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'ONE STEP CLOSER' | Congress finally concurs with Senate on Marañon's naturalization bid

Bienve Marañon's naturalization bid is on the move again. PFL (file photo)
By Ivan Saldajeno

MANILA—Just as Ange Kouame has been cleared to become a naturalized Filipino athlete, the ball has rolled again in the case of Bienve Marañon.

The House of Representatives announced on Tuesday night that it will adopt the amendments made by the Senate regarding the legislative bill granting the United City forward Filipino citizenship.

This after some Azkals fans wondered why only Kouame has granted naturalization when his case was pushed at around the same time as Marañon's.

"House concurs with the Senate amendments to HB 8631, granting Philippine citizenship to Bienvenido Morejon Marañon," the Congress said in a short statement.

With this, both legislative chambers can now draft an enrolled bill to be submitted to President Rodrigo Duterte for his final approval.

If Duterte enacts the bill, Marañon will become a naturalized Filipino and will become eligible for the Azkals.

"One step closer. Here we go kababayan," Marañon said.

The Philippine Football Federation hopes that Marañon would still be naturalized in time for the Azkals' FIFA World Cup Qualifiers campaign next month in Suzhou, China, although according to PFF president Nonong Araneta, the chance of it happening is small.

[Related Story: PFF staying 'patient and hopeful' on Marañon's naturalization bid]

Follow him on Twitter: @IvanSaldajeno

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