Sorsogon SP declares American celeb blogger persona non grata

LEGAZPI CITY— The Sangguniang Panlalawigan of Sorsogon has declared international blogger Nathan Allen, a citizen of the United States, as persona non grata as an expression of protest for the remarks he made against the Donsol tourism office in his “I Dreamed of This” blog last month.

Nathan Allen
Photo from
Board member Frank Eric Ravanilla filed the resolution declaring Allen persona non grata.

Said resolution was approved by the council during its regular session last week.

Part of Allen’s article read:” “Is the D.O.T. just hiring members of their families who need jobs? I hope not…these people need to ACTUALLY be qualified!”

Allen got mad when he was not readily accommodated by the Donsol tourism personnel upon his arrival in the place.

He visited Donsol town, the world’s Whale Shark Capital, without prior notice to local tourism officials.

Ravanilla said Allen’s blog already got more than 3,000 likes, adding that those potential tourists who read the comment may decide not to come to Donsol anymore.

“We are really bothered by this blog because this may affect the community-based tourism activities in Donsol that are giving jobs and income to small businessmen and marginal stakeholders,” the local legislator said.

The resolution said Allen’s statement in his blog site assailing tourism officials in Donsol for not giving him the reception that he expected is irresponsible and self-serving.

“It is rather surprising — if not ridiculous — that an experienced traveler like Allen, who seems to have gone to many countries visiting tourist destinations and promoting them, would go to Donsol without supplying himself with any information about the place he intends to visit that other tourists normally do when they make a trip to a certain place which is readily accessible in the Internet,” the resolution added.

Ravanilla reminded Allen that if he could not adapt to the local culture, he should at least respect it.
He said the Sorsogon officials were enraged by the US citizen-blogger for maligning the tourism personnel of Donsol town, known for whale shark interaction worldwide.

Ravanilla said they already sent copies of their resolution to the US Embassy, the Sorsogon local government units, Masbate and Albay.(PNA)

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