Palace pays tribute to Joker
THE PASSING of former Sen. Joker Arroyo “closes a life and a career spent in the midst of burning issues of public interest for half a century,” Malacañang said Monday.
In a statement, presidential spokesperson Edwin Lacierda said that as a lawyer and a legislator, Arroyo was outspoken.
“As a citizen, he was one of those who fought the (Marcos) dictatorship and served in the effort to restore our democracy,” Lacierda said. “This is the Joker Arroyo the country will remember.”
Lacierda added: “We extend our deepest sympathies to his family and loved ones in this time of grief.”
Communications Secretary Herminio Coloma Jr. said it took Malacañang a week to issue a statement on Arroyo’s passing “out of respect for (his) family.”
“We deferred comment pending their official confirmation (of Arroyo’s death),” Coloma said.
Arroyo died of cardiac arrest in the United States on Oct. 5 at age 88 after undergoing a heart surgery.
Senate President Franklin Drilon said the Arroyo family had requested that the Senate dispense with its traditional tribute to a deceased member.
Drilon said he had nevertheless directed the Senate to fly its flags at half-staff. Jerry E. Esplanada