‘Sister Pat’ to appeal deportation order

Australian Roman Catholic nun Sr. Patricia Fox (center) is greeted by fellow nuns as she arrives at the Justice Department to file a petition seeking to review a Bureau of Immigration order revoking her missionary visa in the Philippines, in this May 25 photo. AP

MANILA – Australian nun Patricia Fox plans to appeal before the Department of Justice the new deportation order released by the Bureau of Immigration (BI) against her.

In an interview yesterday, Fox said she will face and fight the deportation in all avenues.

Her lawyers are exhausting all the remedies available to reverse the deportation order, she added.

“Well of course I’m disappointed, but that’s the order. We’ll look at what we can do about it,” Fox said.

Fox’s lawyer Maria Sol Taule described the new deportation order as a form of persecution toward the Australian nun who has been doing missionary work in the country the past 27 years.

“We are utterly dismayed by the resolution ordering the deportation of Sr. Patricia Fox and placing her name in the watchlist,” Taule said. “There is no basis to say that she is an undesirable alien, unless their definition of undesirability is helping the poor.”

The BI, in a resolution dated July 19, said Fox has to be deported for violating the limitations and conditions of her missionary visa by allegedly joining “political activities.”

Fox’s name was also included in the bureau’s blacklist.

“These activities are evidently beyond the ‘nature’ of authorized duties and responsibilities for which she was assigned as a missionary worker as represented by her congregation and approved by the bureau,” the BI said.

On April 16, Fox was apprehended by BI operatives pursuant to a mission order issued by Commissioner Jaime Morente.

Fox has filed a petition on May 25 before the DOJ seeking for the reversal of BI’s May 17 leave order forfeiting her missionary visa due to allegations of violating the conditions of her stay and gave her a temporary visitor’s visa lasting only 30 days.

The BI has dismissed Fox’s arguments that they forfeited her visa without due process and that allegations that she engaged in political activities were not backed with solid evidence.

On June 18, the DOJ nullified BI’s order, noting that the missionary visa forfeiture was “without legal basis” and outside BI’s power./PN


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