MANILA, Nov 9 (Mabuhay) — The Philippines’ ambassador to the United States (US) is expecting changes in the immigration policies under the administration of US President-elect Joe Biden, who defeated President Donald Trump in the recent US elections.
Ambassador Jose Manuel Romualdez noted that more immigrants were deported during the Obama administration that in the four years of Trump’s leadership.
“Sa tingin namin dito, posibleng magkaroon ng ibang patakaran itong polisiya ng Biden administration. Ganunpaman, lahat naman ng immigration policy ay dumadaan sa US Congress,” Romualdez said.
“Tignan natin kung anong nangyari during the Obama administration, mas maraming na-deport kaysa sa past four years ng administration ni President Trump, so hindi natin alam kung ganun din policy na magiging aggressive ang deportation cases.”
Biden, like former US president Barack Obama, is a member of the Democratic party. He was Obama’s running-mate and vice president from 2008 to 2016.
Vice President-elect Kamala Harris, meanwhile, has been vocal about being a daughter to an immigrant couple in the US.
There are some 350,000 Filipinos facing deportation cases in the US, according to Romualdez.
Asked about the impact of Biden’s victory on the Visiting Forces Agreement between the US and the Philippines, Romualdez said it will depend on the decision of the mutual defense board.
“Lahat naman ‘yan nagbabago ‘yan depende sa ating bases board. Meron tayong mutual defense board na nagmi-meet at least every year,” he said.
“Pag-uusapan how we will proceed in the next year and see how we can either continue with the VFA or palitan nating ng something more acceptable to both parties,” he added.
Despite Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte’s tirade against Obama in the past, Romualdez said the Philippine-US ties will remain strong.
“Ang tagal-tagal nang maganda ang relasyon natin dito sa Amerika so walang personalan. Very cordial lagi ang relationship ng mga head of state,” Romualdez said. (MNS)