Gloria mourns 'loyal soldier' Leandro Mendoza
MANILA - Former President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo on Monday said she is saddened by the death of her former Cabinet member and National Police chief, Leandro Mendoza.
In a statement, the former leader said: "I am profoundly saddened by the loss of my dear friend and trusted colleague, Secretary Leandro Mendoza. Atty. Arroyo and I extend our deepest condolences to Mrs. Soledad Mendoza and her family in their hour of bereavement."
Mendoza served in three different capacities under Arroyo --Philippine National Police chief, Transportation and Communications Secretary, and Executive Secretary.
Arroyo said Mendoza as Philippine National Police chief was instrumental in keeping the peace during the early years of her administration.
She said Mendoza also set records for building roads, bridges, airports, seaports, information networks as secretary of the Department of Transportation and Communications.
"His is a record set in concrete and steel that is unmatched to this day. And as my executive secretary, he oversaw the closing achievements of my admin that were bequeathed to our successors," she said.
"Larry Mendoza was a loyal soldier, a builder, and a leader of men. He will be deeply missed, even as his achievements in brick and stone will long testify to his love of country and his contributions to the advancement of our people."
Mendoza and Arroyo are co-accused in the NBN-ZTE case pending before the Sandiganbayan.
Separately, House Speaker Sonny Belmonte expressed his sympathies to the family.
"I commiserate with the family. He was a steadfast leader and l thought he was on the way to recovery. His passing shocked me. I was just talking to Mrs Mendoza and my dear colleague Congressman Dong Mendoza recently."
Mendoza's son is an incumbent congressman of Batangas.