Special envoy to Malaysia Wencelito Andanar, the father of Presidential Communications Secretary Martin Andanar, passed away on Thursday, April 22.
In a statement, Andanar said his father succumbed to liver cancer at 7:50 a.m. on April 22 at the Veteran’s Memorial Medical Center.
Andanar described his father as a “man of service” who dedicated his professional years as a public servant in different government agencies. Wencelito Andanar served as OIC Governor of Surigao del Norte from 1986 to 1988. Consequently, he served as the Chairman of the Philippine Coconut Authority (PCA) from 1982 to 1992.
During the administration of President Corazon Aquino, the late Andanar was appointed as Presidential Assistant from 1989 to 1992. He was also the Undersecretary of the Department of the Interior and Local Government from 2001 to 2007.
In 2018, he was appointed as the Special Envoy of President Duterte to Malaysia. He bridged the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region of Muslim Mindanao (BARMM) to the global market. Despite the pandemic, he was able to continue to work with the Malaysian government and assist in the repatriation efforts for overseas Filipinos.
According to Andanar, his father was his inspiration for joining public service.
“My father was the greatest man and mentor I have ever known. He was my idol and I looked up to him, so much, that he inspired me to join public service,” he said.
The Palace official said Wencelito’s legacy will remain in the hearts of those who know him.
“I know I speak for many when I say that we have lost not just a remarkable civil servant but a pillar in our lives. He may no longer be with us, but his deeds and his legacy will continue to live on in our hearts,” Andanar said.
“Paalam (Goodbye), Papa! Thank you for being a brother, a father, a confidant, and a friend,” he added.
“You had a life well-lived. You are a lifelong example of leadership and selflessness. When I meet you in the sun, I shall tell you much,” he continued.