THE UNIVERSITY offered its condolences to the family of former president Benigno “Noynoy” Aquino III, who died Thursday morning at the age of 61.

The Thomasian family joins the nation in praying for the eternal repose of the soul of the 15th President of the Republic of the Philippines, His Excellency Benigno “Noynoy” Simeon Cojuangco Aquino III,” UST said on its social media accounts.

“May the former President with his legacy of humility and integrity continue to serve as an inspiration to the country’s future leaders,” it added. 

The University remembered Aquino, who, in his words, recognized UST for having “educated the best the country has to offer” during the Quadricentennial celebration in 2011.

The late president died in his sleep at the Capitol Medical Center in Quezon City due to renal disease secondary to diabetes, according to his family. 

Aquino’s friends and former colleagues mourned his passing. 

Vice President Maria Leonor “Leni” Robredo, who belongs to Aquino’s Liberal Party, cited the ex-president’s moral rectitude.

“Nakakadurog ng puso ang balitang wala na si PNoy. Mabuti siyang kaibigan at tapat na Pangulo. He tried to do what was right, even when it was not popular,” Robredo said.

Aquino’s vice president, Jejomar Binay, said, “Noynoy and I may have had political differences during the last few years of his term, but that will not diminish the many years of friendship between our families.”

Ateneo de Manila University, where Aquino earned his bachelor’s degree in economics, also extended its condolences.

“Ateneo de Manila University is one with the Filipino nation in mourning the death of former President Benigno Simeon Cojuangco Aquino III, the 15th President of the Philippines and a distinguished Ateneo alumnus,” Ateneo said in its post.

Aquino served in the House of Representatives from 1998 to 2007 as representative of Tarlac’s second district and as a deputy speaker of the House from 2004 to 2006.

Aquino became a senator from 2007 to 2010 before being elected by a landslide as the 15th president of the Republic.

During his term, he changed the educational landscape in the country by implementing the K-12 curriculum through the Enhanced Basic Education Act of 2013, and passed a reproductive health law despite stiff opposition from Church leaders.

It was also under Aquino’s administration when the Philippines pursued the arbitral case against China after a standoff in the West Philippine Sea. 

In 2016, the Permanent Court of Arbitration in The Hague issued a unanimous award in favor of the country and rejected China’s sweeping claims over Spratly Islands and Scarborough Shoal. 

Aquino’s remains lie at Heritage Memorial Park in Fort Bonifacio, Taguig.


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