GMA, Mike leave for US ahead of PNoy

PNS — PAMPANGA Rep. Gloria Arroyo left with her husband for New York Thursday night ahead of her successor, President Benigno Aquino III, to attend the Clinton Global Initiative, which is being held next week on the eve of the United Nations General Assembly that Mr. Aquino is attending.

An Arroyo aide said the former President was personally invited by former US President Bill Clinton, her classmate in Georgetown University, to participate in the 6th Clinton Global Initiative annual meeting of world leaders, which is being held at the Sheraton New York on Sept. 20 to 23.

The aide said Mrs. Arroyo would be visiting Munich, Germany, for a Filipino community event before flying to New York City in time for another conference, which is being hosted by Queen Rania Al-Abdullah of Jordan for the Millennium Development Goals for women and children.

US First Lady Michelle Obama and former US First Ladies Hillary Clinton and Laura Bush will also be attending the Clinton conference.

The other attendees are Haiti Prime Minister Jean-Max Bellerive; Liberia President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf; Cherie Blair of the Cherie Blair Foundation for Women; Virgin Group chairman Richard Branson; Cisco chairman John Chambers; Avon chairman Andrea Jung; Melinda Gates; Coca-Cola chairman Muhtar Kent; Alcoa chairman Klaus Kleinfeld; Procter and Gamble president Robert McDonald; Google chairman Eric Schmidt; Tata Group chairman Ratan Tata; Yahoo! co-founder Jerry Yang; and Grameen Bank founder Muhammad Yunus.

The annual Clinton conference brings together world leaders from all sectors of society to develop and then implement workable solutions to some of the world’s most pressing issues.

Throughout the event, conference members share successful strategies, forge partnerships, and gain practical insights that they can use to enhance their work on economic empowerment, education, environment and energy and global health.

Since 2005, the Clinton annual meetings have brought together more than 125 current and former heads of state, 15 Nobel Peace Prize laureates, hundreds of leading chief executives, heads of foundations, major philanthropists, directors of the most effective non-governmental organizations, and prominent members of the media.