BI denies Sister Fox’s bid to renew her missionary visa
The Bureau of Immigration (BI) has denied Sister Patricia Fox’s bid to reconsider its earlier decision not to renew her missionary visa.
In a two page order, the BI said Fox’s motion contains “merely a reiteration or rehash of arguments already submitted and found to be without merit.”
The BI added that Fox also “failed to raise any new and substantial arguments.”
The BI’s order was signed by its Board of Commissioners composed of Commissioner Jaime Morente, Deputy Commissioenr J. Tobias Javier and OIC Deputy Commissioner Marc Red Meriñas.
Justice Secretary Menardo Guevarra confirmed the BI’s decision.
“What was denied by the BI was the MR (motion for reconsideration on the) renewal of Fox’s missionary visa,” Guevarra clarified.
“She was directed to downgrade and apply for a temporary visitor’s visa instead which has a validity of up to 59 days,” he added.
Guevarra also said that the BI has also submitted its comment on Fox’s petition for review on the deportation order.
“The matter [petition for review to reverse the deportation order by BI] is now submitted for the DOJ (Department of Justice’s) consideration…It will be decided in due time,” Guevarra said in a text message to reporters.
Last July, the BI ordered Fox’ deportation for violating the conditions of her stay and for being an undesirable alien.
Fox filed a motion for reconsideration but was denied by the BI, prompting her to take her case to the DOJ.
Meanwhile, Fox tried to renew her missionary visa following its expiration last Sept. 5. However, the BI denied the application. The Australian nun filed a motion for reconsideration which was also denied in its recent ruling.
Fox has been accused of violating “the limitations and conditions set under of Commonwealth Act 613, Section 9(g) missionary visa.”
The bureau cited as basis for its order several photographs showing that she engaged in several partisan political activities sometime in 2013, 2016, 2017 and 2018—including those where she reportedly demanded for the release of political prisoners, joined the rallies for land distribution in Hacienda Luisita, and a labor rally in Davao City.
The BI also considered President Rodrigo Duterte’s earlier statements that branded Fox as an undesirable alien by joining political rallies. “In fact, the President even publicly admitted that it was upon his instructions to investigate Fox for disorderly conduct for participating in rallies,” it added. /je
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