Universities honor Aquino: He represented Philippines with honor, dignity

Christian Deiparine (Philstar.com) - June 24, 2021 - 7:16pm

MANILA, Philippines — Top universities on Thursday hailed the late Benigno Aquino III for a leadership they said was marked by competence and humility, after the former president died this morning. 

Aquino, who ran on an anti-corruption platform known as "Daang Matuwid," and was chief executive from 2010 to 2016, passed away in his sleep at 61, according to his family. 

His alma mater Ateneo de Manila said he showed the country and the world "how leadership with competence, conscience, compassion, and commitment can bring about a marked difference in the lives of millions of people."

The son of two democracy icons, Ninoy and Cory, "Noynoy" as he was called finished his entire education in the Jesuit-run university. He graduated from grade school in 1973, high school in 1977, and with an economics degree in 1981.

"He will also be remembered for representing the Philippines with honor and dignity, elevating our country's status on the world stage," said Fr. Roberto Yap SJ, Ateneo's president. 

The University of the Philippines, meanwhile, said Aquino was a strong supporter of the higher education sector. 

In 2011, he was bestowed a Doctor of Laws degree, honoris causa, for "providing leadership in rallying the people to stamp out corruption, campaigning for institutional reforms,  and creating an environment for agencies, including the Armed Forces of the Philippines, to act with dispatch on malfeasance in government, promote the rule of law, and respect people’s constitutional rights.”

UP President Danilo Concepcion added: "He also understood the importance of high-value scientific research and innovation in the country and supported the various research initiatives within UP and collaborations between UP and the government sector."

The University of Santo Tomas has since sent its condolences, too. In a statement, it said: "May the former president with his legacy of humility and integrity continue to serve as an inspiration to the country's future leaders."

Aquino had graced the school's 400th founding anniversary in 2011.

His sisters said he had been "in and out" of the hospital for over a year before his passing. Doctors at the Capitol Medical Center in Quezon City pronounced him dead at 6:30, from renal disease secondary to diabetes.

There are no details yet on his burial and interment. 

As It Happens
LATEST UPDATE: June 27, 2021 - 2:10pm

Former President Noynoy Aquino was rushed to the Capitol Medical Center in Quezon City, where journalists are currently gathering following reports of his hospitalization. (File photo by Philstar.com/AJ Bolando)

June 27, 2021 - 2:10pm

Friends and supporters should now make the achievements and good work of the late President Noynoy Aquino known, says Vice President Leni Robredo.

Robredo, Aquino's Liberal Party colleague, says that telling truths about Aquino at every chance they get, now that he is gone, is an obligation.

"That what we failed to do, we could have exerted more effort to show that—not that we have to announce all his accomplishments—but to correct falsehoods about him," Robredo says on her weekly radio show on dzXL.

June 26, 2021 - 1:48pm

Former President Benigno Aquino III is laid to rest beside his parents, democracy icons Benigno Aquino Jr. and Cory Aquino, at the Manila Memorial Park.

June 26, 2021 - 1:41pm

The AFP chief presents the flag to the Aquino family.

June 26, 2021 - 1:31pm

The Aquino family blesses the urn containing the ashes of the former president.

June 26, 2021 - 1:24pm

The urn which contains the ashes of former President Aquino arrives in front of the tomb where the late president will be laid to rest next to his parents.

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