Atong Ang clarifies relationship with Gretchen - The Most Popular Lists


Atong Ang clarifies relationship with Gretchen

“She’s like a sister to me.”

That was how Atong Ang described his relationship with rumored girlfriend Gretchen Barretto on national television Thursday night in a one-on-one interview with veteran broadcaster Noli de Castro on ABS-CBN’s “TV Patrol.”

READ: ‘No Naked Photos like Marjorie’: Gretchen Barretto slams sis as she speaks up on ‘relationship’ with Atong Ang

The Filipino-Chinese businessman took the same route as Gretchen’s estranged sister Marjorie to “tell all” on primetime TV after a photo of him and Gretchen sleeping next to each other in a plane with their hands intertwined went viral on social media.

According to Ang, Gretchen’s longtime partner Tony Boy Cojuangco, who is his business partner and good friend, knows there is nothing going on between him and the controversial actress. He said they would often go out as a group and travel together and the only reason why he was with Gretchen on that flight was  because the couple never flies together for safety reasons.

READ: Barretto Sisters’ Feud: Claudine admits slapping Marjorie at Dad’s Wake

“They never take the same flight even to the same destination because of their daughter [Dominique]. That way, they can be sure she’ll still have one parent left in case something unfortunate happens to the other’s plane,” Ang said in Filipino.

He insisted there was no malice in the photo because he simply fell asleep while Gretchen chatted away to him.

“She just fell asleep too eh para lang kaming magkapatid,” Ang said.

READ: Julia Barretto Throws Shade by Posting Family Photo without Gretchen & Claudine

Asked why there have been other sightings of him holding hands with Gretchen in public, Ang said he was just being a gentleman assisting her when he can.

Sent by Tony Boy

To Ang’s defense, the best proof that Cojuangco sees no malice in his friendship with Gretchen is the fact that it was Conjuangco who asked him to accompany Gretchen to her father’s wake on the night of the infamous commotion.

Ang recounted how the PMS (Presidential Management Staff) had called Gretchen to inform her that President Rodrigo Duterte was going to her father’s wake and requested she be there.

Gretchen politely declined at first since she had been long estranged with her family but she received another call from the PMS who said the President is still expecting her there.

It was then that Cojuangco called Ang and asked him to accompany Gretchen in case something untoward happens among the siblings. Apparently, Cojuangco could not go himself because of back pain.

READ: Gretchen Barretto aired her frank message for her niece Julia Barretto about the person who should have raised her

She said, he said

In her exclusive interview, Marjorie said the commotion began when she refused to reconcile with Gretchen upon the request of President Duterte after which Ang suddenly leaned over to grab her arm.

Ang denied the incident and said all he did was put his arm in between Marjorie and the President when she started going into hysterics in order to protect Mr. Duterte.

“Respeto lang [to the President],” he told Marjorie.

He also denied allegations that he asked Nicole and her cousins to leave the wake because he and Gretchen were arriving.

“We were only there for the President.”

READ: Duterte rescued Marjorie from Atong’s wrath: ‘The President was holding me. ’Pag safe si Presidente, safe ako

Barretto boyfriend

Asked point blank if he was romantically involved with Nicole, Claudine and Gretchen based on the hodgepodge of stories coming out, Ang replied, “I definitely deny I had a relationship with Claudine and Gretchen.

People can think what they want to think happened with me and Nicole but I’d rather not talk about it—she has a boyfriend or a husband now and a child and I want to respect her family.”

READ: Gretchen Barretto aired her frank message for her niece Julia Barretto about the person who should have raised her

According to Ang, he became a friend of the Barretto family through Marichi, wife of Jayjay Barretto and Nicole’s mother who worked for him. Eventually, Nicole acted as Ang’s assistant.

“Basta sinabi ni Nicole na naging boyfriend niya ako, eh sinasabi ko nga hindi ako pwedeng magsalita ng oo at hindi. As is na lang siya kasi hindi maganda sa side ko na ako pa ang magsasalita.”

In ending, Ang said he hopes the Barrettos will work out their difference if only for their widowed mother. If they don’t then they can just carry on giving the public an entertaining diversion through their bickering.

READ: San Miguel CEO addresses rumor that he got into relationship with Julia Barretto

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This article first appeared on The Manila Times.

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