Kris Aquino to welcome French first lady

Posted at 10/17/12 6:19 PM

MANILA, Philippines -- After taking on her sisters' duties in welcoming the families of two political leaders this week, actress and host Kris Aquino is now set to meet the prime minister of France and his wife.

French Prime Minister Jean-Marc Ayrault with his wife
Brigitte Terrien. Photo courtesy of Reuters

"Normally si ate, si Ballsy, siya talaga 'yung nage-entertain ng mga first lady and all, because she's so proper, she's so pleasant. Unfortunately, she's out of the country," she said during the Wednesday episode of her morning talk show "Kris TV," explaining her role in entertaining VIPs as the sister of President Benigno Aquino III.

According to Kris, she would be last in line to represent the presidential family on such occasions. But last Monday, she found herself tasked to meet the families of Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) chairman Al Haj Murad and Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Tun Razak, when the historic Bangsamoro framework agreement was formalized.

"Next in line si Pinky, eh siya naman, her husband Manalo had open heart surgery so hindi rin siya pwede. Tapos si Viel naman is shy. She was willing, but she's shy talaga, so para sa kanya it was torture," Kris said.

"Hindi siya 'yung kagaya nating madaldal at tsika nang tsika. So lagot, si Kris na lang," she told guest co-host Lucy Torres-Gomez, laughing.

Having hosted a number of talk shows since the early '90s, Kris is known for her honest but often blunt opinions on live television, as well as during interviews with the entertainment media.

But since her brother became president in 2010, Kris has been cautioned to refrain from voicing out potentially controversial opinions. This also prompted Kris to quit a number of her professional engagements as a showbiz-oriented talk show host, until she took on "Kris TV."

According to the actress-host, her sisters had cautioned her against freely speaking on potentially sensitive matters with Murad's and Razak's wives. Kris added, however, that the meeting went better than she had expected.

"Nag-enjoy ako kay first lady of Malaysia (Datin Seri Paduka Rosmah Mansor). Naaliw ako talaga sa kanya," Kris said. "Her advocacy is the same as Pinky's, early education for children."

"Na-meet ko rin 'yung misis ni Chairman Murad, [and it went well]," she added.

Citing her "bonding" with the political leaders' respective spouses, Kris said: "Na-baptism of fire na 'ko, hindi naman ako nagpaka-taklita sa [kanila]!"

With the visit of French Prime Minister Jean-Marc Ayrault set on Friday, Kris expressed her excitement over meeting the leader's wife, Brigitte Terrien.

"Sa Friday naman, prime minister ng France at misis niya [ang makikilala ko]. O  'di ba? Iba na ko ngayon," Kris said, laughing. "'Yun ang next kwento ko, dahil 'yun exciting."

The three-day visit of Ayrault in the country, according to the Department of Foreign Affairs, will be highlighted by a meeting in Malacañang between the French Prime Minister and President Aquino, who will reciprocate the honor bestowed on his mother, former President Aquino, when she visited France in 1989.

Both leaders are expected to exchange views on moving bilateral relations forward, as well as on regional and multilateral issues.