Former Philippine senator Miriam Defensor Santiago, who ran in the country’s presidential election in May, died Thursday morning after battling lung cancer. She was 71.
“She died this morning in her sleep, she was unconscious when she passed away,” her husband, Narciso “Jun” Santiago, told the Philippine Daily Inquirer.
He said Santiago passed away at St. Luke’s Medical Center in Taguig City, where she had been taken on and off for complications of her ailment, according to the newspaper.
In 2014 she revealed that she was suffering from stage four lung cancer.
Born in Iloilo City on June 15, 1945, Santiago had served in all branches of the government: executive, judicial and legislative.
Known for her quick wit and fearless tongue, she was a staunch nationalist and anti-corruption fighter.
In 2012, she became the first Filipino to be elected judge of the International Criminal Court, but she had to turn down the post because of what she had then called chronic fatigue syndrome.
She sought the presidency in 1992, 1998, and also this year. Supporters described her as “the best president we never had”.
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