Senate honors late former lawmaker Espina

Dharel Placido, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Sep 18 2019 01:15 PM

MANILA - The Senate on Wednesday honored the late former senator Rene Espina, who passed away on Friday due to kidney complications at 89 years old.

Senate President Vicente Sotto III led the upper chamber in honoring Espina, who was senator from 1970 to 1973, in a necrological service Wednesday.

“I salute the honorable Rene Espina for living that humble and simple life of a public servant away from the fanfare of self-praise and the selling of dreams, but simply finding comfort in the thought that here was a man who lived so that his countrymen may enjoy the benefits of his labor,” Sotto said.

Former Senate President Juan Ponce Enrile also paid tribute to Espina.

“He was kind. He was considerate. He was a real gentleman. For all the more than 30 years I had him as a friend, I never heard him say anything against anyone. He was an honorable man,” Enrile said.

“For us the living, whom he will leave behind, we will always feel the pain of his departure.”

Espina crafted the first anti-drug law, the Dangerous Drugs Act of 1972, a precursor of Republic Act 9165 or the Comprehensive Dangerous Drugs Act of 2002. He served as the youngest administrator of the Social Security System at the age of 33.

Espina was also governor of Cebu from 1963 to 1969 and secretary of the Department of Public Works, Transportation, and Communication under the Marcos administration.