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Labo, Jr.

v Comelec
1992 | Bidin, J.
Note: 2
SC ruled on citizen of Ramon Labo, Jr. (Baguio
mayoralty position)

1. Ortega filed a disqualification proceeding after
Labo after the latter filed his COC.
Ground: Labo made a false
representation he stated that he is a
naturan-born citizen of the PH;
Ortega presented SC decision in Labo v
Comelec dated 1989 which declared Labo
not a PH citizen;
2. May 9, Comelec issued a reso cancelling
Labos COC;
Labo: motion to stay implementation
until he has raised the matter to the SC;
3. Comelec issued order: Labo may still be
voted upon as candidate;
Why? Based on Comelec RoP, reso shall
become final and executory only after 5
days from promulgation (5 days after
May 9 already after the May 11
4. May 13, COMELEC resolved to suspend Labos
proclamation in case he wins.
5. Labo then filed a petition for review with the
For the issuance of a TRO to set aside
Comelecs May 9 res
For a declaration that he is a Philippine
citizen; and
For COMELEC to proceed with his
proclamation, in case he wins.
6. Ortega filed an urgent motion to implement the
May 9 reso;
Comelec denied this, in view of the
pending case filed by Labo with the SC;
7. Ortega filed a petition for mandamus with
the SC in line with this.

Issue: W/N Labo should be proclaimed mayor
(because he won). No.

Labo arg: Vance v Terrazas: in proving expatriation, a
expatriating act and intent to relinquish citizenship must
be proved by a preponderance of evidence;
- Neither the immigration nor the Comelec made a
finding as regards his specific intent to renounce
his PH citizenship;
- SC: No. There was no proof Labo reacquired his
PH citizenship; in his answer, he offered no
evidence to show existing facts and supervening
events which preclude the application of the
earlier case; this wasnt re-examined by the SC
because he already pleaded Vance in his MR in
the earlier cse;

Labo arg: Section 72 of the Omnibus Election Code

operates as a legislatively mandated special repatriation

Sec. 72. Effects of disqualification cases and priority. The
Commission and the courts shall give priority to cases of
disqualification by reason of violation of this Act to the end that a final
decision shall be rendered not later than seven days before the
election in which the disqualification is sought.
Any candidate who has been declared by final judgment to
be disqualified shall not be voted for, and the votes cast for him shall
not be counted. Nevertheless, if for any reason, a candidate is not
proceeding, and it allows his proclamation as the winning
candidate since the May 9 reso disqualifying him was not
yet final at the time the election was held;
- SC: no. Section 72 already repealed by Section 6
of RA 6646; Comelec can legally suspend Labos
proclamation, his reception of the winning
number of votes notwithstanding;

Labo arg: he already filed an application for reacquisition
of PH citizenship before the Solicitor General;
- SC: Mere application for repatriation does not
amount to an automatic reacquisition of PH
- CA 63, PH citizenship may be reacquired by:
o Direct act of Congress;
o Naturalization; or
o Repatriation;

- Ortega: Since SC did not issue a TRO against the
May 9 reso, it has already became final and
executory; thus, Labos COC getting cancelled
means he cannot be proclaimed as Baguio City
- SC agrees; under Omnibus Elction Code, after 5
days from receipt of a Comelec decision, it shall
become final and executory (unless stayed by

Section 39
. Qualifications cited
- The fact that Labo was elected by the
majority of the electorate is of no moment;
- The rule requires strict application when the
deficiency is lack of citizenship. If a person seeks
to serve in the RP, he must owe his total loyalty
to this country only, abjuring and renouncing all
fealty and fidelity to any other state (Frivaldo v.

Ortege arg: as a result of the finality of May 9
resolution, the candidate receiving the next highest
number of votes should be declared mayor;
- SC: no;
- Abella v Comelec: .In the event a candidate who
obtains the highest number of votes is
disqualified for not possessing the eligibility
requirements, the candidate who obtains the
second highest number of votes cannot assume
the vacated position;
- A minority or defeated candidate cannot be
deemed elected to the office (Ortega only got
12,602 votes, compared to Labos 27,471 votes);
- Vice-Mayor fills the permanent vacancy, as per
LGC Section 44.
- Old Labo case: It would be repugnant to the
concept of right to suffrage if a candidate who has

declared by final judgment before an election to be disqualified and he
is voted for and receives the winning number of votes in such election,
his violation of the provisions of the preceding sections shall not
prevent his proclamation and assumption to office.
(a) An elective local official must be a citizen of the Philippines;
a registered voter in the barangay, municipality, city, or province or, in
the case of a member of the sangguniang panlalawigan, sangguniang
panlungsod, sangguniang bayan, the district where he intends to be
elected; a resident therein for at least one (1) year immediately
preceding the day of the election; and able to read and write Filipino or
any other local language or dialect.

