Alfredo "Fred" Siojo Lim (; December 21, 1929 – August 8, 2020) was a Filipino politician and police officer who served as a senator
from 2004 to 2007. He also served as the Mayor of Manila
twice: first from 1992 to 1998, and again from 2007 to 2013.
Prior to entering politics, Lim was a policeman for three decades. During the administration of President Corazon Aquino
, he was appointed as the Director of the National Bureau of Investigation
(NBI), serving from 1989 to 1992. In 1992, he was elected Mayor of Manila, serving for two consecutive terms. He then unsuccessfully ran for President in 1998
. Two years later, in 2000, he was appointed by President Joseph Estrada
as the Secretary of the Interior and Local Government
In 2001, he ran again for mayor of Manila but lost to then-incumbent Lito Atienza
. In the 2004 elections
, he ran for senator and won. Three years into his tenure in the Senate, he resigned in order to run for mayor of Manila, which he won and served two consecutive terms from 2007 to 2013. He then lost the 2013 and 2016 mayoral elections to former president Estrada. In 2019
, both Lim and Estrada lost the mayoralty elections to Isko Moreno
, who served as vice mayor during the two former mayors' respective terms.
Due to his tough stance against suspected criminals, Lim earned the nickname "Dirty Harry
Early life and career
Lim was born on December 21, 1929 at the Emmanuel Community Hospital along Calle Manuguit
, Tondo, Manila
, to Rosario Siojo, a Filipina with Chinese ancestry
from the Siojo family of San Miguel, Bulacan
. His father, Alfredo Lim, Sr., returned to his hometown Antique
. When he was in pre-school, his mother remarried and left him at the Hospicio de San Jose
. When he was in the third grade, he was put under the care of his maternal grandmother, Flora Valisno-Siojo. After his grandmother's death in 1943, he lived with his godmother
, Dolores La’o-Conde.
He finished primary school as a salutatorian
at the P. Gomez Elementary School in 1943. While in high school
, Lim studied in four different schools. He spent his first year at the Bohol Institute of Technology
and the next year at San Beda College
. He then transferred to UST High School
for his third year and then at the Far Eastern University
, where he graduated in 1948. He earned a degree of business administration in 1951 and a Bachelor of Law in 1963 at the University of the East
. In 1981, he finished his master's degree in national security administration with honours at the National Defense College of the Philippines
and pursued a Doctor of Philosophy in criminology
. He graduated in 1998 from Philippine College of Criminology.
When Lim began work in the police in the 1950s, one of his first accomplishments was arresting future senator Robert Barbers
for illegal possession of firearms. Then Manila Vice Mayor James Barbers tried to negotiate with Lim to release Robert Barbers without charges, but Lim nevertheless proceeded to file charges. A decorated police officer, Lim earned numerous commendations and awards. During the late 1980s, Lim helped defend the government of then-President Corazon Aquino
from leftist elements, such as leading the retaking of government installations from military rebels during one of the 1987 coup attempts. After retiring from the police, Lim was appointed Director of the National Bureau of Investigation
, where he lobbied for more funding and pay increases for agents and other employees. Since regular agents had to be fairly half of the force's positions were vacant, and there were few takers because of the low salary. Lim also lobbied for the position of special investigator which was realised to complement regular agents.
Mayor of Manila (1992–1998)
In 1992, Lim beat six opponents in the election to become mayor of the city of Manila
. As mayor, he worked on a strong law and order program which lessened crime. Lim worked on some projects to improve the city's image which had been bad when he assumed office. He pushed reforms in the city government. His slogan was "Magaling na Lider, Disiplinado" ().
Lim was re-elected in 1995. During his first two terms in office, he earned the nickname "Dirty Harry" for his tough anti-crime policies against suspected and convicted drug pushers, drug runners, and the city's red light districts, among others. He founded the City College of Manila
that would serve to complement Pamantasan ng Lungsod ng Maynila
. He resigned on 27 March 1998 to focus on his presidential campaign.
