Published: Tuesday 15 May, 2018

Why Pres. Duterte Called Ex-Senator Edgardo Angara as His ‘Defender’

President Rodrigo Duterte visited the wake of Edgardo Angara and paid tribute to the former senator. According to Duterte, he was a true diplomat who became his defender before the European Union (EU). Angara served as the Duterte administration’s Special Envoy to the EEU.

Duterte Angara wake

Duterte and Bong Go, with Senator Sonny Angara, at the wake of former senator Edgardo Angara. (Malacanang photo)

Accompanied by Special Assistant to the President Bong Go, Duterte went to Angara’s wake at Heritage Park in Taguig City early Tuesday morning. He was welcomed by Angara’s widow, Gloria, and son, Senator Sonny Angara, and the rest of the late senator’s family.

Duterte told reporters outside,”Siya ‘yung tagapagtanggol sa bunganga ko. Hindi kami nagkakaintindihan ng mga puti eh (He was the defender of my mouth before the EU. The white people and I cannot understand each other).”

“Senator Ed Angara is a humble, quiet person. He is really fit to be a diplomat. I can never be one ever,” the president added.

Edgardo Angara died of a heart attack on Sunday. He served as Senator from 1987 to 1998, and was the Senate president from 1993 to 1995. He was also Minority Floor Leader from 1995 to 1996. In 1999, he was appointed Department of Agriculture secretary by former president Erap Estrada.

In the 1998 presidential elections, Angara wanted to run for president but abandoned the idea due to the popularity of his would-be opponent, Erap Estrada. He then accepted Estrada’s offer to run as his vice president. He lost the vice presidential race to Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo.

Angara’s remains will be brought to the Senate on Wednesday for a necrological service. It will then be transferred to the University of the Philippines (UP), where he served as president from 1981 to 1987.

Edgardo Angara’s funeral is scheduled on Sunday in Baler.