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Mario Bautista, has been with the entertainment industry for more than 4 decades. He writes regular columns for People's Journal and Malaya.

Aug 6, 2016

Father-Son Team Of Cong. Albee Benitez And Son Javi Host ABS-CBN News Channel's Number One Show, 'The Game Changer Philippines'

THE NUMBER ONE SHOW at the ABS-CBN News Channel is “The Game Changer Philippines” and they just started their 4th season. A very uplifting show aired on Saturday at 9:30 PM with repeats on Sunday at 9:30 AM, it features true stories of people who can be called game changers in bringing positive changes to society and our country.

“The Game Changer Philippines” is hosted by Alfredo “Albee” Benitez, congressman of the 3rd district of Negros Occidental, the son of former Minister of Human Settlements Jolly Benitez and the grandson of the much respected educator Helena Benitez. Their family owns the Philippine Women’s University. Albee is married to Nikki Lopez and they have two kids, Javier, nicknamed Javi, 22, who’s a student at Sta. Clara University in California; and Bettina, 17, who’s in high school.

What does he think of our new Pres. Duterte who’s definitely a game changer himself? “We have a very unique president who has a very different style in pushing the envelope as far as game-changing for the country is concerned. I can see he has a good heart na para talaga sa taong bayan.”

Duterte is advocating federalism. “That’s fine, to help decentralize our system of government.” How about bringing back the death penalty? “I have no problem with that, but we should make sure first that our justice system is foolproof for both the rich and poor.”

For the new season, Albee’s son Javi will join him as co-host of “Game Changer”. Born on October 8, 1994, Javi is very active in sports like go kart racing (with Matteo Guidicelli) where he competes locally and internationally. He’s also into football, badminton and biking. As a young boy, he used to host “Sports Kids” for Studio 23, so hosting is not new to him. He’s now thrilled to be co-hosting “Game Changer” with his dad, who’s also happy to have him. “So we can now divide the work between us,” Albee says.

Javi is being linked to pretty GMA actress Jazz Ocampo who currently stars in “Sinungaling Mong Puso”. He quickly denies rumors they’re already on. “We’re just friends and we’re still getting to know each other better,” he says. “We do communicate regularly. We text each other and I just talked to her on the phone last night. My grandmother is holding a fun run in Bacolod soon, to help some orphans who are sick, and Jazz has agreed to join us.”

Since political science is his major, does he see himself joining his dad later in politics? “I can’t say that I will at this point. Like my dad, I also want to help other people, but you can do that naman even if you’re not in public office. But later, if people would want me to serve, why not?”

Will he be willing to try showbiz? “Why not? What I want to do is an action movie.” How about co-starring with Jazz? “Puede rin.”

How’s is Cong. Albee as a father? “He’s a great dad. He doesn’t get mad but when he says something, he really means it and you have to obey him.”

One of the stories we find very significant that they featured is the Taguig Water Lily Livelihood Center where they turn water lily into charcoal bricks for fuel. Now, that there’s a controversy on coal mining, it will surely be a great alternate for fuel and energy conservation. For the new season, they now accept video presentations from students focusing on individuals and groups who aim to initiate changes in our country. A contest about this will soon be launched and great prizes will await the winners and their respective schools.