A Filipino man was awarded British Empire medal for serving 33 years at the British Embassy in Manila. He is a driver for different British envoys to the Philippines.
“Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II has honoured Mr. Roland Quitevis with the British Empire Medal for his services to UK-Philippine Relations,” says Daniel Pruce, British Ambassador to the Philippines. “This is a thoroughly well-deserved recognition of Roland’s long service at the Embassy, mostly spent as the Ambassador’s driver.”
Through a Facebook post, Quitevis recounts his experience throughout the three decades of his service to the British Embassy.
Quitevis is the official driver of eight British Ambassador and also drove for several British royal families.
“These include three visits by Prince Andrew, Duke of York, two visits by Princess Anne and a visit by Prince Charles. It has been such a memorable experience for me to meet each one in person,” he recounts.
In the recent visit of Princess Anne, she even remembered him as being very young back then.
“In fact, during the most recent visit of Princess Anne to the country, she commented that I was very young when she first came to Manila and visited the indigenous community in Clark in the aftermath of the 1991 Mount Pinatubo volcanic eruption,” he said.
Quitevis was first employed as a messenger at the embassy but after obtaining the necessary skills, he was able to get promoted into a driver.
“After I was regularised, I obtained the necessary skills and was promoted to become the official driver of the Ambassador,” Quitevis recounts. “I remember being so grateful for the opportunity, which is why I have always loved every single day of it — come monsoon rains, heavy Manila traffic and day-to-day encounters with British Embassy staff in action.”
Quitevis also felt grateful because the ambassadors treat him like family and with the utmost respect.
"I am delighted to announce that Her Majesty The Queen Elizabeth II has honoured Mr Roland Quitevis with the British…