Divorce in the Philippines has become a major news story over the last few months in the Philippines. It is fair to say that the debate is out there in the public arena and even more important it is being carried by social media, which has forced the mainstay media to report too.
Here are some of those reports that are worth further reading.
The approval of the “partial divorce” bill on third and final reading by the Lower House is getting church leaders worried.
They fear that this measure is a prelude to total divorce which the Catholic Church is opposed to.
House Bill 5907 authored by Reps. Rufus Rodriguez (Independent, Cagayan de Ofro City) , Maximo Rodriguez (Abante Mindanao Partylist), and Magtanggol Gunigundo (Lakas-CMD, Valenzuela City) which was unanimously endorsed by the House Committee on Revision of Laws allows Filipino spouses to remarry if their original partners are able to win a divorce decree from a foreign court.
The bill seeks to amend Executive Order No. 209 (Family Code of the Philippines).
Section 1 of HB 5907 provides that “in case either of the contracting parties has been previously married, the applicant shall be required to furnish, instead of the birth or baptismal certificate required in the last preceding article, the death certificate of the deceased spouse or the judicial decree of the absolute divorce obtained by the alien spouse duly authenticated by the Philippine consul in the country where the decree was obtained, or the judicial decree of annulment or declaration of nullity of his or her previous marriage.”
The Filipino spouse will no longer seek judicial recognition or enforcement of the foreign judicial decree of absolute decree.
Some 203 lawmakers voted to pass the measure with Buhay party-list Rep. Lito Atienza voting against it.
Only one out of the 204 congressmen present in yesterday’s session voted against House Bill 5907 or the bill allowing a Filipino spouse to remarry in case the alien spouse has obtained a decree of absolute divorce from a foreign judicial body.
“Buhay party-list cannot participate in the votation of a serious matter that is the product of an erroneous and capricious system where laws are being passed without proper dissemination or information,” Atienza said.
HB 5907 also provides that the Filipino spouse need not seek judicial recognition or enforcement of the foreign judicial decree of absolute divorce.
Rather, the registration of the foreign spouse’s judicial decree of absolute divorce with the civil registrar will be enough for the Filipino spouse to be issued a marriage license.
Aside from promoting ease of remarriage for Filipino spouses divorced from their partners, the bill also seeks to simplify the process of recognition of a foreign judgment on divorced obtained by the foreign party.
The measure was primarily authored by Reps. Rufus Rodriguez of Cagayan de Oro, Maximo Rodriguez Jr. of ABAMIN party-list, Magtanggol Gunigundo of Valenzuela City, Marlyn Primicias-Agabas of Pangasinan and Leni Robredo of Camarines Sur.
The Philippines does not have a divorce law. — Xianne Arcangel/JDS, GMA News