By LITO RULONA
and NITZ ARANCON
FORMER councilor Jose Pepe Abbu died while battling a liver disease in a hospital here early morning yesterday. He was 70.
The ex-patrolman who rose to become a member of the city council succumbed while under intensive care at the Polymedic Plaza at around 3:51 am.
According to his daughter Floramae, the ex-councilor had liver cirrhosis while his son Jose Pepe Jr. said his father was also diabetic.
Abbu’s widow, a judge, said she is still waiting for the death certificate and could not say the official cause of death at presstime.
Called as a “silent performer” by close friends, Abbu rose to political prominence in the city when he became closely associated with the then mayor Aquilino Pimentel Jr. who fought the Marcos dictatorship.
He started his political career in 1974 when he was elected as a barangay councilor in Puntod.
Abbu served in the post-Edsa city council during the mayorship of lawyer Pablo Magtajas.
He would serve three full office terms as a councilor during the Magtajas administration.
As councilor, he chaired on separate occasions the city council’s committees on police, fire and public safety; subdivision and landed estate; engineering, infrastructure, labor, and appropriation.
Abbu ran for a new mandate during the administration of Vicente Emano, and won a seat again in the city’s legislature in 2010.
After serving in city hall for 18 years, he ran for a city council seat last year under the ticket of ex-mayor Emano, and lost.
Abbu was born on Sept. 23, 1946. His widow is Judge Florencia Sealana-Abbu of the 17th branch of the Regional Trial Court (RTC) here.
The former councilor is survived by his children Floramae Abbu, Joepep Abbu, lawyer Rufeliz Ann Abbu, and Jose Pepe Abbu Jr.; and grandchildren Athena Sophia Abbu and Jose Martin Abbu.
Abbu’s daughter Floramae said his father had been battling the disease since late 2016.
“Wala na gyud makaagwanta akong papa. Mipahulay na gyud siya,” she said.
Abbu’s body lies in state at the Cosmopolitian Funeral Homes on Capistrano Street. Interment is scheduled in the afternoon of April 25.