Gone too soon: Friends, supporters, allies say goodbye to Lawyer Amay Abella online
CEBU CITY, Philippines — Her desire to give a voice to the youth and to women made Lawyer Marie Velle “Amay” Abella throw her hat into Cebu City’s messy political battleground in 2019.
In an interview with CDN Digital prior to the elections, where she ran as councilor of Cebu City’s South District, the petite political neophyte said one of the driving forces in her bid for public office is to give voice to women.
“I want women to have a voice. I want women to be heard,” she said.
Abella garnered 110, 131 votes, losing the 8th and last spot in the council to Councilor Phillip Zafra.
Despite successfully winning the petition to disqualify a certain Sherwin Abella as a nuisance candidate and garnering additional votes from the candidate who shares her name, Abella still failed to snag a council seat.
Still, she became a household name for the supporters of the Bando Osmeña Pundok Kauswagan (BO-PK), which is why her sudden death was mourned by many.
South District Representative Rodrigo “Bebot” Abellanosa confirmed on his Facebook page that Abella died due to illness on Tuesday morning, May 26, 2020.
“Atty Amay so sadly passed away this morning. Initial unofficial info says she went through multiple organ failure after gall stones caused pancreatitis and affected her kidneys,” said the congressman.
The news spread quickly triggering a flood of condolences and prayers from friends, supporters, allies, and even political opponents online.
A close friend and political ally, Inayawan Barangay Captain Kirk Bryan Repollo shared on his Facebook account his long-standing friendship with Abella.
“We have known each other since college years and we became more close with each other in the past few years. I just can’t explain my feelings right now, because I am still in complete disbelief of what happened to you. But wherever you are, I know you are at the right place for you have been one of God’s little good girl here on earth,” said Repollo.
Members of the student organization Abella actively nurtured for years also expressed their regrets of the untimely passing of the lawyer.
“SACRED mourns the passing of the former Cebu City Hall Human Resource and Development Office (HRDO) Head and SACRED alumna, Atty. Mari Velle ‘Amay’ Abella. May your genuine service to the people sail on! Rest in Love, Atty. Amay. From all of us here in SACRED, our deepest sympathies to the Abella Family,” said student organization SACRED from Abella’s alma mater, University of San Jose Recoletos.
Even political opponents praised Abella’s character and her passion to serve.
Cebu City Legal Officer Rey Gealon, who is associated with the Barug-PDP Laban party, expressed sadness over Abella’s death.
“Thank you for the friendship beyond politics, May. You’ll forever be remembered,” said Gealon.
Before her death, Abella was the former head of the Cebu City Hall Human Resource and Development Office (HRDO) under the administration of former mayor, Tomas Osmeña.
She returned to private practice after losing the city council race in 2019.
The Abella family has not released an official statement on her death yet, but her remains are reportedly at a funeral home at Imus Road in Cebu City. /rcg
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