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American spy o nahihiyang maging Filipino? Ressa used US passport almost every month in last 14 years – Tiglao

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Award-winning investigative journalist Bobi Tiglao is claiming that Rappler CEO Maria Ressa is ashamed of being branded a Filipino that she and her allies outside the Philippines have tried to obscure her nationality.

In a Manila Times column, Tiglao said Ressa has exclusively used her American passport (she became a US citizen in 1973 and acquired dual citizenship in 2004) 350 times since 2005.

“Ressa considers herself an American, and has been ashamed to claim to be identified as a Filipino when traveling abroad. Except once when she tried out her new Philippine passport issued under the dual citizenship law in 2004, Ressa has always used her US passports, four so far since the first was issued in the 1970s (US passports have 10-year validity),” said Tiglao.

“With such frequency of travel, leaving the country almost every month, either Ressa has a secret job as international correspondent, spy – or so homesick of America she visits it so often. (I wonder if she charged her trips to Rappler),” he added.

Tiglao said Western foundations have “struggled to hide her nationality” noting that Committee to Protect Journalists identified Ressa as “Rappler editor” while other 2018 International Press Freedom awardees addressed as “Vietnamese blogger, Venezuelan reporter, Ukrainian broadcaster, a Sudanese freelancer, a Cameroonian radio correspondent, and a Tibetan documentary filmmaker.”

Tiglao said Ressa has likewise received help to obscure her nationality from her Filipino colleagues.

“The Columbia University functionary, Sheila Coronel, who lobbied for Ressa’s award, and who prides herself on being a top-notch investigative journalist, portrayed Ressa as a Filipina, that she “was born in the Philippines, migrated with her family to the US, and then returned to Manila in the 1980s.” She omitted to mention what would have been a significant information: That she assumed American citizenship in the 1970s and never gave it up,” he said.

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