June 3, 2015
GRACE'S RESIDENCY ISSUE: TALK ABOUT DÉJÀ VU, CHIZ SAYS
"The issues hurled at Senator Grace Poe are deja vu. It has already been seen in 2004, when the same issues were thrown at her father, the late Fernando Poe Jr. or FPJ when he ran for president. Hindi na siguro nakakagulat yun. Pero nakakalungkot na yung ginawa sa ama, ginagawa at gagawin din sa anak," Senator Chiz Escudero today said.
The senator, who was the campaign spokesman of FPJ in 2004, came to the defense of Senator Grace Poe who is bombarded with residency and citizenship issues for the 2016 elections. Poe is yet to confirm her candidacy but is considered one of the stronger contenders for president for the 2016 polls.
Escudero also pointed that it was only last month when the camp of Vice President Jejomar Binay expressed preference for Poe as his running mate in the 2016 elections, however, "Pumirma lang siya sa committee report, tinanggihan lang siya at hindi kinakausap, biglang disqualified naman ngayon," the senator from Sorsogon said.
"Para sa akin, ano bang pinaghuhugutan ni Cong. Toby Tiangco. Of all people, dapat alam niya. Dahil auntie niya mismo, kapatid ng biyenan niya, eksaktong ganito ang nangyari," Escudero said, pertaining to the case of former first lady and current representative of the 2nd district of Ilocos Norte, Cong. Imelda Marcos.
Marcos ran for representative of the first district of Leyte in 1995 and wrote in her Certificate of Candidacy (COC) that she has been a resident of Leyte for only seven months when the requirement was one year.
Escudero said that according to the Supreme Court, it is the fact of residence and not the statements made in the COC that will form the basis whether a person or a candidate is a resident of a certain place or not.
"Alam naman siguro nila yan. Alam ko at tiyak ko kung nag-research talaga sila, malalaman din nila yan," said Escudero.
He also recalled that since FPJ died December 2004, Poe then decided to stay and reside in the country. If and when Poe decided to run for president, according to Escudero, it will not be difficult to prove her residency in the country.
Escudero added that not only the animus revertendi or the intent to return is applicable to Poe's case, but also the actual physical residence in the country. The doctrine has been used by the Supreme Court as a basis to decide in several election-related cases.
"So, pagsamahin mo ang dalawang yon, sobra pa yun at dagdag pa yun sa sitwasyon ng ibang tao. Marami nga at may ilang kongresista diyan ang tinitirhan nilang bahay ay iba sa tinatakbuhan o kinakatawan nilang lugar. So sana maghunus-dili ika nga at manalamin ang ilan sa mga nagsasalita," Escudero said.
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