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Senators mourn passing of ‘LGU champ’ Nene Pimentel

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Senators were one in expressing their grief Sunday (October 20) over the death of former senator Aquilino “Nene” Pimentel Jr.

Senate President Vicente “Tito” Sotto III said he felt like he lost a close relative.

“I was his Majority Leader when he was Senate President and we were very close. He was my idol!” he said in a statement.

Senate President Pro Tempore Ralph Recto remembered Pimentel as a “great builder” of local autonomy, grassroots democracy, Mindanao development and ethics in public service.

“Many laws of the land have been enriched by the wisdom he selflessly shared. He acted as the people’s watchman in the Senate who guarded their interests, often as a one-man checkpoint who shone a lantern on the bills before they were passed,” he said.

Senator Panfilo Lacson said his fondest memory of Pimentel was the latter’s advice for him to answer the allegations against him during the Arroyo administration.

Senator Francis Pangilinan thanked Pimentel for his contributions to the country.

“Sa ngalan ng aking pamilya sa pakikibaka, nagpapasalamat ako sa ibinahagi niyang buhay para sa karapatang pantao, kalayaan, at demokrasya noong panahon ng diktadura. Salamat” he said.

Senator Sherwin Gatchalian called Pimentel as the “champion” of local government units (LGUs).

“Because of his landmark measure, the Local Government Code of 1991, Pimentel has empowered LGUs across the country by allowing them to create their own source of revenue and enable them to levy taxes and fees, among others,” he said.

Senator Sonny Angara said Pimentel was a “lawmaker’s lawmaker, both in intelligence to craft or critique laws and the discipline to consistently do it.”

Senator Richard Gordon remembered Pimentel as a “dedicated public servant” who continued to voice out his opinions on important matters affecting the country even after he retired from politics.

Senator Aquilino “Koko” Pimentel III said his father died due to lymphoma or cancer of the lymph nodes. His wake starts Sunday and will continue until October 25.

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