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Politicians acknowledge the late President Benigno Aquino III’s contribution to the Philippines

Named as one of the 100 Most Influential People in the World by Time Magazine, people in government including his political adversaries couldn’t ignore the fact that he did his best for the country.

Many politicians paid their respects to the former Philippine President Benigno ‘Noynoy’ Aquino III after his passing on June 24 at age 61.

The Aquino family confirmed that Noynoy’s cause of death was a renal disease caused by diabetes.

Named as one of the 100 Most Influential People in the World by Time Magazine, people in government including his political adversaries couldn’t ignore the fact that he did his best for the country.

Shortly after his demise, Malacañang acknowledged the many achievements the Philippines saw during his administration.

“We commiserate and condole with the family and loved ones of former President Benigno Simeon Aquino III as we extend our condolences on his untimely demise,” said Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque in a press briefing.

“We are grateful to the former President for his contribution and services to the country.

“We ask our people to offer a prayer for the eternal repose of our former chief executive. Rest in peace, Mr. President.”

The public, meanwhile, is still waiting for President Rodrigo Duterte to give his reaction to the death of his predecessor.

Former Vice President Jejomar Binay also acknowledged that the relationship between the Binays and the Aquinos never turned sour despite his “political differences” with Noynoy in the later years of their term.

Both go way back and Binay already misses his “Pareng Noy.”

Vice President Leni Robredo considered Noynoy as a “good friend” and couldn’t believe that he is no longer around.

Robredo’s daughter, Tricia, shared a photo of her together with Noynoy, saying that “it’s been an honor.”

Associate Justice Marvic Leonen, who served as government peace panel chairman during Noynoy’s term, remembered him as a man whose main objective was to service the Filipino people.

Surprisingly, Secretary of Foreign Affairs Teddy Locsin Jr. praised the former Commander-in-Chief. Locsin wasn’t given a government position during the previous administration, which he was bitter about since his close relationship with actress Kris Aquino, Noynoy’s younger sister.

Senate President Vicente ‘Tito’ Sotto III and his colleagues extended their condolences to the Aquino family.

As Rappler reporter Mara Cepeda, many senators said they were devastated upon hearing the sad news.

“I am still shattered in million pieces, I just can’t believe am doing and typing this message. The nation lost a leader, and I, a friend. But he was more than that. He was a mentor, a brother to me,” said Senator Joel Villanueva said.

“PNoy spent his post-Presidency in the ways he wanted it to be: a simple man, plain Citizen Noy, a compassionate tito, never missing the perks and the powers he once wielded. Condolences and prayers to his dear sisters, family, and loved ones.”

Senator Ping Lacson expressed disappointment at how the previous administration was underappreciated.

“As our country’s leader, he did not deserve to be unappreciated. He served his country very well with humility, honor, and integrity,” he was quoted as saying.

Imee Marcos, the daughter of former President Ferdinand Marcos who allegedly ordered the assassination of Noynoy’s father, Benigno Aquino Jr., will remember him as the “classmate” in Congress who had a simple soul.

“I will always treasure the memories of our long years together as freshmen legislators and members of a tiny opposition. For beyond politics and much public acrimony, I knew Noynoy a kind and simple soul. He will be deeply missed,” she said.

Noynoy played a “major role” in Senator Sonny Angara’s current position in government, and the latter will never forget that.

“Rest well knowing that in time your own legacy will be remembered as it should be, from a perspective that is objective. You have earned your place in the annals of Philippine history. May the Lord bring comfort to PNoy’s siblings and rest of the Aquino clan,” he said.

Human rights lawyer Chel Diokno shared the time when Noynoy was there for him during trying times. Diokno feels like he “left us too soon.”

Flags in various areas in the country have already been lowered to honor the death of Noynoy, one of the few Philippine leaders who understood economics at a high level.

Despite the Die-hard Duterte Supporters’ downplaying Noynoy’s achievements, the record is out there, and it’s hard to deny what he did for the Philippines.

In 2012, Noynoy got the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) to enter a peace agreement that ended four decades of war. The country’s economy was booming, but political oppositions underlined the still-high unemployment rate.


His handling of the response to Super Typhoon Haiyan was also highly criticized. But unlike Duterte, Noynoy resisted China’s bullying in the South China Sea.

Written by JO-EST B. TAN

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