Lorenzo Sumulong

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Lorenzo Sumulong
Senator of the Philippines
In office
December 30, 1949 – December 30, 1967
In office
December 30, 1969 – September 23, 1972[1]
10th Senate President pro tempore of the Philippines
In office
1966 – December 30, 1969
President Ferdinand Marcos
Preceded by Fernando Lopez
Succeeded by Jose Roy
Member of the House of Representatives of the Philippines from Rizal's 2nd District
In office
May 25, 1946 – December 30, 1949
Preceded by Emilio de la Paz
Succeeded by Emilio de la Paz
Personal details
Born (1905-09-05)September 5, 1905
Antipolo, Rizal, Philippines
Died October 21, 1997(1997-10-21) (aged 92)
Political party Liberal Party, Nacionalista Party
Profession Lawyer

Lorenzo Sumulong (September 5, 1905 – October 21, 1997) was a Filipino politician who served in the Philippine Senate for four decades, and as a delegate of his country to the United Nations. He was noted for having engaged in a debate with Nikita Khrushchev at the United Nations General Assembly that allegedly provoked the Soviet Union Premier to bang his shoe on a desk.

Early life and education[edit]

Sumulong was born in Antipolo, Rizal.[2] He finished law at the University of the Philippines College of Law and went on to top the 1929 bar examinations.[2] In 1932, he obtained a Masters of Law degree from Harvard Law School[2]

Political career[edit]

Sumulong began his political career as a municipal councilor in Antipolo.[2] In the 1946 general elections, Sumulong won a seat in the House of Representatives, representing the 2nd District of Rizal. In 1949, Sumulong was elected to the Philippine Senate. He won re-election to the Senate in 1955 and in 1961. He did not seek re-election in 1967, but would return to the Senate in the 1969 elections. In all, Sumulong remained in Congress for 24 years, initially under the Liberal Party, but later under the Nacionalista Party. He served through the 1st Congress until the 7th Congress.

During his 21-year stint as senator, Sumulong became the chairman of the Senate Committee on Public Accountability (also known as the Blue Ribbon Committee). Through that high-profile position, he investigated noted national controversies such as the Tambobong-Buenavista Estate deal and the Harry Stonehill scandals.[2]

Faceoff with Khrushchev[edit]

Sumulong also served as chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations committee, and in that capacity, he led a Philippine delegation to the 902nd Plenary Meeting of the United Nations General Assembly in 1960. During that meeting, Sumulong took the floor and delivered the following remarks challenging the Soviet Union to allow the people of Eastern Europe the free exercise of their civil and political rights.

Khrushchev was incensed by Sumulong's remarks. He denounced the Filipino senator as "a jerk, a stooge and a lackey of imperialism".[4] Khrushchev then took out his shoe, waved it at Sumulong, then banged the shoe on the desk in front of him.[5] The following day, Khrushchev acknowledged that he had offended Sumulong, though he asserted that he in turn was likewise offended by the delegate from the Philippines.[6]

Later life[edit]

Sumulong's service in Congress ended in 1972, with the abolition of the Philippine Senate upon the declaration of martial law by President Ferdinand Marcos. In 1987, President Corazon Aquino named Sumulong to the Constitutional Commission that drafted the 1987 Philippine Constitution. He died on October 21, 1997 at the age of 92.

Lorenzo is the father of Victor Sumulong, who served as congressman and mayor of Antipolo City during the Estrada and Arroyo administrations. Lorenzo is also the grandfather of Miguel Sumulong and Monica Sumulong.

Personal life[edit]

He was married to Estrella Rodriguez with 6 children.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Term cut short due to the declaration of Martial Law by President Ferdinand Marcos.
  2. ^ a b c d e "Senators Profile: Lorenzo Sumulong". Former Senators. Senate of the Philippines. Retrieved 2009-01-07. 
  3. ^ Official Records, 15th Session of the UN General Assembly
  4. ^ Nina Khruscheva. "The Case of Khrushchev's Shoe". New Statesman. 
  5. ^ Eric Pace (1988-12-05). "Recalling Year of Banging Shoe". The New York Times. Retrieved 2009-01-07. 
  6. ^ "The Thunder Departs". Time Magazine. 1960-10-24. Retrieved 2009-01-06. 
House of Representatives of the Philippines
Preceded by
Emilio de la Paz
Representative, 2nd District of Rizal
1946 – 1949
Succeeded by
Emilio de la Paz