FAREWELL, BOY NOGIEDavao City grieves over passing away of former Speaker Prospero Nograles

Davao City grieved over the loss of one of its favorite sons former House Speaker Prospero “Boy” Nograles who passed away on Saturday at the age of 71.

The death of the five-termer Congressman, known in political circles as “Boy Nogie” was confirmed by his son Cabinet Secretary Karlo Nograles. 
“Our family would like to express our deepest gratitude to all of you for being a part of Papa Boy Nogie’s life and journey,” said the younger Nograles in a statement. He said his father “passed away peacefully, surrounded by his family.” 
Secretary Nograles, in a message to friends, said that his father’s wake will be in Chapel 1 at Heritage Park, Fort Bonifacio, BGC Taguig. Viewing starts Sunday May 5 up to May 6. He said the family will fly the remains to davao on Tuesday, May 7.

“He is finally at peace,” the younger Nograles said. He described his father as “a driven public servant who loved his family and faithfully served his constituents.” 

Sympathies from netizens poured over the social media shortly after news of the passing of the first ever elected House Speaker from Mindanao came out.

Former Vice Mayor Paolo Duterte, who is seeking for the representation of the district the late Nograles represented in Congress for five terms, were among the first to express their sympathies. “My condolences to the family of former House Speaker Prospero Nograles, the first Mindanaoan Speaker,” the younger Duterte posted on his Facebook account. “I and my family, including all of the Dabawenyos, join you in your grief and we could only comfort you in this time of deep sorrow. Rest in peace Manong Boy.”

The late Nograles was born in Davao City, and finished his primary and secondary education at the Ateneo de Davao University. He earned his his Bachelor of Arts Degree major in Political Science in 1967 at the Ateneo de Manila University, and his Bachelor of Laws degree from the Ateneo de Manila Law School in 1971. 

He was a bar topnotcher placing no. 2 in the 1971 Bar examinations. As a lawyer, he represented victims of human rights violations during the regime of the late strongman Ferdinand Marcos, and then supported the campaign of the late President Corazon Aquino in the 1986 snap elections. After Aquino assumed the presidency, Nograles sought a seat in the House of Representatives, representing the 1st district of Davao City. He was catapulted to the House seat in 1989 after getting a favorable decision from the House Electoral Tribunal in a protest over rival Jesus Dureza, who was was initially proclaimed as winner.

He gave up his House seat in 1992 to make an unsuccessful challenge to the re-election of Davao City Mayor Rodrigo Duterte, but regained the seat in the 1995 election. In 1998, Nograles again gave up his House seat to make another unsuccessful bid for election as Davao City mayor against Duterte-backed Benjamin de Guzman and lost in his bid. He again won election to the House in 2001. In the 2004 and 2007 elections, Nograles ran unopposed for two consecutive terms.

In 2010, he lost to then Vice-Mayor Sara Duterte in another failed Mayoralty bid.

In his stay in Congress, Nograles was able to author 17 House bills and co-authored 85. He chaired the Special Committee on Law Enforcement and its subcommittee on Gambling, Committee on Housing and Urban Development, and the Committee on Rules. He was the Majority Floor Leader during the 13th Congress of the Philippines. Before his election as Speaker, he was the head of the House contingent to the Commission on Appointments.

In early 2008, several members of Congress elected Nograles as the new Speaker after expressing their dissatisfaction over the leadership of then Speaker Jose de Venecia, who nominated Nograles to be his replacement.