ABS-CBN Broadcasting Corp. president Carlo Katigbak has denied speculation that his uncle, Gabby Lopez, was an American citizen.
“Sa pagkakaalam ko po is Gabby Lopez is Filipino, tatay po niya ay Filipino at meron pa siyang Filipino passport,” said Katigbak in a Senate hearing.
ABS-CBN legal counsel Mario Bautista “categorically” stated that Lopez was a Filipino citizen and that he would provide documentary evidence to the Senate to prove this claim.
The issue was raised by Senator Bato dela Rosa citing a report by former Cabinet Secretary Rigoberto Tiglao who claimed that Lopez “travels the world using his American passport, the current one issued by the Los Angeles Passport Agency.”
Tiglao claimed that Lopez acquired Philippine citizenship only in 2004, a year after the Dual Citizenship Law took effect.
Tiglao said this meant “ABS-CBN violated the Constitution for 18 years, from 1986 to 2004, when Lopez was in its top management and one of its six biggest individual stockholders yet had solely US citizenship.”