APPA-Filipino Thanksgiving Night

Thanksgiving Night

(Delivered on the occasion of the APPA – Filipino Thanksgiving Night

August 11, 2004, Centennial Hall, Manila Hotel)


Atty. Dominador D. Buhain



To the IPA President Ana Maria Cabanellas, APPA President Mr. Choon Ho Na, to my colleagues in the local and regional book publishing industry, good evening to everyone on the occasion of the APPA-Filipino Publishers Fellowship and Thanksgiving Night.


Among the speeches that have been delivered during the last three days related to the 2004 AGA and Publishing Forum, I consider tonight’s brief speech as the most heartfelt.


Before I proceed with my speech, the gold, silver and bronze plaques are prepared in honor of the founders and officers of PEPA namely Dr. Ernesto Y. Sibal, Mr. Jesus Ernesto Sibal and Mr. Miguel Picache.


Without whose ideals or noble constitutional framework, PEPA would not have banded together and increased its membership to date to pursue a common aspiration of making books by Filipinos, of Filipinos and for Filipinos as well as to advocate for the removal of unjustified governmental interventions.


The plaques may not be as elaborate but the surrounding circumstances or spirit within which they shall be given are reminiscent of the  PEPA members’ heroic advocacy for the enhancement of the local book publishing industry.


By reason of such historical and constitutional framework, PEPA is now proud to say that it’s not alone in its struggle for the survival and growth of the local book publishing industry under the constitutionally guaranteed freedom of expression which includes the “freedom to publish” as it now receives regional (through the APPA) and global (through the IPA) support and endorsement.


This is further highlighted by APPA’s choice of Manila as the host city of the 11th AGA and 12th Publishing Forum during the 2002 AGA in Bangkok, Thailand which was subsequently affirmed during the 2003 AGA in New Delhi, India.


The regional and global publishing event hosted by PEPA would not have materialized without the unselfish cooperation of the members in the form of money donated, resources utilized, effort exerted and time devoted.


The John F. Kennedy doctrine laid down by Director Jerry Catabijan (St. Mary’s Publishing) in his article at the PEPA News that the appropriate attitude should be what you can do to the association and not what the association can do for you was somewhat given realization.


The preparation for the event started immediately during the preceding two years as cited above although the solicitation of funds was put into a high gear during the succeeding seven months after the 2003 Yuletide celebration.


The PEPA-APPA Committee with acronym PAPCOM is under the leadership of Ms. Florinia Espiritu Santo as Chairman (ABC Publishing), Mr. Jorge Garcia (Abiva Publishing House) as Vice-Chairman and Treasurer, with Mr. Jerry Catabijan, Ms. Medy Garces (EMGEE Enterprises) as Auditor, Ms. Beth Fabillaran (Fabi’s Enterprises), Ms. Cristy Ramirez (Cesty Trading), Ms. Lina Enriquez (Bookman, Inc.) and Ms. Lee Ulangca (REX Book Store, Inc.).


After the Yuletide celebration, PAPCOM meetings were conducted almost weekly for seven months. There were even breaking up moments but the same were immediately overwhelmed with the desire to help the association in order that it could not be placed in an embarrassing situation with the regional and global communities.


The PAPCOM Chairman even took the bold steps of expressing deep concern  with the keynote speaker during the moment of indecision.


Though they are outside the core of PAPCOM, PEPA appreciates the heavy contributions which include the printing of PEPA General Assembly and APPA Publishing Forum souvenir programs, highly conspicuous backdrops, flyers, program of activities and ushering manpower of Vibal Publishing, SD and JTW Publications under the leadership of Ms. Esther Vibal, Ms. Nila Mata and Mr. Julius Magno respectively and special efforts of associates Carina Espino and Glenda Torio not only in the 2003 PEPA General Assembly and Christmas Party but also in the 2004 AGA and Publishing Forum.


Dr. Juanita Guerrero (SIBS Publishing House) together with Ms. Rosa Sese (Bookman, Inc.) were instrumental in providing publicity in the newspapers, t.v., as well as in providing pointers on protocol tidbits.


Fr. Richard Varela (Salesiana) was there to provide spiritual boost to the weary PAPCOM members. Mr. Jorge Garcia, Ms. Lina Enriquez and Ms. Medy Garces ensured that the funds were effectively utilized. Ms. Edna Tupas (Academe Publishing House) played a pivotal role in fine-tuning the protocol requirements the Asian Institute of Management (AIM) way as well as emceeing the Publishing Forum with Director Jerry Catabijan.


Ms. Beth Fabillaran, aside from winning the fund-raising contest, was always there to provide a helping hand. Ms. Cristy Ramirez, aside from ensuring that all paraphernalia like trophies, etc. were secured, was continuously present to provide a helping hand and so with Ms. Medy Garces, Auditor who won also the 2nd prize in the fund-raising.


Recognition is again given to Director Jerry Catabijan and Vice Chairman Jorge Garcia for their unselfish actuations and motivations in ensuring that the affair was successfully implemented and to the PEPA Secretariat with Lee Ulangca and Cristal Sy  for their gargantuan assistance.


Last but more importantly, overall credit should be given to its Chair in the person of  Ms. Florinia Espiritu Santo.


I beg for your kind indulgence if I would not be able to give recognition to numerous people and entities who supported this important event. May I therefore request the PAPCOM  and Treasurer to submit the status of the financial condition as well as the  individual contributions and expenditure at the opportune time for the information and approval of the board and membership.


At this juncture, due to the limited time allotment given by Chairman Jorge Garcia, may I just say Mabuhay to PEPA and its members as well as to the APPA delegations for ensuring the success of the 2004 AGA and Publishing Forum.


Thank you very much and enjoy the night by dancing. Safe journey to our  publishing colleagues in the Asia Pacific and the world.


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