Azenith Briones’ spiritual booster on her fight vs Resorts World Manila


By Boy Villasanta


After the death of her husband, El Rey Reyes, during the firing and setting to fire of Resorts World Manila by a desperate gambling addict Jessie Carlos last year, veteran actress Azenith Briones has been fighting for a fair compensation for her loved one’s death.

            Briones, who is a regular fixture in many showbiz events, has been talking to her lawyer and the management of RWM to strike a just and beneficial deal for the privileges and opportunities El Rey could have done and enjoyed had he still been alive today. “Ang dami pang puwedeng gawin ng asawa ko to better our lives (My husband had still many things to do),” said Azenith.

            While Briones might have taken all these necessary steps alone to get justice from the concerned hotel and casino, she had involved her friends and colleagues in show business and social circle in her cause. The original “Temptation Island” star has dragged two of her contemporaries, Susan Henson and Daria Ramirez, in her quest for reparation of moral damages but they, too, have their own lives to live, primarily their acting commitments.

            On Susan and Daria’s absence, though, one of Briones’ constant moral boosters is Annabelle Ledesma, a socialite and friend of many celebrities. Annabelle might not be physically around to lift her morale but is a bosom buddy to rely on.

            Annabelle and Azenith’s friendship dates back in the 1990s when the former was trading crystals and other precious stones. “Matagal na kaming magkaibigan ni Annabelle. Kami pa nina Goullee Gorospe at Chito Alcid (Annabelle and I have been friends for a long time now. Even when the late fashion designer Goullee Gorospe and entertainment scribe Chito Alcid were producing shows),” shared Briones, a beauty queen herself. Azenith and Annabelle have shared moments, good and bad, that galvanized their friendship.

            When the tragedy happened in RWM, Azenith and Annabelle were calling each other. Ledesma felt very sorry for her friend. “Parang ang sakit-sakit din para sa akin (It seemed painful for me as well),” quipped Annabelle, a regular caller as well of veteran stars Annabelle Rama and Daisy Romualdez.

            During El Rey’s wake at the Reyes’ estate in San Pablo City in Laguna Province, Annabelle travelled all her way to the distant south just to grieve and console with her friend. She stayed at the wake for hours even extending to the wee hours of the following day.

            Lately, Ledesma sees to it that she keeps Azenith’s company to lighten up her day and to sustain their future business relationships. Just this Sunday, February 25, they were together in a birthday party of a common friend. “To relax and to forget worries in life,” Annabelle exclaimed.

            Azenith had been in touch with RWM constantly because the hotel-casino has also been monitoring the daily activities of the El Rey’s widow. “Nagbibigay naman sa akin ang Resorts World ng assistance like noong mga padasal ko sa forty days ni El Rey. Pero wala akong pinipirmahan sa mga financial assistance nila. (Resorts World has been giving me assistance like during a memorial 40-days for El Rey and other occasions. But I don’t sign anything). I want justice to prevail,” exclaimed Briones.



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Friday, 21 September 2018
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