Press Release
May 16, 2018

Senate pays tribute to former Senator Angara

Two former presidents as well as current and former senators paid tribute to the late Senator Edgardo Angara during the necrological rites held at the Philippine Senate in Pasay City Wednesday, May 16, 2018. Angara passed away last Sunday at the age of 83.

Senate President Aquilino "Koko" Pimentel III presented Senate Resolution No. 105 to the Angara family expressing the Senate's sympathy and condolences on the death of the former senator.

The resolution recognized Angara's achievements as a public servant, statesman, educator, lawyer and senator from 1987-1992; 1992-1998; 2001-2007 and 2007-2013.

In his eulogy, Pimentel said that the life of the late senator was never idle. He served his mission to end without wasting his time.

"Senator Ed Angara's achievements should inspire us in our works. We should all look up to him as a paragon of what a senator of our republic should be," Pimentel said.

" As a lawmaker, the laws he authored, sponsored or supported made a significant impact in the fields of education, health, social welfare, agriculture, good governance, energy, environment, and even cultural arts," he added.

Former President Joseph Ejercito Estrada, who was the first to speak among Angara's friends and colleagues, lamented the senator's death and praised his achievements as a legislator and as an educator who changed many Filipino lives for the better.

"We have lost a public servant of the highest integrity, a legislator with compassion and an intellectual with a heart for the poor and a champion of education," Estrada said.

Former President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo called Angara a "giant among legal luminaries, an accomplished educator and a skillful and principled public servant."

Arroyo said Angara was a young delegate at the Constitutional Convention in 1971 when her father, then the president of the Convention, identified Angara as one of the young turks who was destined for a bright political future.

"He wore so many hats, and he wore them well. Today, in these halls of the Senate, where Ed and I and many of us here spent six fulfilling years together, let me give a grateful send-off to the public servant who to me, was a kind and mild-mannered mentor," Arroyo said. Senate President Pro-Tempore Ralph Recto said Angara had authored so many laws after Edsa I that if they were to be indexed by authorship, like the bible, it would be voluminous. He said Angara authored so many education laws that they require a different catalogue.

"Not only were his laws many, they were meritorious. Today, they are valued as national assets. Each of the law that was polished by his wisdom has been improving the lives of those who benefit from it," Recto said.

"He believed that any child can go as far and as fast as his education can take him," Recto added.

Senate Majority Leader Vicente "Tito" Sotto III said Angara opened the doors of the classrooms to all Filipinos, knowing that a good education is the greater equalizer of chances and opportunities.

"He was an architect and engineer of many social institutions, laying the foundations on which stand the pillars of the nation's laws on health, education, social justice, culture and arts," Sotto said.

Senate Minority Leader Franklin Drilon, who was with Angara the day before he passed away, said the demise of his friend came as a shock to him.

"When I first heard the news, it felt like the rug was pulled out from under my feet. Ed and I had breakfast at Hong Kong Shangri-La hotel two Sundays ago and last Saturday, I was one of the last people who saw Ed and enjoyed his company just hours before he quietly passed on," Drilon said.

"Ed hosted a merienda cena at his house in Tagaytay. He was in a jovial mood and seemed to be in good health - and talked animatedly about his life away from politics. He even showed us his Art House, where he planned to put on display his memorabilia. Ed was a jewel of a friend - a man who had my highest respect and admiration. It is not a secret that he was a major influence in my professional and political life," according to Drilon.

Former Senate President Aquilino "Nene" Pimentel, Jr., father of current Senate President Koko Pimentel, said Angara wanted the Filipinos to realize, especially the poor and marginalized, that education can take them away from poverty and the dehumanizing effects of degradation.

Former Senator Pia Cayetano, who was pretty close to Angara since she was a child, gave an emotional eulogy to the "tito" she missed. She said that over the years it "no longer surprised her that so many of the legislation she worked on were also his pet bills." She said Angara was happy that they shared the same interest and invited her to attend meetings with experts in the field.

"Our common interest went beyond the work in the Senate. He'd always say that I was like a daughter to him," an emotional Cayetano told the audience at the plenary hall.

Senator Sonny Angara thanked his father's friends and colleagues for paying their last respects to his father. He said his father love the Senate and loved its people as well as treasured the time he spent in the Upper Chamber.

"He said the Senate is like being on a high promontory in the Philippines with an unobstructed view. He called them the best years of his life and the relationships he formed and time he spent here (Senate.) Salamat po sa lahat ng tributes. We learned so much and everything you said is like a golden memory that we will treasure for as long as we live," Angara said.

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