Remembering Cory: PH's 'moral compass'

It has been three years since former President Corazon Aquino passed on but her legacy lives on for most of her loved ones and supporters.

Presidential Spokesperson Edwin Lacierda said the former President was "the nation’s moral compass—a constant presence that personified not only the greatness Filipinos could achieve but also the people’s staunch determination to defend and nurture our democratic institutions and the principles she and millions of Filipinos helped restore and rebuild."

"Corazon C. Aquino, whom most of our countrymen called 'Tita Cory,' was a gift bestowed upon a grateful nation who we will never forget," he said.

PH's first ever woman president and democracy icon passed away on August 1, 2009 after a long bout with colon cancer. Her death moved millions of Filipinos and signified the rebirth of the yellow movement, which eventually catapulted her only son, Noynoy, to power.

President Benigno "Noynoy" Aquino III and his sisters will unveil a Cory monument and a mini photo exhibit at Our Lady of Edsa Shrine in Mandaluyung City on Wednesday evening after a mass that will be open to the public.

Earlier in the day, the President and his sisters visited the former president at Heritage Memorial Park.

Vice President Jejomar Binay, who was the first local official that then President Aquino appointed into office, had this to say about her: "Para sa akin, lagi kong babalikan ang kaniyang mabuting halimbawa sa mga naglilingkod sa bayan, ang kagandahan ng kanyang loob, at taimitim na paniniwala sa Panginoon."

"Panatilihin nating buhay ang alaala ni Pangulong Cory," Binay said in a press statement.

Cory's legacy

Tony Meloto, social entrepreneur and founder of Gawad Kalinga, said on Twitter that the former president "profoundly inspired and influenced me to make GK the expression of my love for God and country.”

"I'm forever grateful," Meloto said.

GK, which has been building houses and empowering the poor since 1996, has adopted the goal of ending poverty for five million poor families by 2024. It aims to do this by reaching out to "communities and building them up so that in the future they will be able to care for others."

Leah Navarro, co-convenor of civil society network Black and White Movement, meanwhile said on her Twitter account that Aquino's "legacy of selflessness thrives via the NCAF (Ninoy and Cory Aquino Foundation) and PinoyME."

According to its website, NCAF conducts youth seminars "that seek to reintroduce spirituality as a major foundation for Filipino leadership."

"Harnessing their innate values systems, the participants take part in a process of self-reflection which, it is hoped, would ultimately lead to self-transformation and self-commitment for others and country," NCAF said of its NCA Leadership Journey.

PinoyME Foundation, meanwhile, helps microfinance institutions and microentrepreneurs find funding for street vendors, tricycle drivers, and other small businesses that cannot borrow from regular banks. PinoyME is meant as an alternative to loan sharks who lend money but collect high interest on the loans.

Akbayan chairperson Risa Hontiveros also marked the anniversary of Aquino's death, saying on Twitter that: "We remember, we give thanks, we carry on the task of People Power, the construction of daang matuwid."

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