Local view for "http://purl.org/linkedpolitics/eu/plenary/2012-05-09-Speech-3-023-000"

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"Today, we are mourning a valued Member of this House, our fellow Member, Miguel de Sacadura Cabral Portas, who died on 24 April at the age of just 53. Miguel Portas graduated in economics and followed his vocation into journalism. He pursued this profession for many years with great commitment and, as we are all aware, with great passion. Miguel was first elected to the European Parliament in 2004. At the age of 15, Miguel was arrested by the secret police of the Salazar regime for participating in a student demonstration. He took part in the Carnation Revolution, which eventually led to the fall of Portugal’s dictatorship. He was a lifelong, passionate left-wing activist and an ardent defender of democracy. I came to know Miguel Portas as a staunch European who fought with all his heart for social justice and democracy. Although – like many others – I did not always share his convictions, we were all able to experience his constructive, positive and human contributions to debates, even where the subject matter was controversial. He was a man who spoke his opinion openly, a genuinely fair person to work with who never hid behind procedural issues in any way, but rather was always willing to seek out decisions by democratic majority and, in the end, to accept it if things did not go his way. He was a man of his word. I think his sense of humour will not be forgotten by any of us in this House. Miguel was also one of our Members who was able to laugh at himself, and his laugh will be an abiding memory for us all. At this difficult time, our thoughts go out to his family and friends, who are holding a memorial service for him here tomorrow, to which you are warmly invited. We have undoubtedly lost an outstanding Member of our House to a cruel disease which he fought against bravely, but which, in the end, defeated him. We have lost a great Member of this House. May I now ask you to rise from your seats as a mark of respect."@en1

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