No papers yet seeking Brownlee, Oliver naturalization says Tolentino

Ginebra imported Justin Brownlee.  PBA . IMAGES

Justin Brownlee can’t wait to join the red-white-blue PH and represent. —PBA Pictures

MANILA, Philippines – Justin Brownlee is committed to helping Gilas Pilipinas. Now if only someone could get his naturalization going.

Senator Francis Tolentino said that Brownlee, along with TNT booster Cameron Oliver — another American are interested in restarting the national nesting program—Have not submitted their application to become a naturalized Filipino.

“We heard about Justin Brownlee, naturalized… Cam Oliver [also] … Lo and hey – we at the Judiciary Committee, we are ready to conduct a hearing – but nothing has been submitted,” Tolentino said during the deliberation of the proposed budget for the Sports Committee. Philippines sports last Monday.

“Not a single page can help, that will trigger the naturalization process. I have here a checklist of requirements for naturalization — not even a letter of intent, not even a (National Bureau of Investigation), police permission, permission barangay’s permission. So how can we get started? ” he added.

Pressed for comment, the president of Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas, Al S. Panilio, said in a message to the Inquirer that “[w]I am promoting naturalization. We are in the process of finalizing all the necessary paperwork.”

SBP, in a meeting held on September 12, seek the support of the Senate and Congress in an effort to naturalize Brownlee and Oliver for future Gilas campaigns.
Panlilio, along with program director and head coach Chot Reyes, say two American players are in the spotlight as part of a naturalized lineup to support Gilas, if possible, as early as May. 11.

Jordan Clarkson is a naturalized player of the Philippines in the final window of the Fiba World Cup Asia Qualifiers, which Gilas is using to prepare for its global showcase here next year.

The Philippines will resume construction next month. The Nationals are gearing up for games against Jordan and Saudi Arabia without Clarkson, who will be deep in his duties with his NBA club Utah Jazz at the time.

That makes Ange Kouame, Ateneo’s centerpiece and UAAP’s current Most Valuable Player, the only available replacement for Clarkson.

SBP has said that Brownlee has completed his documentation requirements, while Oliver has begun work on him.

However, Monday’s developments seem to refute that.

PBA Chairman Ricky Vargas, who was present at the session, said he was unaware that no applications had been made and apologized to Senator Tolentino, who heads a committee that handles naturalization bills.

“And we apologize that we talked about it in the press. We apologize for that. We will match you, Senator,” said Vargas, a former vice president of SBP.
Sonny Barrios, SBP’s chief executive and spokesperson for all things World Cup, also regretted it, vowing to dig into the matter and finally start the process.

“In practice last Monday, team manager Butch Antonio spoke to Justin Brownlee, who said he has yet to be asked to submit,” he said.

“Between then and now, we are in the process of collecting those documents. I will remind… Mr. Butch, team manager, submit to you whatever they have so far. “
It remains to be seen how quickly the legislative process will proceed. The naturalization of Marcus Douthit, Andray Blatche and Kouame all took months.

“The Senate Committee on Judiciary will facilitate the hearing and I cannot proceed without the papers,” Tolentino said. “If you’re still really serious about pursuing that, we should expect the papers this month or earlier so that by November we’re done, God willing.”

“We are here to expedite (the process),” said Senator Bong Go, who chairs the Sports Committee.


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