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Alice Guo dared to take lie detector test as lawmakers probe her birth parents, alleged romantic links to POGO official

By John Patrick Magno Ranara Published May 23, 2024 2:19 am Updated May 23, 2024 2:31 am

As the controversial identity case of Bamban, Tarlac mayor Alice Guo continues, claims are now being made that her supposed birth parents from her birth certificate may not even exist.

During a Senate panel on women, children, family relations and gender equality hearing, Sen. Risa Hontiveros couldn’t help but ponder on this possibility as she stated that the marriage or birth records of Alice’s parents, Angelito Guo and Amelia Leal, could not be located by the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA).

"Nung pinacheck ko po, wala pong record ng kasal sina Angelito Guo at Amelia Leal. Okay? So 'yan ang sinasabi po ng PSA certification natin," Hontiveros said.

"At ito ang higit pang malala. Walang birth record at all sina Angelito Guo at Amelia Leal. So, maitatanong talaga, hindi po kaya Angelito Guo and Amelia Leal Guo don't even exist?" she further questioned.

The lawmaker then pointed out the discrepancies between Angelito and Amelia’s number of children. Documentary evidence states that they have three, while Alice claims that they only have one, which adds to the confusion about whether or not they exist.

The Bamban mayor, who is still standing by her Filipino citizenship, attributed the issue of her family's birth records to her father having different partners.

"Hindi po ako yung nag-prepare po ng birth certificate po nila. Kaya wala po akong idea po. Natanong ko rin po sa tatay ko po, after po nung last Senate hearing po, tinanong ko po sa kanya kung kapatid ko po ba yung dalawa, [si Sheila Leal Guo at Siemen Leal Guo]. And he said yes po," Guo said.

After the issues with her family couldn't be solved, the discussion then moved to her father's citizenship, which Guo asserted was Chinese after she previously claimed in past hearings and interviews that he was Filipino and Filipino-Chinese. She also said that he came from the province of Fujian.

Hontiveros then questioned, "The Chinese national cannot have two citizenships. Wala po silang dual citizenship. He has a Chinese passport, pero ang nakalagay sa birth certificate mo ay Pilipino siya. So, naiintindihan mo ba kung bakit ang gulo-gulo po ng kwentong buhay nyo tungkol sa pamilya nyo? Bakit?"

"Ayaw ko po magsinungaling. Ang tatay ko po ay Chinese at hindi po ako 'yung nag-prepare po ng birth certificate ko po," Guo said.

According to the senator, both Guo's birth certificate and citizenship are "riddled with holes." Since her father is claimed to be Chinese, she would need her mother to be Filipino in order for her to qualify for her mayoral position.

"Pero, itong Amelia Leal, whoever she is, kasambahay ba, o nanay ninyong tatlo, is a person with no birth record. So, how can you derive citizenship from a woman whose very existence is questionable?" Hontiveros said.

"Alam ko po ako ay isang Filipino. Lumaki din po ako na alam ko po ako ay, isang Filipino po," Alice could only say.

Childhood and relationship with siblings

While Alice denied in an interview with ABS-CBN News anchor Karen Davila that she knew her half-siblings personally, records say otherwise as it was revealed that she and Sheila had traveled together at least three times.

"Travel buddies kayo ni Sheila Guo. At wala namang masamang mag-travel kasama ng kapatid. I would enjoy that also. Pero, why would you lie about something like this? Bakit po kailangan magsinungaling sa bagay na napakadali namang pong i-check?" Hontiveros asked.

The mayor then admitted that the reason why she displayed a supposed lack of knowledge in the previous hearing was because she didn't want to involve her family in the issue.

"Ayaw ko po madamay po ang ibang tao. Kaya lahat po na natanong nyo po sakin puro naging I don't know po ang sagot ko po. Dahil ayaw ko po madamay po sila. At pribadong tao po yung mga ibang tao po nababanggit, ayaw ko po sila madamay po dito," she said.

With regard to her childhood, the embattled politician claimed that she grew up on a farm, something that other lawmakers were suspicious about.

"Tell us about the first nine years of your life. Tell us about your farm life. It must have been a charming, idyllic life. Who are your Chinese or Filipino playmates?" Sen. Loren Legarda asked.

