GENERAL SANTOS CITY (MindaNews/04 October) — President Benigno Aquino III personally said goodbye to a long-time close-in security aide from Sto. Nino town in South Cotabato who succumbed to cancer a week ago, condoled with his family and joined them in bringing him to his final resting place.
The President paid his respects to his close-in aide, Police Officer 3 (PO3) Ryan “Bong” Fuyonan and joined his family at the public cemetery in nearby Norala town, for the burial rites.
Aquino, who arrived on board a helicopter, was accompanied by Defense Secretary Voltaire Gazmin, Local Governments Secretary Mel Senen Sarmiento and Mindanao Development Authority (MinDA) chair Luwalhati Antonino.
He flew to General Santos City on Saturday, stayed overnight to pay his last respects, and attend the scheduled burial of PO3 Fuyonan on Sunday morning.
The 43-year-old Fuyonan, described as one of the President’s most dependable and efficient close-in bodyguards, died last Sept. 26, nearly five months after he was diagnosed with liver cancer last April.
He left behind his wife and a seven-year-old son.
Fuyonan started serving as the President’s security aide during his tenure at the House of Representatives and was considered close to him.
The President personally gave credit to PO3 Fuyonan’s services in his State of the Nationa address last July.
Chief Supt. Lester Camba, Region 12 police director, earlier placed the entire region under full alert in connection with the President’s visit and attendance at PO3 Fuyonan’s burial.
On Thursday noon, a bomb explosion inside a passenger bus in Polomolok town in South Cotabato injured 18 persons, including week-old baby.
Camba said they were eyeing extortion as the motive behind the bombing as he confirmed Friday that the management of Yellow Bus Line Inc. based in Koronadal City received a call from a person who claimed to be a member of the Al-Khobar gang several minutes before the blast.
The Philippine Information Agency in Region 12 confirmed last Friday the President’s attendance at Fuyonan’s funeral but noted that it would be a private affair and no engagements with media and local politicians were scheduled. (MindaNews)