We are deeply saddened with the sudden passing of Engr. Mon Ramirez today (August 28) due to illness. He has been AGHAM’s foremost Engineer for the People. His contribution in the fulfillment of making science and technology serve the people is unparalleled. This has been reflected in the various programs and projects of AGHAM to respond to the needs of the community. We will cherish your legacy, Engr. Mon Ram. Paalam at salamat.

Tribute to MonRam

AGHAM together with other organizations have organized a tribute last September 5 at the Bantayog ng mga Bayani. You can watch the live broadcast on our Facebook page with the following links (click the text on the image):

Below is Dr. Giovanni Tapang’s 2011 column published on The Manila Times featuring Monram.

The glue that binds us

THIS coming Saturday, June 25, the University of the Philippines Alumni Association (UPAA) will recognize forty outstanding graduates for the year 2011 in an award ceremony during the UP General Alumni-Faculty Homecoming and Reunion at the Bahay ng Alumni in UP Campus. The UPAA Distinguished Alumni Awards are conferred to alumni who have brought about substantial benefits to society and brought distinct honor to the University in their various fields of expertise and work.

One of the awardees this year is an electrical engineer who has excelled not only in his field but has touched the lives of many by devoting his profession and passion to the grassroots. Ramon Ramirez BS EE ’66, better known as Monram or Mang Mon to people’s organizations and friends, has become a model of how to make science and technology relevant and meaningful to the people. Together with Dr. June Pagaduan-Lopez, they are to be awarded the UPAA Distinguished Alumni Awards for Social Cohesion.

Monram entered UP in 1961 as an entrance scholar after finishing as valedictorian at the Albay High School. He obtained the Eleuterio Go Memorial and the ESSO scholarships at the College of Engineering during his stay in the University. In 1967, Mang Mon topped the electrical engineering board exam and proceeded to work as an engineer in various firms during the tumultuous times of the late 1960s.

He later joined the Samahan ng Makabayang Siyentipiko (SMS), a group of patriotic scientists and engineers from UP Diliman during the First Quarter Storm of the 1970s. Since then, he has actively offered his expertise and skills as an engineer to various people’s organizations and the whole movement. In 1999, he was among the founding members of Agham—Advocates of Science and Technology for the People and has remained an active member of the organization since then.

He has also helped convene the People Opposed to Warrantless Electricity Rates or POWER which has been at the forefront of protecting the consumer against unreasonable power rate increases. His knowledge and skills as an electrical engineer enabled POWER to make a thorough analysis of the privatization of the power industry, the Electric Power Industry Reform Act (EPIRA) and the infamous Power Purchase Adjustment (PPA).

Aside from being a direct participant in changing Philippine society, Monram also finds time to document various events and struggles of the current times. He helps maintain the website www.arkibongbayan.org which contains photo-histories and commentaries on the Filipino people’s struggles. Long before photoblogs were in vogue, Monram already provided the world with a glimpse of local struggles through his camera. In preparing for the requirements of the UPAA awards, it is perhaps not surprising to find out that he has only a few “action” photos since Mang Mon is usually behind the camera rather than the one being photographed.

Working behind the scenes and giving all his talent and skills to engineering our society, Monram is a fitting recipient to the UPAA Distinguished Alumni Award for Social Cohesion. In building a better society, Mon’s sense of service and conviction for welfare of the people is part of the glue which binds us all.

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