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Statement of Senate Minority Leader Franklin M. Drilon on the death anniversary of former Senator Ninoy Aquino

"We join the Filipino people in commemorating the death anniversary of the late Senator Benigno "Ninoy" Aquino, Jr., a hero and an icon of democracy."

"Let us not dishonor Ninoy's sacrifice by trivializing human life. If Ninoy were alive today, he would have been the first to speak against the bloodbath in the name of war on drugs."

"If Ninoy were alive today, he would have condemned the death of a teenager, a son, a child, a mother, and a father. Ninoy valued life as much as he valued freedom."

"If he were alive today, Ninoy would have been in the forefront of the fight against police impunity and the government's acquiescence."

"If Ninoy were alive today, he would have rallied every Filipino to protect the democracy and the freedom those who came before us died for."

"Ninoy's death allowed us to enjoy the freedom and the democracy we have today. We honor his death by constant vigilance, not complacency or complicity. I have every faith that the Ninoy in all of us, regardless of party, will prevail in protecting the blessings of independence and democracy under the rule of law and a regime of truth which he died for."

"Having said that, I join the call of the Catholic Church to put an 'end to the waste of life.' I cannot support a war on drugs where the sole benchmark is the number of deaths that we see every night. I join the church in calling for a reorientation of the fight against drugs. Success should not be based on number of deaths but on the number of lives redeemed."

"On the senate investigation, I support an investigation that is impartial. Thirty-four years ago, Marcos formed the Fernando Commission to investigate Ninoy's death but was dissolved after two hearings because of perceived bias. I hope the Senate investigation to investigate Kian's death will not only investigate the events that led to Kian's death but to find the root cause and reexamine why Kian's death and all other killings had to happen in the first place."

Source: Senate of the Philippines

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