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TV host Kris Aquino came to the defense of her brother, President Benigno Aquino III, on Sunday, following a barrage of criticisms with the way he handled the latest crisis to rock his administration.
The President gained not a few critics after a costly encounter to hunt two “high value” terrorists in Mamasapano, Maguindanao left 44 elite members of PNP Special Action Force (SAF) dead.
Friday's National Day of Mourning became a display of wrath, too, as netizens looked for the absent head of state who chose to attend a plant inauguration in Laguna instead of attending the arrival honors for the fallen soldiers in Villamor Air Base a day prior.
Unimpressed citizens came from various sectors and reached showbiz where the presidential sister is billed as the “Queen of All Media.”
Regine Velasquez, a known supporter of Aquino III’s 2010 presidential bid, called him out for lack of empathy and grace towards the soldiers’ grieving families, prompting Kris to unfollow her and husband Ogie Alcasid on photo-sharing site Instagram. She followed the couple again after clearing the air with Ogie.
MORE: Celebrities pay respects to fallen SAF men
Kris also reportedly unfollowed Judy Ann Santos after the actress posted an image of United States President Barack Obama meeting the bodies of his fallen troops, which she captioned: "Just saying... Obama knows his priorities…”
It was not clear though if Kris saw her brother’s ex-girlfriend, TV host Grace Lee’s Instagram post explaining why the angry netizens wanted the president at the arrival honors.
"There is only one head of the state. Only one commander in chief! You CANNOT compare the value of his presence to the presence of any ordinary citizen then use it against them when they voice out their frustration and anger!!” the South Korean immigrant pointed out.
Meanwhile, Pokwang, Kris' regular guest in her morning show "Kris TV," answered a netizen who alleged the comedienne must be too afraid to speak in solidarity with the fallen troops for fear of embarrassing her dear friend.
“Hindi porke wala kaming nababanggit tungkol sa fallen 44 na pulis na nagbuwis ng buhay ay wala na kaming simpatiya. Wag kang mas marunong sa nararamdaman naming artista! Pilipino rin kami at hindi ibig sabihin nito masama na kaming tao dahil wala kaming pinopost,” she said in a comment on Instagram.
The comedienne then went into conciliatory mode and urged everyone to pray for the soldiers and their families.
'Death threat is not a joke'
Kris also hit some of the unfavorable comments against her brother.
“You know me, lahat ng atake I trained myself to ignore, but when my brother’s life is threatened, a line is crossed that I will stand up to defend," she addressed a basher.
READ: PNoy recalls father’s death in Fallen 44’s necrological services
The presidential sister further reminded netizens that her father, Senator Ninoy Aquino, was assassinated in 1983. She also reported to authorities what she described as an "expression of death threat" hurled against her brother in the photo-sharing site.
“You seem to forget, my dad was assassinated, so I will never take a death threat, even just an expression.”