HINIGARAN, Neg. Occ. – They may be grieving, but the love and support of the people of the fifth district of Negros Occidental for the late Rep. Ignacio “Iggy” Arroyo lessened it, former First Gentleman Mike Arroyo said yesterday.
“We are overwhelmed and very happy that the people here love him very much because he had so many projects in the fifth district,” said Arroyo, citing the torch parade that greeted them when the remains of his younger brother, Iggy, arrived in Hinigaran Monday night.
“He (Iggy) loved the people here, and they loved him very much, and I thank all the people here in the fifth district,” he added on the last night of the wake of his brother in Negros.
The Sangguniang Panlalawigan of Negros Occidental, headed by Vice Genaro Alvarez, yesterday passed a resolution extending their condolences to the Arroyo family, and honoring Iggy for his contribution to the development of the 5th district of the province.
The resolution was presented to Mike Arroyo and his sister Ma. Lourdes Arroyo Lesaca by Gov. Alfredo Marañon Jr., Vice Governor Genaro Alvarez Jr. and the Negros Occidental board members here late yesterday afternoon.
“We are very happy, we are humbled and we thank the provincial board for giving a resolution honoring my brother, it is really very touching. We are very, very happy that the people in Negros love him very much,” Arroyo told the provincial officials, in the presence of his sister and Rep. Mercedes Alvarez (Neg. Occ., 6th District).
Even though his brother is already gone, Arroyo said they will continue to help the 5th district. That is why, he added, “We are asking Ma. Lourdes to continue what Iggy had started.
“We will miss him (Iggy) very much. He was such a dear brother and a very kind person. We are always together in everything. I have so many fond memories with him”, he added.
Marañon described Iggy as a “good man” , who had no enemies, as far as he is concerned.
“He was so loved in his district,” he added, citing the thousands of people who welcomed him on Monday and who visited his remains at the St. Mary Magdalene Church.
La Castellana Mayor Alberto Nicor also described Iggy as ”a man of few words, but also a man of action”.
“He died an honorable man and he died as an adorable gentleman”, Nicor said, adding that “the people of La Castellana can attest to his generosity.”
Msgr. Victorino Rivas, who had officiated at the wedding of Iggy and Aleli Morales-Arroyo, also described the late congressman as a “good man who wanted to be a good leader”.
Arroyo said he and his sister, Ma. Lourdes, also visited their farm in Isabela, and extended help for the renovation of the church in the place.
Ma. Lourdes also thanked the people of Negros for the support and love they had extended to their brother, Iggy. “It lessens our sadness and grieving” she added.
The congressman’s remains will be flown to Manila early this morning for a wake at his ancestral home, and his funeral at the Manila North Cemetery tomorrow morning.*GPB