Monday, November 5, 2018

Here’s why Sister Patricia Fox’s deportation and being blacklisted is legal



Sister Patricia Fox, photo from rappler.com
Sister Patricia Fox, a 72-year old Australian nun who fought for her right to stay here in the Philippines lost her battle against the Bureau of Immigration (BI) after the latter issued a 10-page resolution stating that the elderly nun is to be deported and blacklisted.

Biased?

Since then, it has been a never-ending debate against the opposition and the pro-administration on whether Sister Fox was driven out of the country just because she expressed her disgust to the current administration.

Some are even speculating that if Sister Fox did not oppose the government, then she wouldn’t be deported.

More than what meets the eye.

Salvador Panelo, the Presidential Spokesperson & Chief Presidential Legal Counsel explained through his official Facebook page, Office of the Presidential Spokesperson that to say that Sister Fox was compelled to leave under strong protest is misleading and erroneous.
Presidential Spokesperson & Chief Presidential Legal Counsel Salvador Panelo
According to Panelo, Sister fox was given due process of the law. Therefore debunking the claims that it is injustice or “silencing or threatening anyone from exercising the freedom of expression.”

Legal process

In fact, Sister fox underwent a legal process where she was heard. She used all available resources to appeal and extend her stay in the Philippines but the BI upheld the law and denied her appeal. Her visa expired yesterday, November 4.
Sister Patricia Fox, photo from GMA Network
Despite the rallies that she joined being a part of her advocacy to help Filipinos, Panelo said that the good deeds she did will not exempt her from the punishment of the law that is due to her.

This is after publicly mocking the government and even dropping the line that Philippines is under a “Reign of Terror”

Follow the law

In the end, Panelo adviced Sister Fox to follow the law, whether here in the Philippines or elsewhere. He also wished her goodluck in her travels.

This statement is meant to give light to te never ending debate, and may it enlighten the individuals stating otherwise.
Read full post below:

On Sister Patricia Fox

The departure of Sister Patricia Fox is a timely reminder to all foreigners who stay or sojourn in this country that they are not entitled to all the rights and privileges granted to the citizens of the Philippines, including the absolute exercise of political rights inherently exclusive to Filipino citizens, as spelled out in Operations Order No. SBM 2015-025 issued by the Bureau of Immigration (BI), approved by then Secretary of Justice Leila de Lima.


Undeniable is the fact that Sister Fox joined protest rallies. She has publicly acknowledged that joining these activities is part of her advocacy. Her participation therefore violated the conditions of her stay thereby mocking our laws, and abusing the hospitality extended to her by the host country.


To say that Sister Fox is “compelled to leave under strong protest” is, therefore, misleading as it is erroneous. Neither is there “injustice” nor “silencing or threatening anyone from exercising the freedom of expression.” Freedom of expression remains unbridled in this part of the world.


Sister Fox was given due process of law. She underwent a legal process where she was given the opportunity to be heard. She availed of all remedies that she may stay in the Philippines but the BI upheld the law and denied the request for the extension of her visa, which is set to expire tomorrow, November 4.


We wish Sister Fox well in her travel and we thank her for whatever good deeds she has performed during her stay in the country. Such acts however cannot exempt her from the punishment imposed by law as a consequence of her wrongdoing. Dura lex sed lex. The law may be harsh but it is the law and obedience thereto excuses no one from compliance therewith.


Our advice to Sister Fox is to follow the law whether here or elsewhere. Otherwise, the law of cause and effect will operate against her, as it did in this particular instance.


Salvador S. Panelo 


Presidential Spokesperson & Chief Presidential Legal Counsel


Source: Office of the Presidential Spokesperson