The country lost a remarkable public servant following the death of former Oriental Mindoro Rep. Reynaldo Umali, Cabinet Secretary Karlo Nograles said Thursday.
Umali passed away Thursday due to cardiac arrest, his family announced earlier. He was 63.
"The Nograles family expresses our deepest sympathies and condolences to the family of former Oriental Mindoro Rep. Reynaldo Umali," Nograles said.
"The nation has lost a brilliant legislator and remarkable public servant. We pray for his eternal repose," he added.
Nograles recalled that he and other lawmakers have been inspired by Umali's advocacies during the 15th to 17th Congress. Nograles served as lawmaker of the first district of Davao City before being appointed by President Duterte as Cabinet Secretary in 2018.
"Manong Rey was a colleague of ours at the House of Representatives from the 15th to 17th Congress," Nograles said.
"Fellow members, myself included, considered him a source of inspiration for his staunch positions and fiery advocacies particularly on issues affecting the Filipino people," he added.
Presidential spokesman Harry Roque also offered condolences to the family of Umali. The former lawmaker reportedly battled liver cancer and coronavirus disease prior to his demise.
"Bago po tayo magsimula, nakikiramay po kami sa pamilya at mga kasamahan ni former Oriental Mindoro 2nd District Congressman Reynaldo Umali (Before we start, we condole with the family and colleagues of former Oriental Mindoro 2nd District Congressman Reynaldo Umali)," he said during a televised press briefing.
Roque also sent sympathies anew over the death of Metropolitan Manila Development Authority Chairman Danilo Lim, who passed away Wednesday weeks after testing positive for the coronavirus.
"Nakikiramay kaming muli sa pamilya rin ni Chairman Danny Lim. Tayo po ay mag-alay ng sampung segundong silensyo para alalahanin po sila at ang lahat po ng pumanaw dahil po sa COVID-19 (We offer our condolences to the family of Chairman Danny Lim. Let's offer 10 seconds of silence to remember them and those who died due to COVID-19)," he said.