Citing the law, Robredo insists Locsin can’t just revoke diplomatic passports

/ 07:39 PM June 25, 2019
Citing the law, Robredo insists Locsin can’t just revoke diplomatic passports

Vice President Leni Robredo. OVP photo

MANILA, Philippines — Vice President Leni Robredo asserted Tuesday that Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) Secretary Teodoro Locsin Jr. cannot just revoke diplomatic passports issued to the nation’s former diplomats because a law prevents him from doing so.

Robredo, who is a lawyer by profession, cited Section 8(b) of Republic Act 8239 or the Philippine Passport Act, which, she stressed, provides concrete grounds for the cancellation of diplomatic passports. She said none of those reasons was applicable to former DFA chief Albert del Rosario’s case.


Robredo, a duly-elected official of the country, was at the receiving end of a tongue-lashing by Locsin, a presidential appointee, over issues on the revocation of diplomatic passports given to former DFA officials.

“Nakalagay ano ba iyong basis ng cancellation, 1, 2, 3. Iyong number one […] kung convicted ka of a criminal offense, kung considered kang fugitive from justice, o number three, kung fraudulent iyong acquisition mo ng passport o tampered ito,” she told reporters in Naga City.


“Kinansel iyong mga (diplomatic) passports, ‘di ba, ano iyong basis ng cancellation? Wala yata sa 1, 2, 3 na iyon,” she added.

After Del Rosario was denied entry to Hong Kong last June 21, Locsin said they will revoke all diplomatic passports issued to ex-diplomats to prevent holders from abusing it.

READ: Ex-Foreign Secretary Del Rosario held, questioned at Hong Kong airport

READ: DFA to cancel diplomatic passports after ex-chief’s HK detention

Robredo consequently said DFA should reconsider its move, but Locsin called her “boba” (stupid) arguing that the reason for revoking all diplomatic passports given to former foreign affairs officials was precisely to avoid singling out Del Rosario,

The DFA chief even urged that someone “give her (Robredo) a brain.”

READ: Locsin calls Robredo ‘boba’ and asks someone to ‘give her a brain’


Locsin, however, eventually apologized to Robredo.

But Robredo just shrugged off Locsin’s invectives, saying there are more pressing issues to talk about like the fate of the 22 fishermen involved in the Recto Bank incident.

READ: Robredo: Fate of 22 fishermen more important than criticisms, Locsin’s tirades

Robredo, meanwhile, explained that her reaction to the issue was based on R.A. 8239.

“Ito iyong listahan ng mga tao na entitled sa diplomatic passports […] President and all former presidents. Number two, Vice President and all former vice presidents. Parang, number six yata, kung hindi ako nagkakamali, nakalagay ambassadors,” she noted.

“Doon sa ambassadors, sa Section 3(g), nakalagay sino ba iyong kino-consider na ambassador. Ang sinasabi niya, ang ambassadors, ang kinokonsiderang ambassadors, iyong lahat na na-appoint at lahat na nagsilbi as ambassadors, extraordinary plenipotentiary,” she added. (Editor: Katherine G. Adraneda)

Read Next
Don't miss out on the latest news and information.
View comments

Subscribe to INQUIRER PLUS to get access to The Philippine Daily Inquirer & other 70+ titles, share up to 5 gadgets, listen to the news, download as early as 4am & share articles on social media. Call 896 6000.

TAGS: DFA, diplomatic passport, Leni Robredo, Local news, Nation, national news, news, Passport, Philippine news updates, Philippine Passport Act, Republic Act 8239, Teddy Locsin Jr.
For feedback, complaints, or inquiries, contact us.

© Copyright 1997-2020 INQUIRER.net | All Rights Reserved

We use cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website. By continuing, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. To find out more, please click this link.