Sister Patricia Fox gets a temporary reprieve

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Australian missionary Sister Patricia Fox has claimed a temporary victory over the Department of Justice (DoJ).

It has agreed to extend her stay in the Philippines and review her appeal against an order from the Bureau of Immigration (BI) to forfeit her visa.

Justice Secretary Menardo Guevarra has announced Fox now has until June 18 to leave the country if the Bureau of Immigration’s order is to be implemented.

The 71-year-old nun welcomed the prompt response of Guevarra to the petition for review that she filed before the DoJ on Friday afternoon.

That was the deadline set by the BI after it accused her of participating in “partisan political activities” in the country.

The DoJ’s order gave Fox “a ray of hope” that her case would be fairly reviewed and she prays that the BI’s April 23 order will be reversed and set aside “for utter lack of factual and legal basis,” Fox’s legal counsel Robert Pahilga said.

“This also removes the anxiety and concern that she will be arrested anytime by the agents of the bureau similar to what they did last April 16.”

But Fox and her lawyers are not complacent.

Pahilga said it seems that no less than the most powerful man in the country, President Rodrigo Duterte, wants her out of the country.

“If I do not contest the government’s order, it could become a bad precedent,” Fox told ucanews.com last week.

The Philippines’ immigration bureau revoked Fox’s missionary visa on April 23 for allegedly participating in “partisan political activities.”

It also “deactivated” her alien certificate of registration.

On May 23, the bureau rejected her appeal for it to reinstate her missionary visa.

It had also dismissed Fox’s claims of lack of due process.

Source

News category: Asia Pacific.

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