The Bureau of Immigration (BI) has denied the request of Australian missionary Sister Patricia Fox for an extension of her missionary visa.
In a two-page order signed on Thursday, Fox’s request for extension was denied by the BI citing the deportation order previously issued against her.
“The BI already saw that Sister Fox violated the conditions of her stay and is considered undesirable, hence a deportation order was previously issued against her,” said BI spokesperson Dana Krizia Sandoval.
“Our legal team saw that approving the extension of her missionary visa will be inconsistent with the findings cited in her deportation order,” she added.
The BI said that Fox already spent 27 years in the country as a missionary and according to the memorandum of agreement between the BI and the Catholic Bishop’s Conference of the Philippines, foreign missionaries should stay in the country for only 10 years.
Fox would be required then to apply for the downgrading of her visa within 15 days from receipt of the denial order. Downgrading will revert her status to a temporary visitor’s visa, with a 59-day validity, starting from the date of the expiry of her missionary visa, said Sandoval.
Fox has a pending appeal before the Department of Justice (DOJ) on her deportation. Sandoval said that the BI “still needs to wait for the decision before acting on the deportation.”
The BI said they may grant Fox the Temporary Visitor’s Visa upon downgrading, without prejudice to the resolution of her appeal to the DOJ on her deportation.