The late Senator Benigno “Ninoy” Aquino Jr. would have been the first to speak out against the deaths caused by bloody drug wars if he were alive today, Senate minority leader Franklin Drilon said on Monday.
Honoring what he called as “icon of democracy” on the 34th death anniversary, Drilon said in a statement that Ninoy would have been in the forefront of the fight against police impunity and the government’s consent if he were alive today.
“If Ninoy were alive today, he would have condemned the death of a teenager, a son, a child, a mother, and a father. Ninoy valued life as much as he valued freedom,” Drilon said. “If he were alive today, Ninoy would have been in the forefront of the fight against police impunity and the government’s acquiescence.”
“Let us not dishonor Ninoy’s sacrifice by trivializing human life,” Drilon added.
Drilon also said Ninoy would have rallied every Filipino to protect the democracy and the freedom those who came before us died for.
“Ninoy’s death allowed us to enjoy the freedom and the democracy we have today. We honor his death by constant vigilance, not complacency or complicity. I have every faith that the Ninoy in all of us, regardless of party, will prevail in protecting the blessings of independence and democracy under the rule of law and a regime of truth which he died for,” the senator said.
Senator Joel Villanueva also honored Aquino by calling on every Filipino to fight and die for democracy.
“Today, we commemorate the martyrdom of Benigno ‘Ninoy’ Aquino, Jr. It has been 34 years since one of the greatest modern heroes of our country proved that the Filipino people are worth dying for,” Villanueva said in a press release. “His heroic acts and ideals sparked the desire of the Filipinos to fight for liberty and most especially, to yearn for freedom from dictatorship.”
“We call on every Filipino to not let anything take away what is inherently ours. Let this day be a constant reminder about what the Filipino people once fought for and will always fight and die for — democracy,” Villanueva added.