Press Release
February 17, 2016


As the Supreme Court closed oral arguments on her cases Tuesday night, leading presidential candidate Sen. Grace Poe expressed confidence that the highest court of the land would render judgment that will not be discriminatory to foundlings like her.

Poe, whose name is included in the 57 million ballots being printed for the May 9 elections, said she hopes not just to put all legal hurdles behind her but also to set a precedent for all abandoned children who may want to enter public service someday.

"Kumpiyansa naman kami dahil naging positive ang argument. Mismo si Chief Justice Sereno nagsabi na may karapatan ang mga nadampot. Si SolGen Hilbay ay nagsabi na ako raw ay natural-born and ang residency requirement ay natugunan. He has higher responsibility for what is right and what will affect the majority of the countrymen," Poe said in a press briefing in Roxas City in Capiz.

Chief Justice Lourdes Sereno asked all petitioners and Poe's legal camp to submit their final memoranda within five days. The deadline will not be extended, she said.

Poe, whose run for the presidency is being challenged by her opponents through several disqualification cases, reiterated that the strength of her case does not depend on finding a DNA match to prove that she is a natural-born Filipino.

Poe is the first foundling to run for president of the Philippines. She was found at the holy water font of the Jaro Church in 1968 by Edgardo Militar, whose family raised her until she was adopted by movie icons Fernando Poe Jr. and Susan Roces.

The Supreme Court started hearing oral arguments on Poe's case on January 19, dedicating a half-day a week to the controversial cases that center on whether Poe has met the citizenship and residency requirements for presidential candidates.

"Ako ay naniniwala na malakas ang kasong ito. Kaya sila ay nag-iimbento ng mga storya na ganiyan," Poe said when asked during a press briefing in Iloilo about reports that someone from her campaign was exerting pressure on the Supreme Court.

"Kahit nga ang pangulo ay hindi naimpluwensiyahan ang SC. Nakita naman natin ang appointed ng ating pangulo diyan at siya ay nakaupong pangulo, pero hindi naman lahat ng kanilang naisampang kaso ay nadesisyunan pabor sa kanila. Kami pa kaya? Alam naman natin na ang mga taong ito ay meron namang kredibilidad na pinangangalagaan din," Poe said of the Supreme Court justices.

Poe assured the public that while her team will exhaust all legal remedies available to defend the rights of all foundlings, she will respect the decision of the Supreme Court.

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