MANILA, Philippines – Commission on Elections (Comelec) Chairman Andres Bautista is in hot water following corruption allegations made by his own wife.
It all started on Monday, August 7, when Patricia Paz “Tish” Cruz-Bautista claimed that the Comelec chief has “unexplained wealth” worth P1 billion. If proven that Bautista had indeed omitted some items in his Statement of Assets, Liabilities and Net Worth (SALN), he may face impeachment.
In response, Bautista accused his estranged wife of setting up an “extortion plan” along with her alleged lover, businessman Alfonso “Alvin” Lim. Some details also emerged about the Cruz-Vazquez clan, Tish’s side of the family.
As both camps prepare for legal and emotional battles ahead, here’s a rundown of the cast of characters in the Bautista family saga.
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Andres “Andy” Bautista
Chairman, Commission on Elections (since 2015). He is accused by his own wife, Patricia Paz Bautista, of amassing “unexplained wealth.”
Patricia Paz “Tish” Cruz-Bautista
Estranged wife of Comelec chairman Andres Bautista. Businesswoman in the cosmetology industry. Also known for her programs and seminars for efficient households.
Jessie Cruz (+)
Banker and father of Tish Bautista. Died in 1986.
Pacita “Baby” Cruz
Mother of Tish Bautista and owner of French salon chain Franck Provost in the Philippines. Became a widow in 1986 after the death of husband Jessie Cruz. Remarried and wed Danny Vazquez in 2016. Expressed support for Andy Bautista over his ordeal.
Second husband of Baby Cruz, whom he married in 2016 after the death of his first wife, Ising Madrigal-Vazquez, very close friend of Baby.
Luisa “Ising” Madrigal-Vazquez (+)
First wife of Danny Vazquez and very close friend of Baby Cruz. Died in 2016.
Lawyer and friend of Andy Bautista. Accused by Tish Bautista of giving “commissions” to Andy whenever Divina’s law firm rendered services to clients with cases pending with the Presidential Commission on Good Government (PCGG) which Andy headed, and with the Comelec, which he now heads.
Alfonso “Alvin” Lim
Businessman and alleged lover of Tish Bautista. Former boyfriend of chef Margarita “Gaita” Fores.
Margarita “Gaita” Fores
Former girlfriend of Alvin Lim, and erstwhile friend of Tish Bautista. Chef and owner of Cibo restaurant chains.
Tish Bautista’s legal adviser in her case against Comelec chairman Andres Bautista
Martin Loon, Jam Aniag, and Robert Beltejar
Tish Bautista’s lawyers (from Aquende Yebra Aniag Loon & Associates or AYALA Law) in her case against Comelec chairman Andres Bautista
Sources: bilyonaryo.com.ph, various news reports
*Editor’s Note: We unpublished under Inside Track what turned out to be a draft statement from Mrs Pacita “Baby” Cruz-Vasquez. The draft was vetted by her son-in-law, Comelec Chairmn Andy Bautista, and was posted on social media. We unpublished the item after we found out she had yet to give her final approval for its release.