Grace Lee sees self marrying the President
That’s where Grace Lee says her relationship with President Benigno Aquino III is headed.
In her morning show, “Good Times in the Morning,” on Wednesday, the Korean-born radio and TV personality was asked by her New York-based coanchor, Mo Twister, how long their relationship would last.
She replied, “The full length.”
Needled further on where she expected their dates would lead to, Lee answered, “The altar.” She added, “I’m praying for this.”
Mr. Aquino celebrated his birthday on Wednesday, Feb. 8, the same day Lee said they were destined for the altar.
Malacañang was mum on Lee’s latest statements. “We do not comment on the President’s private life,” deputy presidential spokesperson Abigail Valte said on Saturday.
The romance between the 29-year-old Lee and the 52-year-old Mr. Aquino has been met with skepticism by many who have become used to the President’s short-lived romances.
Among those linked to him in his almost two-year presidency were Valenzuela Councilor Shalani Soledad, who recently married Pasig City Rep. Roman Romulo, stylist Liz Uy, stockbroker Len Lopez and teacher Bunny Calica.
During the program, Mo Twister predicted the relationship to last until August.
He then opened the phone lines to the question, “How long will this (Aquino-Lee) relationship last?” One listener replied, “May.”
The bachelor President admitted two weeks ago that he had been dating Lee.
While Mr. Aquino asked media to grant him the privacy that, he said, he was entitled to, Lee was forthcoming in media interviews. She disclosed that she and the President would talk animatedly for three to five hours.
“He’s brilliant. He is the most intelligent man I’ve met in my life,” an obviously smitten Lee enthused, even describing the President as “a walking encyclopedia.”
Lee revealed in an off-camera talk with a TV host that the President had offered to provide her security, courtesy of a team from the Presidential Security Group (PSG). This prompted presidential deputy spokesperson Abigail Valte to say that the Palace would still have to review whether the PSG mandate could cover even persons outside the President’s official family.
Lee’s talent manager, Arnold Vegafria, said the radio and TV jockey first met the President on June 27, 2011, at the inauguration of a plant of Korea Electric Power Corp. in Barangay Colon in Naga, Cebu. Vegafria said the President was heard to have remarked that Lee was guapa (pretty), mistaking her to be a Cebuana.
Their second meeting took place during the state visit of Korean President Lee Myung-bak in November, where Lee was in Malacañang as an interpreter and host of the event.
Before the end of 2011, Vegafria said the President granted Lee an interview in Malacañang for her radio show. “And that’s it,” he said.
In an earlier exclusive interview with TV5’s Luchi Cruz-Valdes for the show “Journo,” Lee admitted that the 22-year age difference between them sometimes bothered her. “But the more I get to know him, the less I feel the age difference,” she said.
Asked by Cruz-Valdes if she saw the relationship “pushing through already,” Lee replied, “I don’t think we’re playing around. We’re both not at the age to be playing around.”
In her radio show, Lee said she would try to convince the President to stop smoking.
She has met with two of the President’s elder sisters, Ballsy Cruz and Pinky Abellada, but has yet to meet his movie-and-TV-star sister, Kris Aquino.
Lee denied earlier rumors linking her romantically to Kris’ former husband, basketball star James Yap. With a report from Christine O. Avendaño
(Editor’s Note: VERA Files is put out by veteran journalists taking a deeper look at current issues. “Vera” is Latin for true.)
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