Party-list Representative Emmi De Jesus and Gabriela spokesman Arlene Brosas believe it is high time that the state give couples in abusive and irreparable marriages the option to divorce.
"Kung may karapatang pumasok sa kontrata ng kasal, dapat kilalanin na may karapatan din lumabas sa kontrata lalo na kung nasasangkot na ang emosyon at safety ng may relasyon sa marriage," De Jesus said.Gabriela explained that the proposed Divorce Bill takes into consideration the rudiments of Filipino culture and the general sentiment of preserving the sanctity of Filipino marriages, which is why the measure provides that divorce be granted only when certain conditions are met.
These conditions include:
- The petitioner has been separated de facto from his or her spouse for at least five years at the time of the filing of the petition and reconciliation is highly improbable;
- The petitioner has been legally separated from the spouse for at least two years at the time of the filing and reconciliation is highly improbable;
- When any of the grounds for legal separation has caused the irreparable breakdown of the marriage;
- When one or both spouses are psychologically incapable to comply with the essential marital obligations; and
- When the spouses suffer from irreconcilable differences that have caused the irreparable breakdown of marriage.
Maviv Millora, Secretary General of Divorce Advocates of the Philippines, also emphasized the hardship that broken families experience due to the absence of a divorce law in the country.
"Nung isang araw, tumawag kaibigan ko, tinutukan siya ng baril ng kanyang asawa, sabi ko anong magagawa ko, go to the police, go to PAO (Public Attorneys Office), o kaya sa Gabriela, pero iniisip niya kahihiyan nya. Anong gagawin natin diyan, ‘till death do us part? Bigyan ninyo kami ng pagkakataon, kailangan din namin kumawala, tulungan nyo naman kami," she said.
"Hindi lang mag-asawa ang biktima, pinakakawawa ang mga bata. Kailangan ba nila lumaki sa magulong sitwasyon ng mga magulang? Nangyayari, tanggap na nila na ganun eh, bumababa ang moralidad natin" she added.
Quimbo said he believes that amending existing laws could already provide relief for suffering couples that a divorce bill may not be necessary.
“Palawigin natin ang mga existing laws para hindi habambuhay ay preso sa relasyong hindi tama. It’s high time we start discussing so that annulment of marriages can be accessible to the poor,” he said.
source: Abs Cbn news