MANILA - The wife of Commission on Elections Chairman Andres Bautista denied Tuesday that she had an illicit affair with an ex-model, as claimed by the poll chief.
Bautista's estranged spouse, Patricia, said she has no romantic ties with the alleged "third party," former commercial model Alvin Lim.
"We're friends. We're very good friends. We work together so if you see pictures of us together, it's normal," told ANC.
"We are very close. We're both energy healers, people can interpret that the way they want."
Patricia has claimed she discovered bank and real property documents, and several passbooks under her husband's name that were not included in his 2016 statement of assets, liabilities and net worth.
Bautista, she alleged, "might have had, or currently has, misdealing and corrupt practices while in government service."
The poll chief denied the allegation and accused his estranged wife instead of attempting to extort money from him and having an affair.
Several media reports on Monday identified Lim as Patricia's alleged lover.
The Philippine Star reported that Bautista and Lim were for many years good friends with Lim and his then partner, renowned restaurateur Margarita "Gaita" Fores.
Patricia, who had long claimed to have a "third eye" that could see angels and read people's aura, convinced Lim that he also had the gift. They later launched a business to help people with their psychic abilities, but their venture allegedly blossomed into romance, the report said.
In her ANC interview, Patricia said her alleged affair was only a "rumor" started by Fores and "just a distraction" from the issue of Bautista's supposedly concealed wealth.
She added that she can defend herself from accusations of infidelity but her husband of 17 years cannot say the same.
"At the end of the day, if he wants to talk about infidelity, I would be very careful if I were him because I can defend whatever he throws at me. I don't know if he can do the same," she said.
Atty. Lorna Kapunan, legal adviser to Mrs. Bautista, earlier said her client has a "third eye" and belongs to a society of the similarly gifted.
"Patricia is a very gifted person. Meron siyang tinatawag na third eye. She belongs to a society of similarly gifted," she told ABS-CBN News.