By Vanne Elaine Terrazola
Senators paid tribute to former Congressman Roilo Golez, whom they consider a friend, a patriot, and “lover” of the people.
Golez, former lawmaker and national security adviser, died from heart attack Monday. He was 71.
“His courage, knowledge and wisdom will be deeply missed. He was the soldier and a gentleman to the hilt. A man of arms who worked for peace,” Senate Majority Leader Juan Miguel Zubiri said in a statement.
Zubiri described the late stateman’s knowledge on maritime issues as “beyond question,” having served as navy man in the country’s armed forces.
Zubiri also recalled Golez’ humility despite his expertise in diplomacy.
“Although he towered in the security and diplomatic circles, he was a lover of the common tao (people). His day was not complete without walking among the masa (public) in Parañaque and praying in Baclaran Church. He walked, shopped, dined, prayed and consoled the common man every day,” he said.
“We lost a great lawmaker, local government executive, a soldier and a friend,” he noted.
Sen. Nancy Binay, meanwhile, thanked Golez for his service in government, particularly his advocacy in national security.
“Rep. Golez was a voice of reason and conscience, a patriot who was vocal in various national security issues and concerns. His analyses of issues and words of advice will be missed,” she said.
“We thank him for his long and selfless service to the nation, starting as a Philippine Navy officer and continuing as postmaster general, governor of the Philippine Red Cross, and national security adviser, among others,” she added.
Sen. Joel Villanueva, meanwhile, took to Twitter his mourning on Golez’ death.
“Shocking to hear the sudden passing of Manong/Cong. Roilo Golez. He was a mentor and a great friend,” he posted.
“Condolences to his family and loved ones especially [Parañaque] Vice Mayor Rico Golez. You will be missed Manong Roy,” he added.
Sen. Paolo “Bam” Aquino also on Twitter expressed his “sincerest condolences and prayers” to Golez’ family.