Who is Comelec chair’s estranged wife Patricia Bautista?

Jodesz Gavilan
Who is Comelec chair’s estranged wife Patricia Bautista?
Patricia Cruz Bautista comes from a family of entrepreneurs who, according to Comelec chief Andres Bautista, is supporting him amid allegations of unexplained wealth

 

MANILA, Philippines – No less than the wife of Commission on Elections Chairman Andres Bautista is accusing him of having nearly P1-billion worth of unexplained wealth.

Patricia Paz “Tisha” Bautista said she discovered information alleging her husband “might have had, or currently has, misleading and corrupt practices while in government service.”

But who is Tisha Bautista?

Her circle, both family and friends, is known to include well-known personalities and other socialities.

The 47-year-old estranged wife of the Comelec chief is the daughter of socialite and entrepreneur Pacita “Baby” Cruz who has owned French salon chain Franck Provost in the Philippines since 1988.

Tisha’s late father, Jessie Cruz, was a former banker who was once posted in Citibank Hong Kong while her maternal grandfather, Alfredo Gaborro, was a Central Luzon haciendero.

In 2016, after being a widow for nearly two decades, Tisha’s mother Baby married long-time friend and real estate developer Danny Vasquez whose late wife Luisa “Ising” Madrigal, was also a very close friend of hers (Baby’s). Ising was also a supporter of the Marcoses.

Tisha did not attend her mother’s wedding, according to reports.

Beauty school and adviser

Just like her mother, Tisha is a businesswoman in the field of cosmetology but is also known for her efforts to develop programs and seminars for efficient households.

She used to handle Franck Provost’s beauty school and also served as the president of the Center for Aesthetic Studies – a vocational school focused on cosmetology.

The center is a division of Isdanco foundation, a non-profit organization focused on “alternative education, values formation, and appreciation of Filipino culture.”

In September 2009, she founded the Angel Brigade, a volunteer arm of her foundation that responded to help calamity victims and help them recover from the effects of natural disasters.

Tisha Bautista has also penned several books on managing households. She is the author of the Smart Parenting Yaya Manual and the Maid Manual, and has also written advice columns for mothers.

Aside from writing, Tisha conducted seminars on household skills and worked as a consultant for livelihood programs and seminars for brides-to-be and housewives who want to run their households more efficiently.

She is also engaged in energy healing and aura reading.

Marrying, accusing Andy

In 2000, the then Ms Cruz married Jose Andres “Andy” Bautista who was a lawyer affiliated with a Hong Kong firm. They went on to have 4 children.

However, after 13 years, the couple became estranged. The Comelec chair said that he tried to fix the marriage by undergoing counseling but his wife remained unfaithful.

The tension between the two reached a new level when Tisha met with President Rodrigo Duterte on July 26 to disclose that her husband had amassed unexplained wealth. She later submitted an affidavit to the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) disclosing information supporting her allegations.

The money was supposedly stored in 4 bank accounts, was invested in two condominium units, real properties, and “interests in corporations and loan agreements” in 3 overseas or offshore companies.

Bautista, however, said that his wife’s actions are motivated by greed, adding that he is supported by his family as well as his wife’s Cruz-Vasquez family.

Sa totoo lang po, ako po ay biktima rito, biktima ng pagtataksil… Ang aking pagkatao, para po akong nagahasa sa aking sariling pamamahay,” he said on Monday, August 7. “Ipapakita po namin sa mga susunod na araw na ito po ay isang kaso ng pangingikil at panggigipit.

(In truth, I am the victim here, a victim of betrayal. I feel like I’ve been “raped” in my own household. We will show in the following days that this is a case of extortion and harassment.)

He also claimed that he was a victim of infidelity and that there was a third party involved with his estranged wife.

In an interview with the Inquirer, Tisha admitted that she was aware of accusations that she was one of the reasons behind the breakup of a high-profile couple.

Meanwhile, the NBI has launched a probe into the allegations of Tisha Bautista while senators also called for an investigation, saying that the allegations might raise doubts about the results of the 2016 elections.

Duterte, however, denied ordering the NBI to look into the matter, adding that he is treating the issue as a quarrel between husband and wife. (READ: Duterte distances self from corruption claims vs Bautista)

With a public hearing in the horizon, will we be hearing more from and about Mrs Andy Bautista? with reports from Katerina Francisco / Rappler.com

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Jodesz Gavilan

Jodesz Gavilan is a writer and researcher for Rappler and its investigative arm, Newsbreak. She covers human rights and also hosts the weekly podcast Newsbreak: Beyond the Stories. She joined Rappler in 2014 after obtaining her journalism degree from the University of the Philippines.