Senate lauds Pimentel

SENATE President Vicente Sotto III yesterday led the Senate in honoring the life and accomplishments of the late Senate President Aquilino ‘Nene’ Q. Pimentel, the father of the Local Government Code of 1991 and the Organic Act of the Autonomous Region of Muslim Mindanao.

Pimentel succumbed to pneumonia and lymphoma complications in the early morning of October 20 at the age of 85.

Pimentel’s remains were brought to the Senate yesterday morning for the traditional necrological rites given in honor of former members of the upper chamber who have passed on. It will be flown to Cagayan de Oro City in the afternoon and brought back to Manila on Friday.

Sotto presented the family of the late Senate President a Resolution expressing the Senate’s “profound sympathy and sincere condolences” which was authored by all of the members of the 18th Congress of the Senate.

Senate Resolution No. 168 was received by his son and namesake, Sen. Aquilino ‘Koko’ Pimentel III on behalf of his mother, Lourdes or ‘Nanay Bing’, and sisters human rights Commissioner Gwendolyn Pimentel-Gana, Ma. Petrina, Teresa and Lorraine, and brother Aquilino IV.

SRN 168 emphasized the political achievements of the late statesman in the executive and legislative branches of the government.

“The Honorable Aquilino ‘Nene’ Quilinging Pimentel Jr. (was) a distinguished public servant, a fearless human rights lawyer, parliamentarian, and legislator, a staunch defender of democracy, a family-oriented and religious man, and the Father of the Local Government Code,” the Resolution read.

It noted the late Pimentel’s sterling public service “in his almost five decades of illustrious and unblemished career as a public servant,” having served the government in various capacities.

The late senator first served as a Delegate to the 1971 Constitutional Convention representing Misamis Oriental; mayor of Cagayan de Oro City (1980 to 1984); Batasang Pambansa Assemblyman (1984 to 1986); and Secretary of the Ministry of Local Government in concurrent capacity as Presidential Adviser and Chief Negotiator with the Muslim rebels (1986 to 1987).

He became a distinguished member of the Senate in 1987 and crafted significant laws, including the Organic Act of the Local Government Code, until 1992. He was elected to a new six-year term for the 1998 to 2004 Congress and served his third and last term from 2004 to 2010. His last government post was as member of the Consultative Commission which President Duterte created in 2018 to review the 1987 Constitution.

During his tenure as senator, the late Pimentel was appointed to two crucial positions: the Senate President from November 13, 2000 to June 30, 2001; and as Senate Minority Leader from 2004 to 2010 and July 23, 2001 to June 3, 2002.