Foreign Affairs Secretary Perfecto Yasay Jr. has been accused of being a US citizen, something that he denied, but the US government released a notice on February 9 listing American citizens “who lost citizenship.” Yasay was one of them.
The US Internal Revenue Services (IRS) released the “Quarterly Publication of Individuals, Who Have Chosen to Expatriate, as Required by Section 6039G” and it listed a certain “Perfecto Rivas Yasay Jr.” as a former American citizen.
The list enumerated the names of people “losing United States citizenship,” as of December 31, 2016.
However, it did not specify when Yasay chose to expatriate.
Rappler’s Newsbreak team tried to ask for Yasay’s side of the story, but he could not be reached, as of the morning of the report’s publication on February 10.
On top of the notice from the US government listing Yasay as an ex-American citizen, Rappler also reported that Yasay’s former US citizenship was confirmed by four independent sources.
Rappler talked to two US government sources, who asked to remain anonymous due to American privacy laws, confirmed Yasay really used to have an American citizenship.
Two other sources based in the Philippines also attested to Yasay owning a US passport with No. 1211902, which were used from 2007 to 2009, according to Rappler.
However, in November 2016, Yasay firmly denied that he had never been a US citizen.
“I am a Filipino, I have always been a Filipino, and I have never been a US citizen. I continue to be a Filipino, so that’s the end of the story,” Yasay said.
Did he own a US passport then? “I did not own a US passport, all right?”
Rappler even uploaded a video of Yasay’s denial of his American citizenship.
Rappler noted how the Philippine Citizenship and Re-acquisition Act of 2003 (RA 9225) said that citizens of another country cannot serve as public officials.
While Yasay may have renounced his US citizenship before taking office on June 30, 2016 under the Duterte administration, there is still the fact that he denied being an American citizen when recent US documents showed that he used to be one.
Rappler pointed out how the Commission on Appointments assess presidential appointees not only on their “competence and fitness” but also on their “integrity.”
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