The board of trustees, members, and secretariat of the Philippine Press Institute (PPI) are saddened by the passing of media icon and seasoned newspaper man Amado 'Jake' P. Macasaet who was a long-time chairman-president of the PPI from 1996 to 2012.
He represented Malaya in the board as publisher. He was conferred chairman emeritus in 2013, the first and only recognition so far bestowed by the institute to a former chairman.
"He is a great loss to the industry and will be missed for sure," noted Al Pedroche, PPI's current chairman.
Sir Jake was instrumental in making sure that the 54-year old organization sticks to its mandate and "not be used by anyone or any politician or organization".
Ariel Sebellino, PPI executive director remembers Sir Jake as straightforward. "He doesn't like so much or many frills in our events. When I introduced some, he would say, 'Anong kaartehan na naman 'yan, Ariel. Pero maganda naman.' These are just some of his unforgettable lines," Sebellino reminisced.
He worked with him for 16 years, preparing reports for him and 'coaching' him spiels for his remarks in PPI's big events.
Sir Jake was a staunch advocate of decriminalizing libel, among other matters that sorely affect the media.
Allan Mediante, PPI vice-president also recalled his fondness for Sir Jake. "For the first time during his time, we were able to do our board meeting and oathtaking as officers outside Metro Manila. At first we thought, he did not want to fly. But he agreed that we hold it in Cagayan de Oro," Mediante said.
Presidential Adviser on Peace Process Jesus 'Jess' Dureza mused that during the turnover of chairmanship to him by Sir Jake in 2013, the latter declared during the annual membership meeting, "you're in good hands".
PPI staff also had funny moments with him. "Nakakatuwa siya. Malakas lang talaga boses niya pero maalaga. Favorite niya ang ginataang tilapia pag board meeting namin sa office," Nemy Joquiño said. She usually calls Sir Jake to remind him of PPI events.
"Sir Jake's legacy wil live on. I will always remember his reminders to me, usually during pep talks as we puffed together," Sebellno added.
The Philippine Press Institute condoles with the Macasaets.