MANILA, Philippines - President Benigno Aquino III and Valenzuela City councilor Shalani Soledad have reportedly broken up 2 weeks ago, according to the Philippine Daily Inquirer.
A source said to be close to Aquino confirmed to the broadsheet Friday night that the bachelor President and Soledad, his girlfriend of more than one year, have called it quits at the restaurant where they first dated--Alfredo's Restaurant on Tomas Morato Avenue in Quezon City.
No third party was involved, contrary to circulating rumors saying Aquino is smitten with Trish Roque, a reporter of TV5.
When RG Cruz, a reporter of ABS-CBN News, asked Aquino about Roque, he said, “not even sure I have met the individual.” (See story here).
This is not the first time that Aquino and Soledad were rumored to have broken up.
A few months ago, there was talk that the two have called it quits, a report that Soledad vehemently denied.
This time around, though, Soledad--and Aquino--refused to comment on the reported breakup.
In reply to Cruz's question about the issue, Aquino replied via SMS: "Rg let me preserve what little I have of my private life.”
Soledad said almost the same thing: “would rather not comment na muna rg.”
Inquirer also tried to get Soledad's reply, and she texted, "I'd rather not answer that for the moment."
Another source close to the First Family was also asked by Cruz if the report was true. The source said, "Baka nga."
No time for each other?
Speculations have swirled regarding the possible cause of the couple's breakup.
Aside from a possible third party, the couple's busy schedules were said to have affected their relationship.
It has been quite some time since Soledad was seen in the company of the 50-year-old bachelor President.
Although she was present during Aquino's oath taking at the Quirino Grandstand in Rizal Park last June 30, she was not there during his first State of the Nation Address at the Batasang Pambansa Complex last July 26.
And last Thursday, October 7 when Aquino gave a speech marking his first 100 days in office, Soledad was not in the audience at La Consolacion College in Manila, where the event was held.
According to the Inquirer, Aquino told a friend that the breakup was inevitable "kung hindi na siya (Soledad) masaya."
It also said that it was Aquino who initiated the breakup.
Inquirer also reported that sources said Aquino is not dating anyone seriously.