There will be no necrological services for late senator Joker Arroyo at the Senate.
This was announced on Thursday by Senate President Franklin Drilon as he said that even as Arroyo’s passing was announced in the media, the family is yet to formally notify the Senate of his demise.
“The word that reached me is that [the family does not want]any necrological services in the Senate. That’s the message sent to me,” Drilon told reporters.
The flag at the Senate grounds at the reclamation area in Pasay City (Metro Manila) was nonetheless flown at half-staff as a symbol of mourning.
Arroyo reportedly passed away last Monday after an unsuccessful heart surgery. He was 88.
A human rights lawyer during the dark days of the Marcos regime, Arroyo served as the first executive secretary of President Corazon Aquino and was congressional representative of Makati City (Metro Manila) for nine years. He led the prosecution panel in then-President Joseph Estrada’s impeachment trial before he got elected for two consecutive terms in the Senate. He retired from politics in 2013.
His last public appearance was in January when he and former senator Rene Saguisag appeared in the Senate as lawyers for embattled Makati City Mayor Jejomar Erwin “Junjun” Binay Jr.
A source of The Manila Times said Arroyo’s remains would be cremated and the ashes would be taken back to the country by weekend.
Bicolanos are grieving over the senator’s death. Arroyo was born in Naga City, Camarines Sur, while his family hails from Baao town.
He completed his elementary education at the Naga Central School I and secondary education at the Camarines Sur National High School, also in Naga City.
Albay Gov. Joey Salceda expressed the grief of Albayanos and ordered all flags in the capitol as well as government buildings all over the province be flown at half-staff.
“To pay tribute for Arroyo’s historic contribution to the nation and to Bicol Region, we’re asking that all flags in public offices to remain in half-mast until after former senator Arroyo is buried,” he said.
Rep. Christopher Co of Ako Bicol also expressed sadness over the death of the Bicolano lawmaker.
“Farewell to an exemplary Bicolano whose great deeds and principles will be forever etched in the hearts and minds of the next generation of Bicolano leaders,” Co said.
With RHAYDZ B. BARCIA