The Gutierrez family is planning to hold a thanksgiving mass tomorrow, March 19, to celebrate the string of "good news" that came their way during the past few weeks.
Actress-host Ruffa Gutierrez made this announcement at the press conference of the modern sequel of the classic film Working Girls held earlier today, March 18, at Annabel's restaurant on Tomas Morato, Quezon City.
The film is a joint venture of Viva Films, GMA Films and Unitel Productions. Joining Ruffa in Working Girls are Jennylyn Mercado, Iza Calzado, Eugene Domingo, Bianca King, Cristine Reyes, and Eula Valdes.
HAPPY FOR RICHARD. On top of the family's list worth thanking for was the dismissal of Richard Gutierrez's Reckless Imprudence Resulting in Homicide case filed by Lorayne Pardo, the wife of his late personal assistant Nomar.
Nomar was killed in a vehicular accident involving Richard on May 22, 2009 in Silang, Cavite. Lorayne sued Richard and held him accountable for the death of her husband.
The Dept. of Justice (DOJ), however, in a five-page resolution signed and endorsed by outgoing Secretary Agnes Devanadera last March 10, dismissed the case, saying that the complaint against Richard has "no basis." (CLICK HERE to read related story.)
"I'm very happy na na-dismiss na 'yong kaso. Because alam ninyo naman na aksidente talaga 'yong nangyari nun and my brother was misjudged, and para sa akin pinalabas siyang isang masamang tao," said Ruffa in an interview with PEP (Philippine Entertainment Portal) and other showbiz reporters earlier today.
She added, "So, at least ngayon na-dismiss na 'yong kaso. Alam lahat ng mga tao na talagang aksidente rin 'yong nangyari. So, I'm very happy na nabigyan kami ng pagkakataon."
Ruffa declined to comment further on her family's reaction, saying that all of them had yet to convene after the resolution was made public. Yet she said, "We're all relieved for Richard because he can finally move on with his life after all the trials that he's been through since last year." .
CUSTODY OF LORIN AND VENICE. Adding to Ruffa's elation was the court resolution issued by the Quezon City Regional Court on March 11 granting the TV host-actress sole custody of her two children with ex-husband, Yilmaz Bektas. (CLICK HERE to read related story.)
Lorin and Venice, Ruffa and Yilmaz's daughters, have been living with their mother since 2007, making the court order signed by presiding judge Jose L. Bautista a formality.
"Now because of the courts and their decision, it's finally legalized, it's official and kailangan ko din talaga 'yon para sa paperwork ng mga bata, to renew their passports, for their school," said Ruffa.
Asked about Yilmaz's reaction when informed of the resolution, Ruffa replied, "Nagulat siya and sinabi lang niya na sana hindi na lumaki nang lumaki pa 'yong issue."
The Turkish businessman is scheduled to arrive in Manila on March 25 for a visit. Incidentally, Ruffa and Yilmaz were married on the same date back in 2003 at The Fort in Taguig, City.
"Gusto raw niyang pumunta sa Pilipinas nang wala masyadong media scrutiny and he just wants to be with the kids quietly. Siyempre, matagal na rin niyang hindi nakakasama 'yong mga bata. So, sabi ko sa kanya, if he does come, siyempre, gagawa ako ng paraan para maging matahimik ang bakasyon niya," she said.
The former The Buzz co-host described her relationship with Yilmaz as "civil." They communicate through text messaging and with her ex-husband's impending visit, Ruffa is hoping that genuine friendship would blossom between them for the sake of their kids.
"I'm looking forward na darating siya," continued Ruffa about Yilmaz. "More than na-miss ko siya, na-miss din talaga siya ng mga bata."