MANILA, Philippines—The Philippines on Tuesday mourned the death of Margaret Thatcher.
“We join the people of the United Kingdom as they mark the passing of Baroness Margaret Thatcher, who left an indelible imprint on British politics and society during her more than a decade as prime minister,” President Aquino’s spokesman Edwin Lacierda said in a statement.
“As the first, and to date, only female premier of the UK, she proved a formidable leader on the world stage.”
Former Sen. Richard Gordon said the Philippines could have had its own version of the “Iron Lady.”
“Nobody comes close, however, because here we destroy our icons. We don’t give them time to fly,” he said.
Gordon’s fond remembrance
Gordon, a senatorial candidate in next month’s elections, fondly remembered Thatcher’s visit in 1996, saying she walked and talked with the people in Subic, and was inspired by its volunteers. She later wrote him a long, handwritten letter thanking him for arranging the visit. At that time, he chaired the Subic Bay Metropolitan Authority.
“You, the people and the children gave me a lovely welcome which I greatly appreciated. Your vigorous approach in transforming the whole area into an enterprise zone and a real community was most impressive,” he quoted Thatcher’s letter as saying.
Sen. Miriam Defensor-Santiago remembered Thatcher sought to comfort her after the senator lost in the presidential election in 1992.
“I met her here in the Philippines,” Santiago said. “She was touring Asia. She showed me extraordinary sympathy and compassion,” Santiago told reporters after addressing graduates of Our Lady of Fatima University on Tuesday.—With reports from TJ Burgonio, Leila B. Salaverria and Cathy C. Yamsuan
Originally posted: 5:25 pm | Tuesday, April 9th, 2013