Pepe Herrera, known to TV viewers as Benny in FPJ's Ang Probinsyano, revealed the real reason why he had to leave the show.
Last January 9, Benny sacrificed his life to save Cardo (the character played by Coco Martin).
Benny's death on the ABS-CBN primetime program became talked-about in social media since it came as a surprise to the show's loyal viewers.
Days after the episode aired on TV, Coco said that Pepe had to leave the show since he will be going to New Zealand to take care of his mother.
PEP.ph (Philippine Entertainment Portal) asked Pepe at the January 17 press conference of Sakaling Hindi Makarating for the real reason why he had to leave the show.
He explained, "Ever since I was a kid, I've been travelling with my mother. Sinasama niya ako sa mga lakad niya.
"Social worker yung nanay ko, e. Different workshops, different training seminars sa probinsya tapos pagkagraduate ko and while I was in college, nakabyahe ako sa iba't ibang bansa.
"Basically, I am a traveler just like my mother. Nagkataon lang na recently na nagkaroon siya ng mga karamdaman."
At this point, Pepe also revealed that he also had ailments.
"Ako meron akong karamdaman, meron akong mga ailments na very treatable, nothing to worry about.
"But I just decided na this is the right time to take care of my body and my mother. And just go back to the mother and son thing that we regularly do."
Pepe clarified that he is not migrating to New Zealand, contrary to reports saying that he will be leaving the Philippines for good.
He narrated, "Nililinaw ko na I am not migrating, I am traveling.
"So that's different kasi nabasa ko yung article na yun, e. I think palagay ko lang iba yung sinasabi ni Coco sa naging dating sa tao.
"Kasi yung sinabi lang naman ni Coco, e, aalis siya. Hindi naman sinabing aalis siya for good."
Does he already have plans once he returns to show business?
Pepe answered: "Sa totoo lang kasi, honestly, I've told people when they ask me kung kailan ako babalik, I say I don't know, because I really don't know.
"I just know that I need to do some things, and kailan ko siya matatapos, hindi ko alam."
EXPERIENCE WITH COCO. After more than a year of working with Coco in ABS-CBN's top-rating program, Pepe described the experience by saying, "Makulay ang experience with Coco kasi it can be very chill one moment and it can be very tense at one moment.
"Of course, there are a lot of tender, laugh-out-loud, frustrating moments because of external factors also, stress of work and ecstasy of doing things na makakapagpasaya ng maraming tao, ganon ka dynamic yung relationship namin.
"But at the end of the day, we're always honest to each other na, 'Ganito yung pakiramdam ko anong palagay mo?' 'O, eto naman yung nararamdaman mo, sige pakinggan kita.'
"Yun siguro yung pinakanagustuhan ko sa pagsasama namin, totoo kami sa isa't isa."
Pepe also related the moments they shared before taping their final scene together.
"I think it's not very emotional behind the scenes. It’s tender kasi nakakapagod yung eksena, e.
"Kaya noong wala pang take, habang nag aantay kami ng preparation ng crew for the cameras and the lights and all, nakaupo lang kami sa isang tabi ni Coco, nakakandong sa kanya si Onyok [Pineda]. Yung usual naming chill moment.
"Sinabi lang niya, 'Mamimiss ka namin.' Ako, inakbayan ko lang siya. Ganun lang.
"Di naman kami madrama, ganun lang. Masasabi kong marami kaming pinagdaanan, sa dami ng lugar na pinuntahan namin together, sa probinsya, sa labas ng bansa but at the same time, nananatili yung respeto sa isa't isa."