not acquired the majority of votes is imposed as
the representative of a constituency, the majority
of which have declared through their ballots that
they did not choose him;

The rule would have been different if:
- The electorate, fully aware of Labos
disqualification (so as to bring such awareness
within the realm of notoriety), would nonetheless
cast their votes in his favor;
- In such a case, the electorate may be said to
have waived the validity and efficacy of their
- This is not the case here, so general rule applies.

Petitions Dismissed.

Concurring and Dissenting Gutierrez, Jr
- Labo didnt validly acquired Austrialian
- His taking an oath as citizen of a foreign country
was based on his marriage to an Austrial;
- It turns out Labos marriage was bigamous so it
was void;
- Justice Gutierrez believes that the presumptions
should be in favor of its retention and against its

Panganiban, J.

2 consolidated cases here.
1. For 1995 elections, Frivaldo filed his COC for
Sorsogon Governor;
a. Lee opposed: Frivaldo not yet a PH
citizen; prayed for his COC to be
b. Comelec 2
division, in May 1,
disqualified Frivalo thru a reso;
2. Frivaldos MR not enacted until after election so
he was included in elections;
a. 3 days later, Comelec en banc approved
the reso that hes disqualified;
b. Canvass showed Frivaldo got 73k against
Lees 53k votes;
3. Comelec en banc directed the Board of
Canvassers to proclaim Lee;
a. Lee then was proclaimed (June 30, 8
b. Note that earlier that day (2pm), Frivaldo
took his oath of allegiance as PH citizen
after his petitioner for repatriation which
he filed in September 1994 had been
4. July 6, Frivaldo filed petition with Comelec to
annul Lees proclamation and that he be
proclaimed instead (initiatory petition);
5. Comelec 1
Division issed a reso declaring Lee
not entitled to be proclaimed because he got
lower votes than Frivaldo and Frivaldo is qualified
since he reacquired his Filipino citizenship;
a. Lees MR denied by en banc; certiorari to

Lees arg:
The judicially declared disqualification in the 2
previous cases of Frivaldo was a continuing
condition and rendered him ineligible to run;
The repatriation was neither valid nor is the effect
retroactive as to cure his ineligibility
There was a misapplication of the Labo Doctrine
(explained later in Ratio Issue #4) because if
correctly applied, it would have supported Lee as

Issues: W/N Frivaldo should be proclaimed
Governor of Sorsogon. Yes.


In re: Frivaldos repatriation
requires Philippine citizenship as a
qualification for elective local officials.
o It is incumbent upon him to show that he
has reacquired it.
o Citizenship may be reacquired by direct
act of Congress, naturalization, or

Lee argues that the repatriation was defective:
- Lee: PD 725 was repealed by Cory Aquino
exercising legislative powers (when she forbade
the grant of citizenship by PD or Exec Issuances
because it should be left to the Congress) in her
memorandum to the members of the Special
Committee on Naturalization, when she directed
them to cease from undertaking any proceedings;
- SC: That was only a memo; not all
pronouncements are in the exercise of law-
making powers (at best, it was an executive
o Even so, there was no express repeal
because the memo did not state that PD

Sec. 39. Qualifications. -- (a) An elective local official must be a
citizen of the Philippines; a registered voter in the barangay,
municipality, city, or province or, in the case of a member of the
sangguniang panlalawigan, sangguniang panlungsod, or sangguniang
bayan, the district where he intends to be elected; a resident therein for
at least one (1) year immediately preceding the day of the election; and
able to read and write Filipino or any other local language or dialect.
(b) Candidates for the position of governor, vice governor or member
of the sangguniang panlalawigan, or mayor, vice mayor or member of
the sangguniang panlungsod of highly urbanized cities must be at least
twenty-three (23) years of age on election day.

