The Presidential Commission on Good Government (PCGG) deeply mourns the loss of one of its greatest leaders, Senator Jovito R. Salonga, the founding Chairman of the Commission who contributed immensely not only to the recovery of the Marcos ill-gotten wealth, but also to the pursuit of justice and a better Philippines for every Filipino.

For the younger generation who may be unaware, Senator Salonga was a giant man in the very challenging era of our history. During his lifetime, Senator Salonga is best remembered fighting for the democracy against the evils of Martial Law. He also fought to recover the ill-gotten wealth of the Marcoses and became instrumental in the restoration of our freedom and of our civil and political rights which we enjoy today.

His trailblazing works in the Commission paved the way for the successful recovery of the Marcos ill-gotten assets. He leaves behind a legacy of unsullied reputation, unquestionable legal brilliance and a lifetime of patriotic works, which sadly our country is in dearth need of people like him.

It was but fitting that PCGG’s first Chairman received a lifetime award during the Commission’s 30th anniversary commemoration held last February. His invaluable contributions, as a lawmaker and freedom fighter, have earned him our eternal gratitude and respect.

He was prepared and willing to sacrifice himself for the name of freedom and good governance. He lived a life of relevance, by doing whatever he can with intelligence, fairness and understanding. Indeed, Senator Salonga was one of the greatest statesmen the country has ever produced.

His death is a great loss but his life remains a great inspiration. May the life he led become an inspiration to those who are too young to remember the works he had done for our country.

We are one with his bereaved family in this difficult time and one with the nation in mourning the loss of an extraordinary public servant, patriot and a true Filipino.