Benigno S. Aquino III, a former president of the Philippines and scion of the nation’s most distinguished pro-democracy political household, died in Manila on Thursday. He was 61.
His demise was confirmed in a press release from Manuel Roxas II, a former minister of the inside whose household has lengthy been related to the Aquinos. The reason for his demise was not instantly recognized; native information stories stated that he had been admitted to a hospital.
Mr. Aquino served as president from 2010 to 2016, using a wave of help after the demise of his mom, Corazon Aquino, in 2009. Mrs. Aquino, a former president, and her husband, the slain Senator Benigno S. Aquino Jr., have been leaders of the 1986 Folks Energy Revolution that ended the two-decade dictatorship of President Ferdinand Marcos.
The youthful Mr. Aquino, popularly referred to as Noynoy and PNoy, was celebrated early in his administration for battling corruption, stabilizing the nation’s faltering economic system and pushing by way of a reproductive rights legislation that made contraception extra available to the poor — a transfer that had lengthy been opposed by the Roman Catholic Church, in a devoutly Catholic nation.
He was additionally among the many uncommon leaders in Southeast Asia keen to face as much as China, which has a number of territorial disputes within the area. Mr. Aquino successfully sued Beijing over the 2 international locations’ competing claims within the South China Sea, taking his case to a global tribunal in The Hague. In a landmark ruling in 2016, the tribunal discovered that there was no authorized foundation to help China’s expansive declare to sovereignty over the waters.
“It’s with profound unhappiness that I discovered this morning of the passing of former President Benigno S. Aquino III,” Justice Marvic Leonen, an Aquino appointee to the Supreme Courtroom, stated in a press release. “I knew him to be a sort man, pushed by his ardour to serve the individuals, diligent in his duties and with an avid and consuming curiosity about new information of the world basically.”
However Mr. Aquino’s time period was later marred by accusations of inaction and graft. Within the aftermath of Storm Haiyan in 2013, which killed 6,000 Filipinos, many accused the president of being too sluggish to reply to the disaster. Some Western nations, together with Canada, cited the Aquino administration’s lack of immediacy of their selections to sidestep the federal government and donate cash and help on to nongovernmental organizations as an alternative.
That very same yr, Mr. Aquino, who had made tackling corruption an indicator of his administration, confronted a sequence of high-profile allegations. They included the arrest of a businesswoman suspected of funneling cash supposed for poverty-reduction packages into lawmakers’ financial institution accounts and accusations of law enforcement officials concerned in extrajudicial killings.
But it surely was the deaths of 44 police commandos in a 2015 conflict with Muslim rebels that finally ended his presidency. The botched raid to seize a Muslim rebel within the southern city of Mamasapano was, on the time, the deadliest day for the nation’s police power in trendy historical past.
In 2017, the nation’s anti-graft prosecutor stated Mr. Aquino must be held accountable for the officers’ deaths for permitting a suspended nationwide police chief, accused of corruption, to supervise the operation.
Mr. Aquino was succeeded in 2016 by Rodrigo Duterte, a populist president whose insurance policies have included a bloody conflict on medication and whose authoritarianism has been in comparison with the Marcos regime.
Benigno Simeon Cojuangco Aquino III was born on Feb. 8, 1960, his mother and father’ solely son. He labored within the household’s first enterprise, sugar, earlier than starting a profession of their second enterprise — politics — in 1998.
Within the years between, he joined his mother and father on the entrance strains of the battle to oust Marcos. His father’s assassination in 1983 is extensively seen as a turning level for the revolution’s standard help.
In 1987, throughout his mom’s presidency, Mr. Aquino was shot 5 occasions throughout an tried army coup. He lived with shrapnel in his neck for the remainder of his life.
From 1998 to 2007, he served three phrases within the Home of Representatives, representing his household’s ancestral residence, the northern province of Tarlac. He was halfway by way of his first time period within the Senate when he was elected president in 2010.
He by no means married and had no kids, however is survived by 4 sisters.