ways and came to be known for her large and ostentatious collection of jewelery, property, shoes, clothes and other luxurious items. While millions of countrymen suffered in poverty, the Marcos’ lived a hedonistic, over-the-top life, which not only affected their public image but also led to various corruption-related charges.
- Imelda Remedios Visitacion Romualdez was born in Manila, the capital of the Philippines and is the oldest daughter of Vicente Orestes Romualdez, a lawyer and Remedios T. Romualdez, a former boarder at a convent in Manila.
- Young Imelda spent her childhood at the Malacanang Palace. After her mother passed away in 1938, she attended an all-girls school, Holy Infant Academy in Tacloban, where she studied English among other subjects. She earned a bachelor’s degree in education from St. Paul’s College.
- From a very young age, she was fascinated by beauty pageants and dreamt of living an extremely extravagant lifestyle. She soon entered a number of beauty pageants and was crowned, ‘Rose of Tacloban’ at the age of 18. She also earned the title of ‘Miss Philippines’.
- In 1950, she moved to Manila and worked in music stores and began taking voice lessons at the University of Santo Tomas. She became popular with the students and the crowds as she was believed to be an extremely gifted singer.
- In 1953, sShe appeared on a number of magazine covers and her popularity increased. She was also named the ‘Muse of Manila’ by the mayor of Philippines. In the same year, she met Ferdinand E. Marcos and after eleven day courtship, they got married in the month of May at the San Miguel Pro-Cathedral on General Solano street, San Miguel, Manila.
- From 1960 to 1965, she travelled around the country in a bid to meet and acquaint herself with the politicians, who could help her husband, Ferdinand, rise to power. In 1966, Ferdinand Marcos became the 10th President of the Philippines.
- As the first lady, Imelda met a number of world leaders, from the U.S. President Lyndon B. Johnson to Cuban leader, Fidel Castro. She sought parliamentary opportunities for herself in addition to supporting her spouse with his duties.
- In the mid-1970s, Marcos served as the governor of the metro Manila area. She systematized many costly remodeling and development projects and later, served in the provisional national assembly as the minister of human settlements.
- In 1972, Ferdinand declared martial law, making himself the country’s dictator. This move allowed him to impede growing bitterness among the people and to prevent the opponents from deposing him from power. His government dealt with tyranny and brutality to suppress any opposition.
- She orchestrated lavish public events using millions of dollars from public funds to eulogize her husband’s government and to lift her public image. She also got the Miss Universe 1974 pageant organised in Manila in a large auditorium with a capacity of 10,000, which was constructed in less than 3 months at her behest.
- She backed a number of social programs in the country including the short-lived national family-planning program and established the Manila Film Center, the Cultural Center of the Philippines and the Philippine Heart Center.
- During the 1986 presidential elections, she supported her husband in his bid to be re-elected, but the failing support of the public and the non-violent People Power revolt at EDSA drove the Marcos’ out of their own country and they fled to Hawaii.
- Despite the legal problems in Hawaii, the couple lived a comfortable life in their new abode, but the happiness was very short-lived as Ferdinand Marcos passed away in 1989.
- She was convicted of racketeering in America by an American court. She was also charged with embezzlement of $200 million by the Philippines government. However, she was acquitted in this case and she returned to the Philippines in 1991.
- Despite the low support, she contested the 1992 Presidential election but lost to Fidel V. Ramos. She found herself in another court battle and was convicted of corruption charges in 1993. She was to serve a lengthy prison sentence, but the case was shelved. She eventually lost her title, the ‘First Lady’.
- She won her first election in the mid-1990s as a member of the House of Representatives - a position she held for several years. Although she is a successful politician in her own right, she still continues to face a number of legal charges.
- As her husband scaled the political ladder, Imelda Marcos’ lifestyle started being compared to that of another famous and fashionable first lady, Jacqueline Kennedy.
- The couple have three children together, two of whom are now politicians. They are Imee, Irene and Ferdinand Jr., who is also fondly known as ‘Bongbong’.
- While many Filipinos lived in scarcity and poverty, she became notorious for her extravagant spending, which often included expenses up to 5 million dollars or more in one go. She travelled to New York and other fancy destinations around the world to splurge on property and fashion.
- When this famous First Lady from the Philippines fled to Hawaii, she left behind a treasure’s chest containing jewelry worth millions, innumerable pairs of branded shoes, dresses and expensive paintings.
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