Presidential run and DILG Secretary (1998–2001)
Lim ran a failed bid for the presidency as the Liberal Party
nominee in the 1998 election
, garnering only 8.7% of the vote and finishing fifth in a field of eleven candidates.
In January 2000, his rival in the presidential election, President Joseph Estrada
, appointed him as Secretary of the Interior and Local Government
. His stint was cut short when Estrada was ousted during the second EDSA Revolution
the following year.
2001 mayoral elections
Lim ran against incumbent Jose Atienza
, his former ally and vice mayor, in 2001. However, he lost to Atienza by almost 80,000 votes.
Lim was elected Senator in the 2004 election
and the banner of the Koalisyon ng Nagkakaisang Pilipino (KNP)
. As a senator, Lim introduced legislation to bring back mandatory ROTC
, but this bill did not receive any co-sponsors.
Return as mayor (2007–2013)
In 2007, Lim decided run again for Mayor of Manila
. He won and defeated Atienza's son, Ali Atienza
; he thus gave up his Senate seat. Shortly after assuming office, he adopted the slogan ''"Linisin, Ikarangal (ang) Maynila"'' (, hence the acronym LIM). He ended the ban on holding rallies at Mendiola, which was initiated by his predecessor Lito Atienza, later modifying it by allowing rallies to be held there on weekends and holidays.
On July 16, 2007, Philippine National Police
(PNP) Director General Oscar Calderon asked him to revoke his ban to prevent militants from marching there. The PNP would recommend having protesters take their rallies to freedom parks. Calderon warned that if Lim will not change his position, the PNP will enforce the "no permit, no rally" policy. He ordered the removal of all business establishments, including bars and restaurants, in the Baywalk
area along Roxas Boulevard
(also another Atienza project) in an attempt to make the area a "wholesome park for everyone", with an unobstructed view of the famed Manila sunset. He claimed that many of these establishments have no business permits and were selling liquor, which is a violation of applicable city ordinances.
In December 2007, he told MMDA
Chairman Bayani Fernando
not to conduct its sidewalk clearing operations in Manila since vendors were allowed to sell on sidewalks for humanitarian reasons. He stated: "I jokingly told Chairman Fernando that they are welcome anytime but I cannot guarantee their safety. Their problem is how they will get out."
On March 14, 2008, Lim's son, Manny Lim, and two other suspects were arrested in a hotel along Tomas Mapua Street by PDEA
operatives during a buy–bust operation
. Manny had in his possession 100 grams of methamphetamine hydrochloride or shabu
On July 17, 2008, Councilor Dennis Alcoreza filed human rights
complaints before the Commission on Human Rights
, against Lim and other officials of the city of Manila. Alcoreza accused Lim of a violent takeover of a slaughterhouse in Tondo
on 11 July, and illegal dispersal of protest. Meanwhile, 24 councilors resigned from their posts as members and heads of the different committees, prompting a reorganization. The councilors unanimously denounced the violent treatment by Lim's Manila Police Department (MPD) towards Alcoreza during the city government's takeover of the slaughterhouse.
Lim resigned as head of Joseph Estrada's Pwersa ng Masang Pilipino
(PMP) in August 2008, following a PMP's executive committee resolution removing him as president of the party. He was replaced by Estrada, who is also the PMP chairman.
In October 2008, he made ROTC
training mandatory for all students at the Pamantasan ng Lungsod ng Maynila
(PLM) and the City College of Manila (CCM, now the Universidad de Manila
(UdM)), both city-owned colleges.
Lim ran for reelection in 2010
, with Vice Mayor Isko Moreno
as his running mate. Together, they defeated Lim's predecessor, Atienza, and his running mate, Councilor Bonjay Isip-Garcia. However, Atienza filed an electoral protest, citing discrepancies in the election returns and the consolidation and canvassing system. He later dropped his protest in January 2013.
