Barretto sisters’ conflicting versions of stories behind scuffle that Duterte tried to fix

October 23, 2019 - 7:21 PM
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The feuding Barretto sisters Gretchen, Claudine and Marjorie (Artwork by Uela Altar-Badayos)
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The Barretto sisters’ public spat continued on TV and on social media which revealed their ties with former Caloocan Mayor Recom Echiverri and controversial gambler Atong Ang.

The scuffle among the Barretto sisters during the wake of their father Miguel Barretto made headlines after it involved President Rodrigo Duterte, who arrived to pay respects to the late patriarch.

Miguel passed away at 82 on the morning of October 15. The family held the wake at The Heritage Memorial Park in Taguig City on October 18.

Unfortunately, not even the president of the Philippines could fix the longstanding family feud.

At the wake, Duterte reportedly asked Gretchen and Marjorie to shake hands for their late father.

However, when Marjorie refused, one of the nieces allegedly tried to slap Gretchen. This led to the scuffle among the siblings and nieces that surprised Duterte and members of the Presidential Security Group.

Marjorie was the latest among the three who made a “tell-all” interview on ABS-CBN’s TV Patrol on October 22.

What Gretchen said

Gretchen, the eldest of the three, immediately clapped back after Marjorie’s interview. Gretchen denied Marjorie’s claims in the interview that she orchestrated her arrival at the wake in the presence of Duterte, her absence at the hospital when Miguel was still alive and the reason for his heart attack.

Gretchen claimed that she was not allowed to go to the hospital because Echiverri was present. She accused the former mayor of having molested Claudine.

“I was not allowed to go to the hospital because of your outbursts and because there will be more tension for me to see ex-Mayor Echiverri (who Claudine will file a molestation case against right after the 40th day),” part of Gretchen’s lengthy rant said.

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I was not allowed to go to the hospital because of your outbursts & because there will be more tension for me to see EX MAYOR ECHIVERRI ( who claudine will file a molestation case against right after the 40 th day . The attack of your father , as you say happened ( as told to me by our mother is because you ARRANGED a lunch party for dad to spite mom for being on claudine side( you did not invite mom & that caused a huge dispute between our parents & the rest is history. Lets stick to each point so people will better understand THE TRUTH) fyi/ RELAX YOU ARE RADIATING WITH SO MUCH ANGER & ENVY & HIGHLY PARANOID. ( I DO NOT HAVE THE POWER TO ORCHESTRATE A GRAND ENTRANCE WITH THE PRESIDENT OF THE PHILIPPINES 🇵🇭 PRRD WAS KIND ENOUGH TO OFFER TO SEE ME AT THE WAKE & Only then , i was hoping you COULD CONTROL YOUR ANGER & overwhelming FEAR OF THE TRUTH.

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She also claimed that when Marjorie did not invite their mother Estrella “Inday” Barretto to a lunch party, it caused a dispute between their parents. The stress later led to Miguel’s illness.

Gretchen also shared more video clips during the event as proof of some of her assertions.

In one of them, she expressed her gratitude that their mother finally told her she loves her.

“It was a dream come true for me to finally hear the words I love you from my mother (something I thought I would never hear until the last breath of my last day),” Gretchen said.

What Claudine said

Claudine admitted that she made a scene in front of Duterte that night but she claimed it was Marjorie who provoked her.

According to her version of the incident, Marjorie who already appeared irritated walked up to her and taunted her, causing her anxiety.

When Marjorie started finger-pointing, the youngest of the three started to defend herself.

“So napikon na siya kasi pinagtatawanan na lang namin. Tapos nakaupo ako noon and sabi niya, ‘Ano lalaban ka? Lalaban ka?’ So tumayo ako. Sabi ko, ‘Oo, lalaban ako.'” Claudine told dzMM in an interview.

Claudine was also surprised when Julia allegedly cursed at her and physically attacked her. She was known to have had a close friendship with her niece before the recent incident.

“Ayaw ko na sanang ilabas ito… because whatever people say, my heart breaks kapag nasasaktan siya [Julia]. Nasasaktan rin ako. Para akong nanay na nagtatampo at nagagalit,” she said.

Marjorie’s testimony

Marjorie’s version pins the blame on Gretchen and Atong Ang, whom she purported to be lovers. She accused them of causing the tension in the family even before Duterte arrived.

One of Atong’s children and Atong’s brother supposedly sent a message to Nicole and her mother to request the nieces and nephews to stay away from the place before the couple arrives. This was to prevent any confrontation among them.

Their 26-year-old niece, Nicole, then cried because asking them to leave was unfair, Marjorie told broadcast host Karen Davila. The move annoyed many members of the family before Gretchen and Atong arrived.

“Everything was orchestrated,” she claimed.

Atong previously denied having had a relationship with Nicole, the daughter of the women’s older brother, JJ. Atong, a wealthy and influential businessman, said he only sent Nicole to school and worked as a secretary.

But Marjorie stressed that this was a lie, indicating the May-December affair was an open secret.

“Wag naman po niyang babuyin yung bata. Nakuha na nga niya ng bata si Nicole nun e. Can you imagine, how old is Nicole now, 25? They had a five-year relationship when she was not even 18. Nababoy na nga, nasira na nga ‘yung reputasyon ng bata tas ide-deny mo na naging secretary mo na lang,” she said.

Marjorie then referred to a long-swirling rumor about the father of one of her children. She admitted in the interview that Echiverri was the father of her youngest daughter.

“Di ako perfect, Karen. I may be strong in many ways but sa pagibig talaga mahina ako. I’m sorry,” she said.— Artwork by Uela Altar-Badayos