The bills that will grant Ateneo's Ivorian basketball star Angelo Kouame's and Spanish United City FC striker Bienvenido Marañon's Filipino citizenships are set to be sponsored by the House Plenary on Monday, February 8.
This comes after the House Committee on Justice formally approved the committee report on Thursday, February 4.
After the bills gain House Plenary sponsorship, they will go through a 2nd reading, then 3rd and final reading in order to hurdle the lower chamber.
Last December 2, the panel voted to approve House Bill (HB) No. 5951 that will grant Kouame's naturalization and HB No. 7427 which was written for Marañon.
Kouame's bill was filed by Antipolo 1st District Representative and Deputy Speaker Roberto “Robbie” Puno, while Manila 1st district Representative Manny Lopez authored Marañon's bill last August 19.
On the Senate side, Sonny Angara led the filing of Senate Bill (SB) No. 1892 for Kouame and was able to gain the endorsement of upper house.
For Marañon, Senator Juan Miguel Zubiri filed SB No. 1391 with the hopes of seeing the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) Cup record goal scorer representing the Philippine Azkals.
Both players have led their respective teams to dominant championships.
Towering at 6-foot-10, Kouame averaged 12.5 points, 11.8 rebounds, 2.9 blocks and 1.4 assists in UAAP Season 82, which was vital to Ateno’s 16-0 sweep and three-peat title romp.
After leading Ceres-Negros FC to become Southeast Asia's top football squad and 3 Philippines Football League (PFL) championships, Marañon re-signed with the club that has rebranded to United City FC.
United City clinched its maiden PFL title under the new name and is set to become the first Filipino club to see action in the AFC Champions League group stage. – Rappler.com
More commonly known as “Bee”, Beatrice is a multimedia sports reporter for Rappler, who covers Phillippine sports governance, national teams, football and the UAAP. Stay tuned for her news and features on Philippine sports and videos like the Rappler Athlete’s Corner and Rappler Sports Timeout.