On August 23, 2010, former police officer Rolando Mendoza hijacked
a tourist bus full of tourists from Hong Kong
in order to make demands on the government about a case against him at the Ombudsman
that led to his dismissal from service. The government's failure to negotiate properly with Mendoza led to the killing of eight hostages and of Mendoza himself after almost ten hours of stand-off. Justice Secretary Leila De Lima
was tasked to lead an investigation on the incident and determine whose negligence led to the tragedy. Her committee, the Incident Investigation and Review Committee (IIRC), found out that there were lapses on the part of Lim that led to the failed resolution of the hostage-drama, thereby recommending the filing of administrative and criminal cases against him and other officials. Malacañang
, however, declared Lim's liability was neglect of duty and misconduct. But, according to a report conducted by the late DILG Secretary Jesse Robredo
that was released on April 2013, he was found to have been "administratively liable" for the incident.
, he sought another term as mayor, with actor and Councilor Lou Veloso
as his running mate but they were defeated by Estrada and Moreno, respectively.
From 2004 to 2010 during his term as a Senator, Lim anchored the public service radio program ''Katapat: Mayor Fred Lim at DZMM'' of ABS-CBN
. With his team onboard researcher Joseph Arcaya, Executive Producer Dingdong Marco, DZMM Station Manager Angelo Palmones, and attorney Rey Bagatsing, the radio program helped solve many unsolved cases which became the last resort of the victims of crimes not only in Metro Manila but the entire Philippines. He also anchored ''Aksyon Ngayon
'', also on DZMM, with Kaye Dacer.
In 2015, Lim returned to the radio airwaves as co-anchor of ''Katapat at Karancho'', 8TriMedia's morning commentary program aired on DZRJ-AM
In the 2016 mayoral elections
, Lim ran again for mayor of Manila against the incumbent Joseph Estrada
, who replaced him in 2013. He chose 1st district
congressman Benjamin Asilo and later 5th district
councilor Ali Atienza
as his running mate for vice mayor, respectively. He lost to Estrada by a margin of 2,800 votes.
Lim attempted another comeback as mayor and ran in the 2019 elections
, chasing a fifth non-consecutive term against Estrada again and his former vice-mayoral and running mate Isko Moreno
. However, Lim placed third and Moreno emerged as the winner in the three-way race of notable candidates.
Lim, when not under the banner of a national political party, used the "Kapayapaan, Kaunlaran at Katarungan" () label, the party he founded to stand for election.
On August 8, 2020, Lim died after having tested positive for COVID-19
during the COVID-19 pandemic in the Philippines
. He was confined in a government-run hospital in Manila
prior to his death. His remains were then cremated and on August 29, were inurned at the Manila North Cemetery
In popular culture
Lim has appeared in films and television series. He was also portrayed by different actors in several films.
*Portrayed by Rudy Fernandez
in the 1977 film ''Alfredo Lim: Sa Kamay ng Ibabaw''.
*Portrayed by Ramon Revilla Sr.
in the 1990 film ''Target Police General: Major General Alfredo Lim Story''.
*Portrayed by Eddie Garcia
in the 1995 film ''Alfredo Lim, Batas ng Maynila''.
*Portrayed by Lim (himself) in the 1997 film ''Bobby Barbers: Parak''.
*Lim was hosting in the 1998 TV crime documentary drama series of ABS-CBN
's ''Katapat, Mayor Fred Lim''.
*Portrayed by Cesar Montano
in the 2013 film ''Alfredo S. Lim: The Untold Stories''.
*Alfredo Lim's Assets and LiabilitiesThe Official Website of the City of Manila
Category:People from Tondo, Manila
Category:Filipino people of Chinese descent
Category:Candidates in the 1998 Philippine presidential election
Category:Mayors of Manila
Category:Senators of the 13th Congress of the Philippines
Category:Secretaries of the Interior and Local Government of the Philippines
Category:University of the East alumni
Category:Filipino police officers
Category:Liberal Party (Philippines) politicians
Category:People's Reform Party politicians
Category:Pwersa ng Masang Pilipino politicians
Category:Estrada Administration cabinet members
Category:Directors of the National Bureau of Investigation of the Philippines
Category:Filipino politicians of Chinese descent
Category:Deaths from the COVID-19 pandemic in the Philippines
Category:Burials at the Manila North Cemetery