Honor guards salute during the wake of the late former Senate president Aquilino Pimentel Jr. at the Heritage Memorial Park in Taguig City on Sunday.
Miguel De Guzman
Senators to pay final tribute to Nene Pimentel
Cecille Suerte Felipe, Paolo Romero (The Philippine Star) - October 22, 2019 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — Former and incumbent senators will pay tribute tomorrow to former Senate president Aquilino “Nene” Pimentel Jr., who died of cancer Sunday.

The flag has been at half-staff at the Senate since Sunday.

Senate President Vicente Sotto III, together with current and former senators, Senate Secretary Myra Villarica, Sergeant-At-Arms Rene Samonte, secretariat officials and employees will receive the remains of Pimentel at the foyer of the main entrance of the Senate building and bring them to the session hall.

Sotto will present a resolution to Pimentel’s family, expressing the Senate’s sympathy and condolence over the former Senate president’s passing.

Expected to deliver eulogies for the late senator are Sotto, Sen. Pia Cayetano and former senators Heherson Alvarez, Anna Dominique Coseteng, Jose Lina Jr., among others.

Sen. Aquilino “Koko” Pimentel III, son of the late Senate president, is expected to accept the resolution and give his response to the eulogies.

After the public viewing, the chamber will host an early lunch for the late senator’s family and relatives.

Described as one of the finest politicians and statesmen in the country’s history, Pimentel was one of the leading opposition figures during the Marcos regime.

He co-founded the Partido Demokratiko Pilipino-Lakas ng Bayan (PDP-Laban) and served as Senate president from 2000 to 2001.

As senator, he authored and sponsored landmark legislation such as the Local Government Code of 1991, the Cooperative Code, the Philippine Sports Commission Act, the Act creating the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao and the People’s Small-Scale Mining Act.

He also authored and co-sponsored the Generic Drugs Act and the Act Establishing the Philippine Police under a Reorganized Department of the Interior and Local Government.

Sen. Christopher Go said he was deeply saddened by Pimentel’s passing.

“Tatay Nene, as he is fondly called, was a fellow Mindanaoan and a staunch ally in fighting for advocacies he shared with Tatay Digong even before President Duterte’s administration until now,” Go said.

Go said he was grateful for the wisdom and support of Pimentel – one of the pillars of PDP-Laban – for the administration, especially during the 2016 and 2019 elections.

He said Pimentel was a visionary, democracy leader and a hardworking legislator.

“His death may leave us with a sad void and profound loss to his family and to our country he cared so much about. But his legacy shall forever be remembered and shall always guide us in shaping the destiny of our people,” he said.

Sen. Nancy Binay said Pimentel was “a mentor and a dear friend to our family.”

Binay credited Pimentel for giving her father, former vice president Jejomar Binay, his first shot at public service.

Pimentel and the elder Binay were colleagues at the Movement of Attorneys for Brotherhood, Integrity and Nationalism Inc., a group of human rights lawyers during martial law. They were also co-founders of PDP-Laban.

The senator said Pimentel and her father had been in the party ever since its humble beginnings as “Volkswagen party.”

“Our family shares the same emptiness left by someone everyone loves,” the lawmaker also said. “The nation lost a great man and a respected statesman.”

AQUILINO PIMENTEL JR
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