House bill OK’d on Brownlee’s citizenship




The Manila Times


THE house of representatives has approved on third and final reading the bill that seeks to grant philippine citizenship to basketball player justin brownlee. The measure, House Bill 6224, hurdled third reading with over 270 lawmakers voting in the affirmative and none in the negative during plenary session on Tuesday. There was one abstention. “This is the House’s humble contribution to the national basketball team’s quest for glory in the FIBA World Cup. Anything is possible if you put your heart or puso into it. Speaking of puso, we commend Justin for his desire in joining Gilas Pilipinas in this path, to represent the Philippines which is his home in this corner of the world,” House Speaker Martin Romualdez said. On Tuesday afternoon, Brownlee paid a courtesy call on Speaker Romualdez at the House. He gave a signed basketball to Romualdez as a token of gratitude during the courtesy visit. A House fact sheet stated that the bill aims to grant Brownlee Philippine citizenship “in recognition of his notable contributions to the Philippines, considering that,” among others stated in the fact sheet, “he has signified his intention to play for the” Philippine national basketball team and also considering that he “has a sincere desire to live in the Philippines as a Filipino citizen.” Rep. Michael Romero of the party-list 1-Pacman has said that Brownlee gave several championships to Barangay Ginebra San Miguel “and secured many, many championships in the PBA.” PBA stands for the Philippine Basketball Association. If the bill is passed into law, Brownlee must take the oath of allegiance to the Philippines. The bill states that upon the oath’s registration with the Bureau of Immigration, the BI shall issue to Brownlee a certificate of naturalization. At the Senate, the Committee on Justice and Human Rights has approved the proposal to grant Philippine citizenship to Brownlee.