Why Baseco’s first hospital is named after the late former Pres. Cory Aquino

Katrina Domingo, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Oct 18 2021 05:42 PM

Pres. Corazon C. Aquino General Hospital in Baseco

MANILA — A new 50-bed hospital in Baseco, Manila City is named after the late former President Corazon Aquino to immortalize her contribution to the lives of local residents, city mayor Francisco "Isko Moreno" Domagoso said Monday.

“This used to be President Corazon Aquino Health Center,” Domagoso said in a press conference when asked why the new 3-storey medical facility was named after the EDSA People Power I heroine.

“With due respect and reference to (former) Mayor (Alfredo) Lim and President Corazon Aquino, gusto ko naman kahit papaano may ginawa sila dito, gusto ko maalala pa rin ng tao (I want people to remember that somehow, they did something here),” he said.

Aquino, the widow of slain Sen. Benigno "Ninoy" Aquino Jr., was a central figure in the downfall of the late dictator Ferdinand Marcos —- a narrative which Domagoso has been setting aside in his 2022 presidential campaign.

Lim, one of Domagoso’s ally-turned-rival in the capital city, was one of police officials who refused to disperse the crowd on EDSA during the 1986 bloodless revolt that installed Aquino into power.

Aquino named Lim as head of the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) in the 1990s after he helped thwart several coup d’etat against her administration.

In 1992, Lim won his first term as Manila mayor and earned the monicker “Dirty Harry” for his crackdown on crime and illegal drugs in the city.

While he was mayor, Lim paid homage to Aquino by naming one of Baseco’s main roads and a high school after her. The port area’s elementary school was also named after her husband, whose assassination in August 1983 triggered the campaign to oust the Marcoses.

Aquino passed away in 2009, while Lim succumbed to COVID-19 last year.

“Ano ba naman yung paglingon namin sa nakaraan and patuloy namin silang - in our own little way - immortalize,” Domagoso said.

(There’s nothing wrong if we look back at history and, in our own little way, continue to immortalize them.)

“Ayokong kada magbabago ang administrasyon, komo kalaban namin, buburahin na namin yung kanilang nakaraan,” he said.

(I am not in favor of the idea that with every new administration, you have to erase what they have accomplished in the past just because they are you political rivals.)

“Paghihigante yun e (That’s seeking revenge). We always want to move forward,” he added.

Ahead of the May 2022 national elections, Domagoso had said he is distancing himself from the feud of the “political elites.”

Earlier this month, he drew flak from supporters of Vice President Leni Robredo after she said that their unity talks for the upcoming polls bogged down due to their different stances over issues linked to the Marcos dictatorship.

Supporters of Robredo also slammed Domagoso for criticizing the vice president’s decision to seek the country's highest post as an independent candidate even though she is the incumbent chairperson of the Liberal Party.

The son of the late dictator, former Sen. Ferdinand "Bongbong" Marcos, Jr., had also filed his candidacy for president next year.

“Wala akong hang ups,” Domagoso said.

“I’m not after that (political feuds). What I am after is the service. What matters is may bagong ospital sa Baseco (there is a new hospital in Baseco).”

BASECO’S OWN HOSPITAL

The Pres. Corazon C. Aquino General Hospital in Baseco, which will be completed in 8 months, is worth P110 million.

“Bunga lamang yan ng pagpipiga ng bimpo. Ito po yung mga perang utay-utay,” Domagoso said.

(That’s the product of squeezing the towel. We got this money from the city government’s savings from different projects.)

“Pinagsama-sama namin at nakabuo kami ng sapat na salapi upang makapagtatag ng ganitong gusali,” he said.

(We pooled those funds and we managed to come up with money to fund the construction of this establishment.)

The 2,000-square meter facility is the 7th city-run hospital in the capital and will house radiology, surgery, internal medicine, and laboratory departments, the mayor said.

“Alam ko ang katayuan ng isang squatter community,” said Domagoso, who was born and raised in Tondo.

(I know how it feels to live in a squatter community.)

“Gusto ko may sarili kayong ospital na dedicated lang sa community ng Baseco,” he said, noting that several pregnant women and victims of stabbing incidents in the slum area usually do not make it to other hospitals on time.

(I want you to have your own hospital, dedicated only to the Baseco community.)

He said projects in the capital city will be replicated nationwide if elected as president next year.

“Kapag ako pinagbigyan ng tao, ipaparamdam ko sa inyo na may gobyerno ang Pilipinas para sa mga taong wala.”

(If the public will allow it, I will make you feel that the Philippines has a government for people who have nothing in life.)

Aside from Domagoso, Robredo and Marcos, 94 other individuals have filed their candidacies for president next year, including Senators Panfilo "Ping" Lacson, Manny Pacquiao and Ronald "Bato" Dela Rosa, former Defense Secretary Norberto Gonzales, labor leader Leody de Guzman, and former Presidential Spokesman Ernesto Abella.

The list will be trimmed in the coming months by the Commission on Elections to remove nuisance aspirants.

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