Twenty-two thousand runners converged in Quirino Grandstand to make a statement to revive the Pasig River by joining the Philippine International Marathon: A Run for the Pasig River on Sunday, (Nov 8).
Organized by Kapit Bisig para sa Ilog Pasig (KBPIP) and under the helm of race director Rudy Biscocho, the run with categories in 3 kilometer, 5 kilometer, 10 kilometer and 42 kilometer marathon, aims to boost awareness about the project as well as raise funds to rehabilitate the Pasig River. A unique feature of the race is a separate 42K full marathon ran by groups of 20 people per team.
Famous personalities such as Manila Mayor Alfredo Lim, Makati Mayor Jejomar Binay, Tessa Prieto-Valdez, Anthony Pangilinan, Maricel Laxa, and ABS-CBN newscasters Karen Davila and TJ Manotoc were also present to support the marathon.
Teary-eyed, ABS-CBN Foundation, Inc. (AFI) managing director Gina Lopez thanked students, corporations, government agencies and units, and other running enthusiasts who showed up as early as 3am to make a stand for the Pasig River cause.
Former President Fidel V. Ramos and former First Lady Ming Ramos lauded Lopez’s excellent efforts to continue what they started. The Philippine International Marathon was first established in 2000 by the Clean & Green Foundation headed by Mrs. Ramos. In 2008, the Clean & Green Foundation passed the torch of reviving the Pasig River to ABS-CBN Foundation, along with it the task of organizing the marathon as a fund-raiser for the effort.
ABS-CBN Foundation Inc. and the Department of Environment and Natural Resources through the Pasig River Rehabilitation Commission signed a Memorandum of Agreement last March 2008 to co-manage the rehabilitation of Pasig River and its tributaries a vital part of the Metro Manila basin and linked to Laguna Lake and Manila Bay. This gave birth to KBPIP, which was formally launched in February 2009. The top three winners for each category were: