PRESIDENT Rodrigo Duterte has expressed opposition to a measure proposing to legalize divorce in the Philippines, Malacañang said Monday, March 19.
"What is the President's position on the divorce bill? He does not want to comment on this but since they (lawmakers) have already voted in the chamber, the President is against divorce," Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque Jr. said in an interview in Nabua, Camarines Sur.
Roque earlier said Duterte will let Congress exercise its independence.
On March 14, the House of Representatives passed on second reading House Bill 7303 titled, "An Act Instituting Absolute Divorce and Dissolution of Mariage in the Philippines."
The measure, if enacted into law, will allow spouses in irremediable failed marriages to secure an absolute divorce decree under limited grounds and well-defined judicial procedures.
The bill aims to "terminate a continuing dysfunction of a long-broken marriage; save the children from the pain, stress and agony consequent to their parents' constant marital clashes; and grant the divorced spouses the right to marry again for another chance to achieve marital bliss."
The President feels sorry for the children should the measure be enacted into law, Roque said.
Roque added that Duterte expressed concern over spouses who will no longer have the right to sue their former partners.
"He (Duterte) said, 'The children will be miserable. And if there will be divorce, the abandoned spouse will no longer have the right to file a complaint after they divorce,'" the presidential spokesman said.
"So that is his position. But at first, he told me, 'Let's not issue comment.' But since you asked and the vote has been done in the chamber, that is his stance," he added. (SunStar Philippines)