GOVERNMENT officials have extended condolences on the passing of former President Fidel V. Ramos.

President Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. said Ramos’ legacy “will always be cherished and will be forever enshrined in the hearts of our grateful nation.”

“I extend my deepest condolences to the family of former President Fidel Valdez Ramos who passed away today having lived a full life as a military officer and public servant,” Marcos said in a Facebook post on Sunday, July 31, 2022.

“Our family shares the Filipino people’s grief on this sad day. We did not only lose a good leader but also a member of the family,” he added.

Ramos, 94, died on July 31 due to complications brought about by coronavirus disease (Covid-19).

He served as the country’s top government official from 1992 to 1998. Due to his efforts, the country regained the confidence of the investors following the martial law under the regime of Ferdinand Marcos Sr.

For her part, Vice President Sara Duterte expressed grief as she credited Ramos for making “peace possible in Mindanao” after signing a peace agreement with the Moro National Liberation Front that ended the 24-year Moro armed revolution headed by Nur Misuari.

“FVR aggressively championed Filipino competitiveness in the global arena and through his socio-economic agenda called ‘Philippines 2000,’ liberalized the country’s economy — resulting in the significant improvements in the average income of Filipino workers,” said Duterte.

“He was a real patriot — one who encouraged men and women in uniform to value their integrity as public servants,” she added.

Duterte said she is hoping that Filipinos will find inspiration from Ramos’ life and the immensity of the legacy “that he built out of his love of country and fellow Filipinos.”

Lawmakers also expressed grief over the passing of Ramos.

Senate President Juan Miguel Zubiri filed a resolution expressing the Senate’s condolences on Ramos' death.

Zubiri described Ramos as a “gallant, dutiful and decorated soldier.”

Ramos, a former soldier, fought during the Korean War in 1952.

He also served as the chief of the Philippine Constabulary and vice-chief of staff of the Armed Forces of the Philippine under Marcos government.

In 1986, he joined hundreds of thousands of protesters gathering on Edsa aiming to unseat Marcos.

He was appointed as the AFP chief-of-staff by President Cory Aquino.

Zubiri hailed Ramos for navigating the country’s economy during the 1997 East Asia Financial Crisis, steering the Philippines’ recovery efforts and turning the Sick Man of Asia into Asia’s Next Tiger Economy.

"Even after his retirement from politics, he continued to mobilize the citizenry and pushed for best practices in unity, solidarity and teamwork in nation building, and continued to interact with world leaders in various fora and platforms," he said.

"The passing away of a brilliant military man, politician, and statesman is a great loss to the nation," he added.

Senator Grace Poe described Ramos as a “steadfast leader and democracy icon.”

Other lawmakers issued their respective statements extending condolences to the bereaved family.

The Department of Foreign Affairs, Department of Education and Supreme Court also expressed mourning over Ramos’ passing. (SunStar Philippines)