Caligdong was among the seven awardees this year who were recognized by President Benigno Aquino III at the awarding ceremonies held at the Rizal Hall in the Presidential Palace.
Aquino praised the 30-year-old homegrown hero of the Azkals, who brought a whole new awareness to football in this country, in his speech, posted at gov.ph, to all the awardees.
“We have Chieffy Caligdong, who evokes that feeling of pride in all Filipinos whenever he scores in the football matches of our Philippine Azkals,” said Aquino.
Every year, selected outstanding Filipinos who have excelled in their respective fields are being recognized through the TOYM award.
“You may come from different fields, but the award you are being honored with today will be something you will all have in common for the rest of your lives,” Aquino said.
“Beginning today, you are no longer merely private individuals but symbols—symbols that clearly show our countrymen and the rest of the world that the Filipino is world-class and that no matter how successful he or she becomes, the Filipino never loses the spirit of bayanihan and always comes back to help his fellow men. This is what we see in the people we honor today, ” Aquino added.
International singer apl.de.ap, legislator Emmeline Aglipay, broadcaster Jiggy Manicad, blogger Ivan Henares, veterinarian Warren Baticados, and occupational therapist Abellardo David were the other awardees.