Philippine sports

Senate approves PH citizenship of Kouame, Marañon

Delfin Dioquino
Senate approves PH citizenship of Kouame, Marañon

NATURALIZED PLAYERS. Angelo Kouame (left) will reinforce Gilas Pilipinas, while Bienvenido Marañon will provide a big boost for the Philippine Azkals.

Photos from UAAP (Kouame) and Philippine Football Federation (Marañon)

Voting 23-0, the Senate passes on the third and final reading of the bills that will grant Angelo Kouame and Bienvenido Marañon Filipino citizenship

Senators approved the bills which will grant Ivorian basketball player Angelo Kouame and Spanish footballer Bienvenido Marañon Filipino citizenship on Monday, March 15.

Voting 23-0, the Senate passed on the third and final reading of House Bill No. 8631 for Marañon and House Bill No. 8632 for Kouame.

“We are excited for them to be naturalized because they have proven that they really want to be Filipinos, but they also have to be exemplary, to be an inspiration to the Filipinos,” said Senator Richard Gordon.

The counterpart versions of the measures, Senate Bill No. 1391 for Marañon and Senate Bill No. 2058, were approved on their second reading last week.

With the passing of the counterpart bills in the House of Representatives last month, both measures will become a law after the President signs them and after their publication in the Official Gazette or in a newspaper of general circulation.

The 6-foot-10 Kouame, 23, is racing against time as he seeks to reinforce Gilas Pilipinas in its international tournaments in the middle of the year.

Gilas Pilipinas is slated to play in the FIBA Asia Cup 2021 Qualifiers and the FIBA Olympic Qualifying Tournament – both in June.

“Kouame is primed to make a significant contribution to Philippine basketball,” said Senator Sonny Angara.

“He is ready to play for the national team. More importantly, he is more than willing to represent our country.”

Marañon, meanwhile, is expected to give the Philippines Azkals a huge boost after starring for the Ceres Negros Football Club in the Philippine Football League. –

Delfin Dioquino

Delfin Dioquino dreamt of being a PBA player, but he did not have the skills to make it. So he pursued the next best thing to being an athlete – to write about them. He took up journalism at the University of Santo Tomas and joined Rappler as soon as he graduated in 2017.