Sharon stands by Kiko in backing Noynoy

September 23, 2009

Ignores Korina issue

By: Bayani San Diego Jr.
Philippine Daily Inquirer
September 13, 2009     

MANILA, Philippines — Singer-actress Sharon Cuneta has refused to get dragged into a word war with broadcaster Korina Sanchez over the support extended by her husband, Sen. Francis Pangilinan, to the presidential bid of Sen. Benigno “Noynoy” Aquino III, instead of Korina’s fiance, Senator Mar Roxas.

“I don’t even want to respond to it,” Cuneta quipped. “There is no reason to fight.”

Aquino, Roxas and Pangilinan are all Liberal Party members. Roxas gave way to Aquino following a snowballing campaign to have him drafted as the LP standard bearer in 2010.

Pangilinan was on the receiving end of an on-air tirade from Sanchez, a day after Roxas backed out of the presidential race to give way to Sen. Noynoy Aquino.

Apparently, Sanchez felt that Pangilinan supported Aquino in his rise to power, which resulted in Roxas’ perceived slide down to the vice-presidential slot.

In a radio interview, Sanchez implied that Pangilinan “betrayed” Roxas and was an “ingrate” because she helped him get work in ABS-CBN.

But Cuneta, fondly called ‘Shawie,’ ‘Megastar’ or simply Mega by fans, said she and her husband have been “taking the higher ground.” “Even my husband declined to comment . . . because he’s a gentleman.”

In two separate interviews, Cuneta further clarified: “What makes me sad is that there is no need to lose friends at this point. Even if you don’t agree with someone, it doesn’t mean you’re betraying him or her.”

She asserted: “I feel that we, as the wives and partners of senators, shouldn’t get involved in issues concerning the senators. They are intelligent and educated men and can very well resolve problems on their own . . . without our interference.”

With the tact of a diplomat and the aim of a sharpshooter, Cuneta pointed out: “We are not rude people. We have a track record. We’re not perfect, but the public knows my husband and I are upright people. We are certainly not known for ‘betraying’ our friends.”

Cuneta insists that her husband’s support of Aquino’s presidential bid should not be considered an act of duplicity by anyone from Roxas’ camp.

“It’s just that Kiko shares Noynoy’s principles,” she explained. “When we support or help people, we never expect anything in return. That’s precisely why my husband ran as an independent in the last elections . . . because he wanted to steer clear of the politics of compromise.”

Although she believes in her husband’s capabilities, she is not disheartened by his decision to give up his vice-presidential bid.

“I’m not too excited about it anyway . . . Yes, Kiko wanted to run for higher office, but it’s a question of motivation. People have different reasons for running. In Kiko’s case, it’s for the greater good. We both love the country and we don’t want to give up on our country in spite of our many problems,” she said.

Case in point, she said, was her support for her husband’s advocacy to increase the number of absentee voters among overseas Filipino workers.

With her husband and friends actress Judy Ann Santos and TV host Ryan Agoncillo, she recently visited Hong Kong to encourage OFWs to register and vote in the May 2010 elections.

“What is most meaningful is doing our best in the here and now,” she explained. “So that when our kids ask us what we did for our country, we’ll be able to give them the right answer.”

Cuneta said she’s not rushing to move her family to Malacañang. “We’re very happy to live in our own house,” she said, in jest, adding It’s a home they built with their own hard-earned savings.

In any case, Cuneta noted: “Kiko is still young . . . In end, we trust in the Lord. Wherever He chooses to take us, we would go there. Wherever we would be most effective, we would be there.”


Read the article in