"If you’re Chinese and fronting for other people, then go back to your country. But if you’re born here, convince us," she added.

However, Guo once more could not give a concrete answer as she could no longer recall details of her childhood. She was then pressed to speak in her Chinese language, and while she initially asked not to do so, she eventually spoke in Fookien, which is a regional dialect of Mandarin Chinese that is spoken by most Chinese living in the Philippines.

"My father is from China. I am not Chinese. I am Filipino," she said in the dialect.

Alleged romantic ties to official running illegal POGOs

The mayor's love life was also discussed during the hearing after Senate president Pro Tempore Jinggoy Ejercito Estrada inquired about her alleged live-in partner who is managing the operations of illegal Philippine Offshore Gaming Operators (POGOs) in her town.

Estrada's probing was based on a "very reliable source" who claimed that Alice has a relationship with an unnamed mayor in Pangasinan.

Guo initially laughed off the idea before rejecting the romantic ties, saying, "Wala pong katotohanan po 'yun. Kahit po ilabas niyo po sila, magharap kami, hindi po 'yun totoo."

"Alam ko na po yung nili-link niyo sa akin, pero wala pong katotohanan yun, hindi po totoo," she stressed. "Wala po akong boyfriend. Wala po akong partner, wala rin po akong POGO business."

Apart from her romantic links, Guo's ties to her co-incorporators in Baofu Compound were also probed by Hontiveros, but she asserted that she had no idea about the money laundering schemes of her foreign business partners.

"Nalaman ko po kahapon doon sa Facebook post niyo po. After ko malaman, sinearch ko sila," Alice told the senator.

Excluding the Bamban mayor, Baofu's incorporators are Rachel Joan Malonzo Carreon from the Philippines; Zhiyang Huang from Cyprus; Zhang Ruijin from China; and Baoying Lin from the Dominican Republic.

According to Hontiveros, Zhang has connections to the "largest money laundering case in Singapore" while Baoying Lin also has criminal records.

Guo’s assets

Like in her interview with Davila, Guo denied owning a McClaren 620R and said that she borrowed it for a car show. She stuttered as she named a certain Roy “Rodrines” as the owner and later corrected this to be a Roy Padiernos.

The Bamban mayor also denied having over a dozen cars—including a Toyota Land Cruiser, Isuzu Truck, Ford Ranger, Gladiator Jeep, and more—under her name and said that this was the first she even heard of some of those properties.

“Hindi po yung pag-aari ko na. Kaya hindi po siya naka-declare po sa akin. Idodouble check ko rin po yung na-mention nyo po. Yung iba po kasi dito, ngayon ko lang po narinig. Ngayon ko lang po nalaman na nakapangalan sa akin. Pero definitely po, wala pong ganun sa sasakyan po," she told Hontiveros.

On the topic of her helicopter, Guo said that she had sold it under a deed of conditional sale, but according to the Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines, the chopper is still under the mayor’s name, as per Hontiveros.

British company New Summit Industries Limited, said to be paying for the chopper in installments, is to be the new owner, Guo said.

Lie detector challenge

To help put an end to all the confusion surrounding Guo's case, Sen. Raffy Tulfo challenged her to undergo a lie detector test, to which she accepted.

"You are not interested about the history of you and your family. That is very important. Tumatakbo ka and nasa public office ka. Are you willing to undergo a lie detector test?" Raffy asked.

"Para sa lahat ng sinasabi mo — especially na ikaw ay love child, na hindi niyo ito pinag-uusapan ng tatay mo. Everything about you and your past. Are you willing? This is voluntary though," he added.

While Guo agreed to the test, Tulfo informed her that the results of lie detector tests are not accepted in court. Instead, they will be used to determine if she is lying in her statements.

"Kasi nung nagsabi ka ng totoo, it will help you. On the other hand, kapag it’s the other way around, dito malalaman na ikaw ay sinungaling, pwede kang ma-contempt ng committee at pwede kang makulong," he said.

Before Guo could answer whether the agreement was "fair enough," however, the discussion moved on to a different topic. 

Previously in her interview with Davila, Guo said she won’t resign from her post as mayor amid the controversy she’s facing. In fact, she’s seeking reelection in the 2025 polls. "I will continue serving my constituents." (with reports from Marc Jayson Cayabyab, Ayie Licsi)