Grace Poe lacks residency, not qualified to run for president or VP – solon
SENATOR Grace Poe is not qualified to run as president or vice president in 2016 because of lack of residency in the country, an opposition congressman said Tuesday.
This is the latest of questions raised against Poe’s qualifications to run as president or vice president in 2016, following her popularity in the pre-election opinion poll. Her citizenship issue had also been raised, though Poe has said she has given up her dual citizenship and she is now a Filipino citizen.
In a press conference, Navotas Rep. Toby Tiangco, interim president for Vice President Jejomar Binay’s United Nationalist Alliance, said Poe’s certificate of candidacy for senator in 2013 shows her residency in the country is at six years and six months prior to the May 2013 elections.
By May 2016, Poe will have stayed in the country for nine years and six months, still short of the 10-year residency requirement in the Constitution for president and vice president bets prior to the elections, Tiangco added.
“Maliwanag sa Saligang Batas, sampung taon. Kung mahalaga sa kanya katapatan, bakit hindi niya tapatin na di siya qualified in 2016?” Tiangco said.
Tiangco said he bared Poe’s period of residency following her statement that Vice President Binay can prove his honesty if he answers the corruption allegations hurled against him over the purportedly overpriced Makati Parking Building, Hacienda Binay, among others.
Poe became a target of criticisms after she fared high in presidential and vice presidential surveys.
In the latest Social Weather Stations (SWS) presidential survey, Poe saw her ranking improved from 21 percent to 31 percent, just five percentage points shy from Vice President Binay (36 percent from 37 percent) who remained in the lead. Liberal Party’s presumptive bet Interior Secretary Mar Roxas got a measly 15 percent of respondents, down from 19 percent.
Meanwhile, in the latest SWS vice presidential survey, Poe is the top pick with 26 percent of respondents, surpassing Roxas with 12 percent and Binay with seven percent.
“Ang sinasabi lang natin dito, sa ngayon, hindi siya kwalipikado sa 2016. Maaaring sa 2022 (next presidential elections), kwalipikado na siya. Kung ang pinag-uusapan ay honesty, bakit hindi niya ipagtapat sa taumbayan na hindi siya qualified?” Tiangco said.
“Hindi ko naman ilalabas ito kung hindi niya pinilit ‘yung isyu ng honesty. She claims to be honest. So let us bring back the question of honesty. Kung sinasabi niyang mahalaga ang honesty… bakit hindi siya nagiging tapat sa atin na hindi siya kwalipikado?” Tiangco added.
He showed the certificate of candidacy showing her residency in the country filed before the Commission on Elections.
Tiangco said Binay did not give him the go-signal to reveal Poe’s residency, adding that he told reporters of the issue on his own volition.
“Vice President is very polite. Yan ang problema sa boss ko. Nakapabait ni Binay. Nung sinabi ko sa kanya (Poe’s residency period), sabi niya pabayaan na lang manggaling sa iba, huwag na sa atin… Itinuturing niyang kaibigan si Grace Poe,” Tiangco said.
“Responsibilidad ko naman bilang campaign manager na ipagtanggol ang aking principal. Kung siya ay ayaw magsalita, ako ang magsasalita,” he added.
Asked if he would question Poe’s qualifications before the Supreme Court if she decides to run, Tiangco said he would but in his personal capacity.
“If I am stopped by my party, I will be able to decide whether I’ll follow it or leave my party,” Tiangco said.
When asked if he would call on Poe to forgo her ambition to run for a higher position, Tiangco said: “I’m not asking her to back off. But since she put forward the question of honesty, bakit naman hindi niya pinaalam sa ating lahat na hindi naman siya pwede sa 2016?”
Binay has said that he was willing to consider Poe as his vice president come 2016, but he later said he was hurt by Poe’s statements that she never opened the door as Binay’s running mate.
The vice president also lamented Poe’s signing of the Senate report recommending plunder charges against him over the allegedly overpriced Makati Parking Building following Senate Blue Ribbon committee hearings on the corruption allegations when Binay was Makati mayor.
Tiangco said UNA is not threatened if Poe would run next year.
“Si Binay lang naman ang may track record na may ginawa para sa kanyang mga kababayan,” Tiangco said. AC
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