Making a major move in his journey as a trans man, the artist who became famous worldwide as Charice Pempengco, recently changed the name of all his social media accounts to Jake Zyrus. He even deleted his older photos on Instagram.
A lot of his fans supported his move, understanding his need to align his identity with his new self.
But a number of people were also disappointed. One of them, is Jake’s grandmother, Tess Relucio, who posted her opinion on Facebook, and who aired her views in a report by MJ Felipe on ABS-CBN’s TV Patrol.
Tess said initially, “Sino ba si Charice Pempengco? Apo ko. Yung Jake Zyrus, hindi ko apo yan. Hindi ko kilala yan.”(Who is Charice Pempengco? She’s my grandchild. That Jake Zyrus, he is not my grandchild. I do not know him)
Tess told MJ that she kept quiet when her granddaughter came out as a lesbian four years ago. But when Charice changed her name to Jake, she said that’s an entirely different matter.
Grandma Tess spoke clearly against Charice becoming Jake. She said:
“Noong namatay ang daddy mo, pinipilit ninyong palitan ang Pempengco. Hindi ka nanalo…Nangunsinti ako sayo noon, Charice. Pero itong ngayon, kahit ikamatay ko anak, hindi ko kukunsintihin na maging Jake Zyrus ka”. (When your Dad died, you tried to change the name Pempengco, you did not win. I tolerated you before, Charice. But this time, even if I die, my child, I will not tolerate that you will be Jake Zyrus)
She also said that Jake should repent if he wants to succeed, and insists that Jake is a woman.
“Kung gusto mong umangat, Charice, pumunta ka rito. Magisisi ka sa ngalan ng Diyos. Magsisi ka sa lahat ng kasalanan ninyong ginawa sa akin… Sumasabog na, anak. Noon, pinagtatakpan kita, hindi ka tomboy! Ako ang naghuhugas sa iyo nung unang regla mo, ako ang nagpaligo sa iyo! Babae ka!” (If you want to rise, Charice, come here. Repent in the name of God. You should regret all the sins that you have done to me.It’s exploding, my child. Before, I covered up for you, you’re not a tomboy! I was the one who washed you during your first period, I was the one who bathed you. You are a woman!)
Watch the video below for MJ Felipe’s interview with Jake’s grandmother:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JrEP86f2LfoTV Patrol: Lola to Jake Zyrus: ‘Babae ka!’http://www.startattle.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/06/59c4f5db859aa_hqdefault.jpgJun 22, 2017
A clip of the interview posted on the page of Pambansang Kolokoy, included more bitter statements coming from Grandma Tess. Jake’s grandma went on to say that she is wondering why NSO allowed the name change. Addressing Jake, she said he was born Charice Pempengco, and will carry that name to the grave, not Jake Zyrus.
Jake’s grandma still keeps the old dresses that her grandchild wore during his young years as Charice. The old lady still listens to old tapes of Jake’s world-famous songs and covers, back when he was still a cute, bubbly girl.
Despite her outburst, Grandma Tess says she still loves Charice: “Andito pa rin ang kandungan ni Nanay. Andito ang aking braso na yayakap sayo”. (Mother’s bosom is still here. My arms are here to hug you.)”