Joker Arroyo more than just ‘The Scrooge’—Recto
This was how Senate President Pro Tempore Ralph Recto described former Senator Joker Arroyo, who passed away Monday. The two senators belonged to the so-called Wednesday Group at the Senate.
“Joker earned sobriquets in his storied life. The Great Dissenter. The Maverick. The Defender. He was even called The Scrooge for his economical use of office funds,” Recto said in a statement on Wednesday.
“But there was one area he didn’t scrimp on. And that was offering his sharp legal mind, for free, to those who need it most but can afford it least. If he had a good heart, it was because his favorite form of exercise was to bend down and pull someone out of the gutter.”
“Which he did when he was still Citizen Joker. When he arrived at the Senate, he already had a life’s worth of achievements, great victories he won without wearing the mantle of parliamentary immunity. This country owes much of its freedom to him, as do hundreds whose liberty he secured,” he further said.
Recto also described Arroyo Joker as an “incorrigible fiscalizer.”
“He loved to tilt the windmills and tussle with the powerful. He was a solitary gunfighter, drawing strength from the righteousness of his crusade, never taking comfort in the number of people who share his belief,” he said.
“Joker Arroyo was a patriot first class. Having walked in his shadows, I will always remember him as the boy in the fable who had the courage and the candor, who never failed and never tired, to shout that the emperor was wearing no clothes.”
“In our next Wednesday Group dinner, we will raise a glass to you,” the senator added.
The other members of the group are former Senators Manny Villar and Francis Pangilinan, and former Vice President Noli de Castro. IDL