MORALES, Horacio "Boy"


MANILA, Philippines - Former Agrarian Reform Secretary Horacio "Boy" Morales died Wednesday afternoon. He was 68. Morales suffered a massive heart attack last December 1 in Baguio City and had been in hospital for treatment. He had been in a coma and died past 5 p.m. at the Philippine Heart Center on Wednesday, a source close to the family told

The source said Morales died from complications from the heart attack. Infections had spread to his lungs and his body apparently failed to respond to medication. Morales was preparing for the final day of the 62nd Fil-Am Invitational Golf Tournament at the Baguio Country Club last December when he suffered the heart attack. Morales had a long history of heart problems and had already undergone a heart bypass. His remains will be cremated and will lie in state starting 6 p.m. Thursday at Loyola Marikina. His interment is tentatively scheduled on Sunday.

Morales was a young technocrat of the Marcos regime but went underground and joined the National Democratic Front (NDF) after winning a Ten Outstanding Young Men of the Philippines (TOYM) award in 1977. He was later arrested, tortured while under military detention. He was freed by then-President Cory Aquino after the February 1986 EDSA revolution. He sought a Senate seat under the leftist Partido ng Bayan in 1987 but lost. Former President Joseph Estrada appointed him secretary of the Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR) in 1998.

Morales was also president of the Philippine Rural Reconstruction Movement (PRRM), one of the oldest rural development organizations in the country, from 1986 to 1998. He was credited for helping revive the then-fledling NGO. At the time of his death, Morales was the president of the La Liga Policy Institute, a policy research and advocacy group on effective governance and sustainable development. Morales was an alumnus of the UP School of Economics. He also served as chairman of the board of the Development Academy of the Philippines from 1999 to 2001. He was executive director of the Cooperative Foundation of the Philippines from 1986 to 1998. Morales was born in Moncada, Tarlac. His son, Paul Alexander Morales, is an independent film director.