Did Yasay run for Philippine VP as an American?
MANILA, Philippines – With no "explicit documentation" that he was not an American citizen, Perfecto Yasay Jr ran for public office in 2001 and 2010 when foreigners are banned from doing so.
Yasay recently said he renounced his American citizenship at the US embassy here on June 28, 2016 after he found the need for "explicit documentation" before taking office as foreign secretary on June 30 of the same year.
In an interview with ANC's Karen Davila on Monday, March 6, Yasay said he needed this because of "rumors and accusations" that he was an American.
He told ANC he previously relied on "implicit evidence" that he was not a US citizen.
Yasay ran for senator in 2001, and for vice president in 2010, without explicit documentation – even as the law bans foreigners from running for public office.
In November 2009, Yasay even swore in his certificate of candidacy (COC) for vice president that he is "not a permanent resident of, or immigrant to, a foreign country." If he was a US citizen and declared this under oath, Yasay could be liable for perjury, Commission on Elections (Comelec) Chairman Andres Bautista earlier told Rappler.
Before this, Yasay joined the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) under the same circumstances as associate commissioner in 1993, and chaired it from 1995 to 2000.
"In June of 2016, before I took my oath of office, in the face of all of these rumors and accusations that I am an American, I did not have an explicit documentation to show that I was not an American, other than the implicit evidence that I had showing that I was not an American," Yasay said.
'Tacit acceptance, admission' of US
Yasay stressed that while the US granted him American citizenship in November 1986, he executed an affidavit 7 years later, in February 1993, to say that he was "disqualified" from having US citizenship.
He said he was "ineligible" because he abandoned his US residency in 1987, or shortly after he was granted American citizenship. He said that this made him "disqualified from being an American citizen." (READ: TIMELINE: When Foreign Secretary Yasay was a foreigner)
Eventually, also in 1993 when he filed his affidavit, Yasay said the US granted him a tourist visa. He said the US extended the validity of this tourist visa in 2005, then again in 2010.
"And this is a tacit acceptance and admission on the part of the US government that in fact, I did not acquire validly US citizenship," he said.
On Monday, Yasay also admitted he used to own a US passport but already returned it.
The question is why the US on June 28, 2016, two days before Yasay formally joined the Duterte Cabinet, issued him a Certificate of Loss of Nationality of the United States.
The certificate, published by the Philippine Daily Inquirer, stated that Yasay "formally renounced his US citizenship before a consular officer at US Embassy Manila, Philippines," even as he attached to it his February 1993 affidavit.
Explaining why he filled up such a "renunciation and relinquishment form" while he claims he was not a citizen, Yasay said, "Because that was the only form available to them." – Rappler.com
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