Palace: Robredo family accepts state funeral-A A +A
Wednesday, August 22, 2012
MANILA -- The family of the late Local Government Secretary Jesse Robredo has accepted the offer of a state funeral for the former Naga City mayor, Malacanang said Wednesday.
"The President has offered and the Robredo family has accepted a state funeral for the late secretary of the Interior and Local Government," presidential spokesperson Edwin Lacierda said.
Lacierda said a state funeral entails that all expenses will be paid by the government. Full military honors will also be rendered to Robredo, who died in a plane crash last August 18.
Communications Undersecretary Manuel Quezon III, whose office is in charge of preparations for the funeral arrangements, announced the details on what will happen on Friday when the remains of Robredo will be brought to Malacanang.
Quezon said the Philippine National Police (PNP) will render departure honors in Naga City and escort the remains from the Archbishop's Palace to the Naga Airport. Departure honors will be then be given by the PNP prior to departure from Pili Airport en route to Villamor Airbase in Metro Manila.
At Villamor Airbase, arrival honors will be rendered by the Armed Forces of the Philippines.
The Presidential Security Group will escort Robredo's casket from the airbase to Malacañang. The same group will render arrival honors, to include a gun salute, in Malacañang.
Robredo's remains will lie in state in Malacañang Palace on Friday until Sunday morning.
Quezon said the committee has yet to decide where exactly in Malacanang the wake will be held, but, in her Facebook account, Robredo's eldest daughter Jessica Marie "Aika" said the wake will be at the Palace's Kalayaan Hall.
The committee still has to decide if the wake would be open to the public. But Quezon assured there will be full coverage of every process and arrangement related to Robredo's funeral.
The same honors will be rendered to Robredo when his remains will be transferred back from Manila to Naga.
Quezon said a state funeral is the highest possible kind of a funeral that a government can give to an individual.
Under the law, entitled to a state funeral are the President, Vice President, Speaker of the House, Senate President, national artists, and medal of valor winners.
The President, however, as head of state and commander-in-chief, has a prerogative to grant a state funeral to those who are considered worthy, Quezon said.
He added that, traditionally, only wakes of Presidents are held in the Palace, particularly in Rizal Hall, but there have been exceptions made recently for members of the President's official family.
He cited the case of former press secretary Cerge Remonde, whose wake was held at the Malacanang's Heroes Hall during the term of former President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo.
In the case of Robredo, Quezon said there would only be minor differences in honors to be rendered particularly the number of gun salute.
Nevertheless, he said the honors to be given to Robredo are the following: escort battalion; funeral cortege with the participation of the uniformed services; arrival honors at the place of interment; gun salute; three volley salute; playing of taps; and handing of the national flag that has covered the coffin to the widow.
Quezon added that there will be books of condolences in Philippine consulates and embassies.
As of Wednesday, the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) has opened a book of condolence for the members of the diplomatic corps in Manila. The DFA has likewise instructed all Philippine consulates and embassies overseas to do the same, said Quezon.
He said all government offices are required to fly their flags at half-mast in honor of Robredo.
President Benigno Aquino III earlier declared August 21 until the day of interment of Robredo as national days of mourning.
The funeral committee is expected to issue more updates on Robredo’s funeral and burial arrangements. (Jill Beltran/Sunnex)