The Philippines has 7 new National Artists for 2009. They are: 1) Jose Carlo Caparas better known as Carlo J. Caparas (Visual Arts and Film), 2) Jose "Pitoy" Moreno (Fashion Design), 3) Cecille Guidote-Alvarez (Theater), 4) Manuel Urbano better known as Manuel Conde (Film and Broadcast Arts), 5) Lazaro Francisco (Literature), 6) Francisco "Bobby" Mañoza (Architecture), and 7) Federico Aguilar Alcuaz (Visual Arts, Painting, Sculpture, Mixed Media).
In the case of Manuel Urbano and Lazaro Francisco, the recognition is being rendered posthumously.
More on this story in this GMANews.tv article.
This early, I can see signs that one or two of these choices are bound to become controversial.