Has Kris Aquino gone too far with her public confessionals this time?
A formidable media and marketing personality, Kris Aquino is famous for using her vast social media reach to reveal various details of her private life. While there is usually a reason for her revelations, her rants of last weekend have escalated to nuclear meltdown level.
It all started when she reacted negatively last Friday (April 20) to a post by her former husband, basketball player James Yap, on Instagram. Yap had greeted their son Bimby a happy birthday and acknowledged that though they hadn’t spent much time together recently, “I’m always here for you. I will always be your papa.”
Aquino accused Yap of not making enough time to see his son. “So why haven’t you two seen each other? It’s simple—you have no use for Bimb. Because we don’t have power anymore, so why would you hang around? It’s easy enough [to see him] if you wanted to.” (translated from Tagalog)
Kris is also the youngest sister of Benigno “Noynoy” Aquino III, who was Philippine president from 2010 to 2016. She and Yap married in 2005 when Noynoy was congressman for Tarlac. Noynoy and Kris’ mother is former president Corazon Aquino.
Kris also lashed out at James for, among other things, not contributing to their child’s expenses. She also hinted at a “compromise financial agreement of 2011 that gave you [Yap] millions,” stemming from the annulment of marriage she filed.
On Sunday, Aquino went on another anger spree after television show host Korina Sanchez featured Yap, his current partner Michaela Cazzola, who is pregnant, and their two-year-old son.
Aquino said the glowing feature on Yap was a “slap in the face” from “the wife of Mar Roxas. Yes,” she went on, “pinepersonal ko…at ang ganti sa ‘kin at sa mga anak ko ngayon ay binida pa ang deadbeat na tatay.”
She then apologized to her brother and Mar’s mother (Judy Araneta Roxas) and added, “Klarong-klaro sa ‘kin kung bakit ang nanalong pangulo ay si Duterte.”
Now this is where we enter murky waters and see how showbiz and politics are irremediably intertwined in Kris Aquino, precisely because she straddles both worlds as a media personality and the relative of two past Philippine presidents. It’s a lesser aspect of Korina, too, as the wife of former presidential candidate Mar Roxas.
Now this is perhaps where Aquino’s resentment against Sanchez stems from: Kris campaigned heavily for Mar Roxas in the 2016 elections as a payback of sorts for Roxas ‘sacrificing’ his presidential ambition in 2010 to give way for Noynoy Aquino, seen then as the stronger candidate, to run as president. That time, Roxas settled for running for vice president but lost to Jejomar Binay. In 2016, Roxas lost the presidential race to Rodrigo Duterte.
The 2016 campaign for Mar must have been heavy slogging for Kris, because Roxas was none too popular and his wife was seen as a liability rather than an asset, notwithstanding her own media clout.
It seems that Aquino sees Sanchez’s decision to feature Yap and his family as a breach of utang na loob and a lack of loyalty for past favors. In any case, Kris’ rants bring up quite a few points to ponder.
First, how long and how far does utang na loob extend? Is Korina supposed to weigh every decision she makes for her show against past favors received? Doesn’t she have the freedom to decide who to feature on her show? James Yap has his own fans and she was probably counting on their viewership for that episode. An offended Kris always has the option of steering clear of Korina henceforth.
Second, given the polarization of loyalties in present society into “pro” and “anti” Duterte, “ka-DDs” (die-hard Duterte supporters) and “dilawans” (‘yellows, or those associated with Noynoy Aquino and the past administration), Kris Aquino’s statement that “now it is clear to me why Duterte won the presidency” is also a slap in the face to the Roxases, particularly because Kris is the sister of the yellowest of the yellows, Noynoy Aquino.
Many have asked, can Kris, for once, just keep things to herself? That greeting of Yap’s would have been innocuous enough for the average reader, and only Kris and her friends would have known the entire backstory that really does not concern the general public. As it is, her reaction opened up a can of personal worms that no one even knew existed.
But then Kris Aquino has always lived her life outside of the box. Her entire life is a matter of public record, by her personal preference. From childhood, she has been in the public eye and perhaps this is why she feels she can tell the whole world everything about herself, even if it’s none of our business.
Kris, for all her being taklesa, is a transparent person. As we’ve seen over the decades, she’s not going to change. She and her personal dramas will always be around, politics regardless.
Dr. Ortuoste is a writer and communication consultant. FB and Twitter: @DrJennyO