News of Serge passing, saddens many

PHILIPPINE NEWS SERVICE — THE passing away of Press Secretary Cerge Remonde drew expressions of grief and loss from friends, colleagues and many others.

Speaker Prospero Nograles led the members of House of Representatives in praying for Remonde.

Nograles considered Remonde an old personal friend for many years.

He commended Remonde for his courage and wit as he withstood all the pressures and stood his ground even amid the most controversial issues that he confronted as Palace spokesman.

“He was the administration’s first line of defense and did his utmost best through dedication, hard work and service to the news and the media profession. He died as a true media man to his last dying breath,” Nograles said.

The lawmakers were in deep shock and sadness when they heard the news that Remonde was dead.

“In behalf of all the members and secretariat of the House of Representatives, we extend our deepest sympathy to his grieving family and loved ones,” Nograles said.

Parañaque Rep. Roilo Golez said that he and Remonde remained very good friends even after he joined the opposition.

“Cerge Remonde was a very good friend. He helped me a lot when I was in the cabinet as National Security Adviser,” Golez said.

“During the National Security Council meeting last week, we were seated across each other at the table and we exchanged political jokes. I will miss him. The President lost an ally who gave her unconditional loyalty,” Golez said.

In a statement, National Press Club president Benny Antiporda said the NPC “mourns with a heavy heart the sudden and untimely passing of Press Secretary Cerge Remonde.”

Antiporda rued the loss of “a friend who had shown time and time again his commitment and unwavering love for the media profession and (his being) a staunch defender of press freedom.”

Interior and Local Government Secretary Ronaldo Puno said the Palace lost a versatile and hardworking public official.

Puno expressed deep sadness over the sudden demise of his friend whom he described as a multitalented member of President Macapagal-Arroyo’s Cabinet.

“My family and I extend our deepest condolences to the family of Secretary Remonde. I lost both a friend and an esteemed colleague,” Puno said. “We were all shocked by his sudden passing and we will miss him greatly.”

“I grieve over the untimely death of Press Secretary Cerge Remonde,” Sen. Loren Legarda said.

“While he had a most difficult job as spokesman of the administration, he had performed his task with flair, eloquence and dedication, providing the public with a clear and concise articulation of the viewpoints, positions and pronouncements of the administration,” Legarda said in a statement.

Sen. Noynoy Aquino condoled with the Remonde family.

“We extend our sympathies to the family of Cerge Remonde who passed away today. We pray for the repose of his soul and for the Almighty to extend his merciful and consoling hand to those he has left behind,” the presidential aspirant said.

“I would like to extend my sincerest condolences to the family and friends of Press Secretary Cerge Remonde for his passing,” Sen. Manny Villar said in a press statement.