Labrusca, a US passport holder, drew flak for shouting at an immigration officer after he was allowed to stay in the country for only 30 days.
Tony Labrusca/Instagram
DFA chief wants Fil-Am actor Tony Labrusca deported
Janvic Mateo (The Philippine Star) - January 6, 2019 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines —  Foreign Affairs Secretary Teodoro Locsin Jr. wants Filipino-American actor Tony Labrusca deported for making a scene at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA).

“Just deport him,” Locsin posted on Twitter in reaction to the incident that happened on Thursday.

Labrusca, a US passport holder, drew flak for shouting at an immigration officer after he was allowed to stay in the country for only 30 days.

The actor apologized for the incident, saying he was frustrated and was not aware of the policy that he needed to be with his parents to qualify for a balikbayan stamp.

“It was very upsetting for me. And I’m sorry that I somehow took my frustrations out on the officer. But never did I call anyone stupid, nor an idiot, much less brag about being a celebrity,” Labrusca said.

“I know for a fact that the officer is merely doing her job. My biggest mistake perhaps was letting my emotions get the better of me and again I’m sorry,” he added.

Deportation proceedings are handled by the Bureau of Immigration (BI), which is an attached agency of the Department of Justice.

The BI on Friday warned the actor of the limits of privileges accorded to returning Filipinos.

It said the one-year visa privilege is for former Filipinos and their immediate family members who are traveling with them.

Requirement puzzles Locsin

Meanwhile, Locsin said he is puzzled with a Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) policy requiring the birth certificate for passport renewals.

In a Twitter exchange with an overseas Filipino worker (OFW) who encountered a problem renewing his passport, Locsin questioned why it is necessary for applicants to submit their birth certificates when renewing their passports.

“Isn’t the expired passport sufficient ID? How many times do you have to prove you are what the State declared you are in the expired passports?” he said, directing the question to assistant secretary Elmer Cato.

“Why even need to show birth certificate when he is holding a government-issued passport that’s expired and he wants it renewed,” he added.

Cato, in a series of now-deleted tweets, explained that the birth certificate requirement would allow the department to capture additional data, particularly from those who have yet to obtain an e-passport.

“Fact that they are holding a genuine government document is totally sufficient. What we are trying to do is play catch up with personal data while renewing passports. Can’t do two things at the same time,” replied Locsin.

“Passports are not prima facie evidence. They are conclusive evidence that you are what your passport says. Otherwise you will need to show video of your parents copulating, you gestating in the womb, being delivered and growing up sufficiently to look like you do now,” he added.

Locsin asked those in the conversation to wait for a clear explanation on the requirement.

“(Let’s wait first, maybe) we all don’t know what we are talking about. Let’s wait for the experts to clarify it in simple language because if it is not simply explained then I guarantee you it is bulls**t,” he said.

Locsin suggested to OFWs to keep documents like birth certificates for passport renewals and other things that require them like school enrollments.

He also recommended that passport renewal be entertained as early as two years before expiry for Filipinos working in an inaccessible area, citing the pace of renewal.

Cato said the problem would be addressed by the new passports with 10-year validity.

NINOY AQUINO INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT TONY LABRUSCA
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