“I join the entire nation in mourning the passing of Senator Juan M. Flavier. While the country has lost a statesman who achieved greatness in dedicating his entire life to public service, I have lost a dear friend,” Drilon said in a statement.
Drilon said what defined Flavier as a public servant is his “humility and simplicity.” Flavier first served as a young rural physician in several barangays in Nueva Ecija, under the Philippine Rural Reconstruction Movement, rather than taking on a more lucrative training and residency program overseas.
“He was a doctor who shunned the lure of a financially rewarding private practice to be a ‘doctor to the barrios’,” Drilon said.
“He continued his selfless ways by joining public service as a Secretary of Health who bravely campaigned for his advocacies, and as a senator who placed the interest of our people above all else,” the Senate leader also said.
“That was JMF or Johnny, who I came to know—a man whose integrity and devotion to duty only a few can match,” added Drilon.
Drilon, who was Senate President at the time Flavier joined the 10th Congress, said he is fortunate to have had an opportunity to work with him.
During his Senate stint, Flavier chaired the Senate Committee on Health and Demography, having been known as a health advocate and public health care servant.
“I am fortunate for having had the opportunity to work with Senator Flavier both in the cabinet and in the Senate. I am personally thankful for his dedication and hard work as my Senate President Pro-Tempore, and his loyalty to the institution,” Drilon said.
“On behalf of the Senate, I extend our condolences to the family of Johnny,” the Senate chief stressed.