Senators mourn passing of former Senate Sergeant at-Arms
MANILA, Philippines – Senators on Sunday mourned the demise of former Senate Sergeant- at- Arms Jose Balajadia Jr.
Senate President Pro Tempore Ralph Recto expressed his sadness over Balajadia’s passing as he recalled how the former Senate Sergeant-at-Arms shared his military experiences with him.
“So sad. He was a good man. Was a friendly person. He shared stories and military experiences with me. My thoughts and prayers are with him and family,” Recto said in a text message.
Senator Richard Gordon also paid tribute to Balajadia, calling him an “a decent and extremely competent man and soldier.”
“I am deeply saddened by the sudden demise of former Senate Sergeant-at-Arms Jose Balajadia, Jr. this morning. He was a good friend and our partner in the Blue Ribbon Committee and was very instrumental in ensuring the safety and security in the Senate,” Gordon said in a tweet.
Senator Grace Poe, meanwhile, thanked Balajadia for keeping them safe in the Senate.
“While our hearts are heavy, they are also filled with gratitude. Thank you for keeping us always safe in the Senate, General Balajadia,” Poe said in a statement.
Senator Francis Pangilinan, a member of the Senate minority bloc, thanked Balajadia for his contributions, including escorting Senator Leila De Lima in 2017 when she was detained over her alleged involvement in illegal drug activities.
“It is now our time to say ‘All rise’ for a man of passion and dedication,” Pangilinan said in a statement.
“Salamat sa iyong paglilingkod sa institusyon, General Balajadia, sa isa sa pinakamapaghamong mga panahon ng Senado, kabilang na ang paghuli kay Sen. de Lima at ang pagtangkang paghuli kay Sen. Trillanes. Our deepest sympathies to the family of the longest serving Sergeant-at-Arms in the history of the Philippine Senate,” the senator added.
Senate President Vicente “Tito” Sotto III earlier confirmed Balajadia’s death.
Sotto said that Balajadia had been “suffering from a number of ailments lately.”
Balajadia resigned from his Senate post last June 30, Sotto said. (Editor: Gilbert S. Gaviola)
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