Poe natural-born Pinoy, says OSG

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Sen. Grace Poe is a natural-born citizen under the Constitution, the Office of the Solicitor General (OSG) has insisted before the Supreme Court, making her eligible to run for President in the May 2016 elections.

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The OSG last Tuesday cited “substantial evidence” based on the 1935, 1973 and 1987 Constitutions.

“The inclusive policy to consider foundlings as natural-born Filipino citizens is carried over into the 1973 and 1987 Constitutions. As with the 1935 Constitution, the deliberations of 1973 and 1987 Constitutions are bereft of any evidence to show any change in the policy begun in 1935,” Solicitor General Florin Hilbay stated.

The OSG told the High Court that a foundling like Poe must be considered a natural-born Filipino and that she has satisfied the 10-year residency requirement to be eligible for the presidency.

In an 11-page memorandum before the SC, Hilbay argued that the Commission on Elections (Comelec) has committed grave abuse of discretion in canceling the certificate of candidacy of Poe over the citizenship and residency issues.

He had presented figures from the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) that the probability of a child born in the Philippines is a Filipino is more than 99.99 percent.

It will now be absurd to think, the Solicitor General said, that any foundling could not have Filipino parentage.

PSA records show that from 2010 to 2014, on a yearly average, there were 1,766,046 children born in the Philippines to Filipino parents, as opposed to 1,301 children born in the Philippines of foreign parents.

“Petitioner’s physical features [height of 5 feet 2 inches, brown eyes, dark brown hair, low nasal bridge and an oval-shaped face],.. are consistent with the physical features of the ordinary Filipino. And circumstances of when she was found [she was found abandoned in a Roman Catholic Church in Jaro, Iloilo, the population of which was predominantly Filipino]” point to Poe being a Filipino, Hilbay said.

He also argued that the senator regained her natural-born Philippine citizenship when she availed of repatriation under Republic Act 9225.

“She executed an oath of allegiance to the Republic of the Philippines on 07 July 2006; and she filed with the Bureau of Immigration a petition for reacquisition of Philippine citizenship on 10 July 2006, which was granted in an order dated 18 July 2006,” Hilbay said.

On the residency issue, he noted that Poe had validly renounced her US citizenship and has been a resident of the Philippines for at least 10 years before the May 9, 2016 polls.

“The Comelec decision to shift the burden of evidence on petitioner places an undue burden on the exercise of a fundamental political right of a member of a discrete and insular minority that has a right to equal protection in general and a right to ‘equal access to opportunities for public service,’” Hilbay said.

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14 Comments

  1. Might as well throw the constitution into the trash if the Supreme Court allow the American to run for president.

  2. I have to laugh when so many of you speak of her not wanting to use the dna to check if marcos is related to her from his dad having an affair then say she is not a natural born filipino with filipino parentage. Surely you cant have it both ways.

  3. comment lang.. on

    bakit pinagtatalunan ang citizenship ni Grace Sonora, siya ay natural born citizen, oo dahil ang ina at ama nya ay pilipno. Napakalaking resemblance ni Grace kay Rosemarie Sonora at kay Ferdinand Marcos hindi natin ito maipagkakaila masdan niyong mabuti ang kanilang mga larawan. Kung hindi totoo na magulang ni Grace ang 2 bakit ayaw nyang magpa DNA test ng maisampal nya sa mga taong ngsasabing siya ay hindi bunga ng 2, kung totoo nais nyang mglingkod s bayan simulan nya dapat sa sarili nya ang pagiging totoo sa kanyang pgkatao.walang mawawala kng gagawin nya ito lalo pa syang mamahalin ng taong bayan kng magiging totoo xa.

  4. As long as you are on the side of what is true and what is good, you will be blessed. Senator Grace Poe, we firmly believe that you will hurdle all of the disqualification cases thrown at you. I hope that our unwavering support and steadfast loyalty are sources of strength and inspiration for you. God bless you on your journey in seeking the presidency!

  5. Luis Villareal on

    God bless and give you glory, Senator Grace Poe. I know you are sincere in offering yourself to serve the Filipinos! May God continue to light your way and may you continue to be a channel of strength and inspiration to others!

  6. Maria Gatchalian on

    Senator Grace Poe isn’t trying to amend the constitution, or disrespect, or mutilate. She is only exercising her rights as a citizen of a democratic country. We are a democracy! This means that it isn’t only these government officials who have a say on critical issues or decisions but the people also hold the power to make a decision. To exhaust all legal actions available to fight for what is right and just and is according to the Constitution is the essence of the democracy we’ve meticulously built up for decades and decades.

  7. Senator Grace Poe cannot be disqualified from the Presidential race. She’s qualified to run, she’s been here in the Philippines for more than years and exactly 10 years and 11 months on the day of the election. Her intention to return here can be dated way back June of 2004 when she returned to the Philippines and enrolled her children here. Residency must be counted when her intention was to stay here in the country. The Supreme Court said that “in order to acquire a new domicile by choice, there must concur: 1) residence or bodily presence in the new locality, 2) an intention to remain there, and 3) an intention to abandon the old domicile…” It is evident today that Senator Grace Poe’s been residing here in the country. She already abandoned her old domicile by that time..

  8. I have high hopes that the Supreme Court will uphold the decision of the SET and reverse the decision of the COMELEC. Senator Grace Poe is qualified to seek the presidency – she is a natural-born Filipino according to our Constitution, to international laws, treaties and conventions, and in May of 2016, she would have already been residing in the Philippines for 10 years and 11 months. Hoping for the best for Senator Grace Poe. She is rightfully the choice of millions of Filipinos all over the world.

  9. Pierre Noel Raspeguy on

    Hilbay just fired a fatal shot into the Lllamanzares campaign …. the SolGen is saying that Lllamanzares became an alleged NBFC in July 2006, i.e., Pilipino siya from July 2006. This position of the SolGen, coupled with the SC decision in Coquilla vs. COMELEC (G.R. 151914), spells disaster for Llamanzares. And there she was, thanking Hilbay for the supposed “support” the SolGen gave her case. LOL.

  10. Natalia Salvacionq on

    Senator Grace Poe is definitely a Filipino, a natural born and it can be seen in her acts that she really wants to serve the country for the Filipinos. Country before self.

  11. Aquino allies and appointee’s all have the same opinion, they want Poe to run for President. That must mean Aquino is lying when he says he is not backing her.

  12. I never thought that a lawyer, BAR Topnotcher as introduced acting as the Tribune of the Filipino people, interprets the Constitution the way he does. Turning his back at the COMELEC and choosing to defend a ” Special Foundling ” he wants to create an attack to the fundamental law of the country. Is Hilbay really a BAR Topnotcher? or he bought his title? San Miguel Corporation is funding Grace Poe of her foolish and illegal ambitions and this means so much money is at stake. A credible news has also circulated about the attempt of bribing the SC Justices just to quash the COMELEC Decision. Is there anybody who would believe GP will appeal in SC with her own money? SG Hilbay….how much did GP gave you to act in favor of her? The MONEY CERTAINLY INVOLVES MILLIONS OF PESOS!

  13. Malaki talaga ang posibilidad na natural born filipino si Sen Grace Poe. Isipin na lang natin hindi naman niya ipaglalaban ang kanyang kandidatura kung hindi siya nagsasabi ng totoo dahil aminin na natin sa lahat ng kandidato isa siya sa deserving at matino.

    • madaling magsabi na si grace poe ay deserving at matino – bakit ipaliwanag mo – dahil ba sa tulong ng san miguel?