ZAMBOANGA CITY: Independent presidential candidate Sen. Grace Poe on Friday challenged her critics, who had accused her of illegally using a bogus Social Security number while residing in the United States to produce evidence that would prove that she committed a felony.
According to Poe, she did not have any Social Security number when she was a student in Boston College since she never sought employment during that time.
Based on a newspaper report that came out recently, she allegedly had two Social Security numbers when she was living in the US.
One was SSN 005-03-1988, which was supposed to have been issued on 1934-1951 in the state of Maine, while the other was SSN 538-25-2008 issued in 1992.
“As a student, I was never employed even in campus that requires a Social Security number,” Poe said.
She added that her critics could even write a letter to her former employers to find out if she indeed used SSN 005-03-1998, which the article alleged belongs to a dead person.
“I don’t know how did they get the number, but SSN 005-03-1988 is my Boston College student ID number. All students enroled were issued a number,” Poe told a news conference.
She said it is also illogical for her to use a pre-owned SSN issued on a year when she was not even born yet and such move can be easily traced by US authorities
As for the SSN 538-25-2008 issued in 1992, Poe added, she was issued that number a year after she earned a degree in political science at the college.
In a bid to further shed light on the matter, Poe said she already sent a formal letter to Boston College requesting that she be furnished a copy of her student ID number.
She admitted that she was saddened by the extent her opponents are willing to go through in an attempt to tarnish her reputation.
“But my reputation is my asset that is why I’m taking it [allegation]personally,” she added.
Poe earlier said she just used one Social Security number with the name Grace Poe Llamanzares.
Poe spokesman, Valenzuela City (Metro Manila) Mayor Rex Gatchalian said their opponents’ desperation has caused them to come up with ridiculous stories that are geared toward confusing the voters and tarnishing the good name of the senator.
He maintained that there is no reason for the Poe to secure a fake Social Security number because she has always been of legal status when she stayed in the US.
“Under-handed tactics such as this has no place in our democracy. The people deserve better, our people deserve to hear advocacies rather than barefaced lies,” Gatchalian said.