Radio commentator Rizalito David has asked the Senate Electoral Tribunal to subpoena Sen. Grace Poe’s birth and travel documents, which he said would be vital in proving his claim that she was not qualified to take a Senate seat.
David earlier this month filed a quo warranto petition with the electoral tribunal seeking to disqualify Poe from office on the ground that she has not met citizenship requirements of the Constitution.
In a motion filed Tuesday afternoon, he noted that it is “in the higher interest of justice” to compel the Bureau of Immigration and the Philippine Statistics Authority (formerly the National Statistics Office) to bring to the tribunal certified copies of Poe’s records.
In an interview with reporters, David said the official records would form part of contentions in the petition for quo warranto when they argue the case.
He also alleged that the last time Poe used an American passport was in December 2009.
“But then, supposedly, she is already a Filipino citizen in 2006… Why is she using an American passport up to 2009?” David said, alleging that Poe secured a Philippine passport only in 2014.
“So these are material manifestations of whether you are legally a Filipino citizen because we are still of the position that up to this time… she is stateless,” he added.
“I think whichever way it [the case at the electoral tribunal]goes, if it is in her favor or in favor of our petition, it will reach the Supreme Court. This is something important to our history because this is the first time that a foundling, not to denigrate her… may become President of the Philippines. And we may also have a first family whose members are American citizens. This seems like a first in history so we need to look into it carefully,” David said.
Poe–the pre-election survey frontrunner in both presidential and vice presidential preferences–has not made any announcement about her plans for next year’s elections.
David–who unsuccessfully vied for a Senate seat in the 2013 elections and had worked for the Liberal Party and for at least two lawmakers in the past — insisted that no one was behind his filing of a disqualification case against Poe.
“This is a noble act… I don’t need somebody else to push me to do this. I did this on my own,” he said.