Hontiveros welcomes divorce bill's progress at House: 'Sana all!'Sen. Risa Hontiveros | PHOTO: Bibo Nueva España/Senate PRIB

Manila, Philippines — Senator Risa Hontiveros gladly received news on the divorce bill’s progress at the House of Representatives.

“Sana (I hope) all!” she said, reacting to House lawmakers’ approval of House Bill (HB) No. 9348, or the proposed Absolute Divorce Act, on the second reading on Wednesday.Hontiveros then vowed “to continue to work in the Senate to pass [the] necessary though contentious legislation, despite the challenges we face.”

“Panahon na [para] bigyan ng second chance sa pag-ibig at buhay ang mga Pilipinong babae, lalaki, bata, at pamilyang nangangailangan nito,” the chair of the Senate committee on women told reporters in a message on Thursday.

(It’s time to give Filipino women, men, children, and families who need it a second chance at love and life.)

Hontiveros said she’s just waiting for her bill sponsorship to be put on the agenda at the Senate plenary.

“I do hope my colleagues can support this important measure,” she added.

Under HB No. 9349, the following are considered grounds for absolute divorce:

  • Physical violence or grossly abusive conduct directed against the petitioner, a common child, or a child of the petitioner
  • Physical violence or moral pressure to compel the petitioner to change religious or political affiliation
  • Attempt of respondent to corrupt or induce the petitioner, a common child, or a child of the petitioner, to engage in prostitution, or connivance in such corruption or inducement
  • Final judgment sentencing the respondent to imprisonment of more than six  years, even if pardoned
  • Drug addiction or habitual alcoholism or chronic gambling of the respondent
  • Homosexuality of the respondent
  • Contracting by the respondent of a subsequent bigamous marriage, whether in the Philippines or abroad
  • Marital infidelity or perversion or having a child with another person other than one’s spouse during the marriage, except when upon the mutual agreement of the spouses, a child is born to them through in vitro fertilization or a similar procedure or when the wife bears a child after being a victim of rape
  • Attempt by the respondent against the life of the petitioner, a common child or a child of the petitioner
  • Abandonment of petitioner by respondent without justifiable cause for more than one year.
  • When the spouses are legally separated by judicial decree for more than two years, either spouse can petition the proper Family Court for an absolute divorce based on said judicial decree of legal separation