Dual citizenship applicants will have a mass oath-taking on Oct. 8

dual c “To me, the issue is not about choosing one country over another or having a piece of paper defining who I am. It is about (not) taking our opportunities for granted.”

With that, Rachelle Ocampo, project director at NYU Langone Medical Center, took the plunge, applied for dual citizenship and is now the holder of an American and a Philippine passport.

On October 8, Rachelle and fellow youth leader Edward Santos will be hosting a mass swearing-in of all dual citizenship applicants this past year. The ceremony will be held at the Philippine Center with Consul General Mario de Leon leading the recitation of the Oath of Allegiance. Rachelle and Edward were Filipino Youth Leadership Program delegates in 2013. Together with other rising Filipino American leaders, they visited the Philippines and participated in a cultural immersion program.

“I didn’t want others to lose this chance to vote, to own land, to travel, and most importantly for me, a chance to extend these opportunities to my future children,” said Rachelle as she urged young FilAms to consider the advantages of being a dual citizen.

Carol Tanjutco, a lawyer and frequent traveler, said having dual citizenship is advantageous because “you have the option to decide who you want to be when faced by peculiar situations.”
In Beijing or Moscow, for example, she said one is better off carrying a Philippine passport because U.S. passport holders are sometimes subject to greater scrutiny. “Not to mention the higher visa charges,” she added.

American citizens who have reacquired their Filipino citizenship are invited to attend the swearing-in ceremony at 7 p.m. at the Kalayaan Hall of the Philippine Consulate on Fifth Avenue.

“This particular ceremony is a very special occasion for the community because it is a chance for dual citizens to be with their family members, similar to an induction ceremony,” said Rachelle.

Rachelle Ocampo and Edward Santos

Rachelle Ocampo and Edward Santos

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