Show biz celebrity Kris Aquino confronted a female fan of her husband, basketball star James Yap, shouting insults at the woman and her mother just outside their upscale Pasig City residence late Wednesday, the Inquirer learned Thursday. The popular TV host and movie actress spent about 10 minutes at the gate of the Valle Verde 2 home of Mayen Austria, 35, according to Austria’s uncle, Gabby Lopez (no relation to the ABS-CBN chair).
Lopez said he was at the Austria residence and that the family was entertaining guests—including Legazpi City Bishop Joel Baylon—when Aquino arrived.
Reached on the phone Thursday night, Baylon confirmed he was at the Austria residence when Aquino arrived, but “I only knew about it when Mayen, between sobs, related to us the incident immediately after Kris left.”
Baylon said he didn’t see the actual encounter since he was inside the house with another guest, a nun based in Spain.
The bishop said Mayen and her mother Minna—whose family had been his friends for more than 20 years—were “obviously distressed” by what happened.
Lopez refused to elaborate on the incident, saying he didn’t want to add to the “trauma” suffered by his niece. “All I can say is God sides with who is right and tells the truth,” he said in a phone interview.
Pressed for details, Lopez replied: “I don’t want to answer that, but I now know who I will not vote for.”
Kris is a daughter of the late President Corazon Aquino and youngest sibling of Sen. Benigno “Noynoy” Aquino III, the Liberal Party standard-bearer in the May presidential elections.
Boy Abunda version
But according to TV host and Aquino’s best friend Boy Abunda, she was “very cool and polite” during her encounter with Austria, Yap’s rumored girlfriend. It would, therefore, be “unfair” to say that Aquino quarreled with a girl over James. Abunda explained: “Kris was bothered when she heard James talking on the phone with a girl who was crying. She learned from James that the girl was heartbroken and was confiding in him.”
“Kris said that since she was in the neighborhood, she might as well introduce herself to the girl and the girl’s family,” he said. Aquino also lives in Valle Verde 2 but has reportedly sold her house and is said to be moving out at the end of the month. Aquino showed up at the gate of the Austria residence at around 4 p.m. Wednesday, when the family was hosting visitors in their living room, according to another source who declined to be named. “Mayen went out and saw Aquino, who immediately threw invectives at her,” the source said. Mayen’s mother heard the commotion from inside the house and went out to see her daughter already in tears.
“(Aquino) also shouted at her (Minna): Anong klaseng nanay ka? Anong klase ang palaki mo sa anak mo? (What kind of mother are you? What kind of upbringing did you give your child?)” the source said.
Mother and daughter did not answer back, until Aquino left, the source said.
But in Abunda’s version of the incident, Aquino first spoke with Austria’s mom about what has been going on in her relationship with Yap.
“She said they almost split up in December and that they were separated for weeks. Kris also told [Austria’s mom] that she is fighting hard for their marriage. She said she really wanted their marriage to work. In the middle of their conversation, (Mayen) arrived and said there was nothing going on between her and James and that they’re just friends,” Abunda said.
‘Just a basketball fan’
Abunda insisted that Aquino “spoke in a very low voice” during her conversation with the Austrias.
He also said Mayen was not Yap’s girlfriend but a fan of his professional basketball team, Purefoods Tender Juicy Giants.
“In all fairness to James, he did not hide from Kris that he was talking with the girl. I think he even used his phone in front of Kris,” Abunda stressed.
“I understood why Kris did it. I would’ve done the same thing. It was unfair to say that Kris quarreled with the girl. She spoke with caution and temperance. It’s just that with what’s happening between them, she thought that if there was a problem, hindi na n’ya palalakihin pa (she won’t blow out it of proportion). She would like to nip it in the bud.”
In 2007, Yap was rumored to have had romantic liaisons with Hope Centeno, then a receptionist at the Belo Medical Clinic, which Aquino used to endorse. Yap denied the rumors. Source: Philippine Daily Inquirer (Nancy Carvajal/Marinel Cruz)