725 was being repealed. She did not
even mention it;
o Also, repeals by implication are not

- Lee: Serious irregularities in the proceedings
because Frivaldo's application was filed on June
29, 1995 but was approved in June 30 (just 1
day after) ;
- SC: Frivaldo filed his application with the Office of
the President in August 1994;
o However, the Special Committee was
reactivated only on June 8, 1995. On
June 29, he filled up the form;\
o Under these circumstances, it could not
be said that there was indecent haste in
the processing of his application.
- Lee: The sudden reconstitution of the Special
Committee was intended solely for the personal
interest of Frivaldo;
- SC: There were many others (at least 10 more)
who applied and were considered for repatriation,
a list was even submitted
o Presumption of regularity;
o The mere fact that proceedings were
speeded up is not a conclusion that such
were tainted. After all, repatriation
requires little of the applicant since the
applicant is already a former natural-born
Filipino who is merely seeking to
reacquire previous citizenship.

- Lee: Assuming the proceedings were valid, it
could not be applied retroactively because the
citizenship qualification must exist on the date of
his election, citing the previous Frivaldo case that
the LGC & Consti requires: only Phil citizens can
run and be elected to public office.
- SC: That was obiter because the issue in that
case was whether or not Frivaldos naturalization
was valid, not its effective date;
o In this case, we resolve the effective date

Under Sec 39 LGC, an elective official must be:
o A Phil citizen
o A registered voter in the brgy, municipality, city,
or province where he intends to be elected
o Resident for at least 1 yr immediately
preceding election day
o Able to read and write Filipino or any other local
o Gubernatorial candidates must be at least 23 yrs
old on election day

Law does not specify date/time when candidate
must possess citizenship, unlike residence and age;
- Philippine citizenship is an indispensable
requirement for holding an elective public office;
- Purpose: to ensure that no alien (owing allegiance
to another) shall govern our people and our
- An official begins to govern only upon
proclamation and on the day the law mandates
his term to begin;
- Since Frivaldo re-assumed his citizenship on
June 30, he was already qualified to be
proclaimed. At that time, he was already
qualified to govern Sorsogon.
- This is the interpretation that should give spirit to
our law consistent with the purpose.
o Even from a literal construction, Sec
39 speaks of "Qualifications" of
candidates. Therefore, these should
be possessed when the "elective
official" begins to govern.

Lee: Citizenship qualification should be possessed at the
time he registered as a voter because Sec 39 also
requires that he be a "registered voter"; Under the law
"voter" must be a citizen.
- SC SAYS: Look again into the purpose;
- The voter requirement was included as another
qualification so as to require that the official be
registered as a voter IN THE AREA OR TERRITORY
he seeks to govern.
- LGC requires an elective official to be a registered
voter, but not to actually vote. Hence, registration
is the core of this "qualification".
o Frivaldo has always been a registered
voter of Sorsogon. Although his eligibility
as a voter was questioned, court
dismissed this and he even voted in all
previous elections.
- If the law intended the citizenship qualification to
be possessed prior to election, then it would not
have made citizenship a SEPARATE qualification;
- The law abhors a redundancy.

Repatriation retroacted to the date of the filing of
his application (Aug 1994);
- Although the NCC says laws have no retroactive
effect unless provided, there are exceptions:
such as when the statute is curative or
remedial or when it creates new rights.
o Curative statutes are those which cure
errors and irregularities, thereby
validating judicial or administrative
proceedings, acts of public officers, etc.
which otherwise would not produce their
intended consequences by reason of
some statutory disability or failure to
comply with technical requirement.
o Remedial are those relating to remedies
or modes of procedure, which do not
create new or take away vested rights,
but only operate in furtherance of the
remedy or confirmation of rights
o PD 725 creates a new right and provides
a new remedy; PD 725 granted a new
right to women -- the right to re-acquire
Filipino citizenship even during their
marital coverture (when they lost their
citizenship by marriage to aliens). It also
provided a new remedy in favor of other
natural born Filipinos who lost their
Philippine citizenship but now desire to
re-acquire Philippine citizenship because
prior to PD 725 such former Filipinos
would have had to undergo the tedious
process of naturalization
- ALSO, retroactivity to the date of filing would
prevent prejudice. If it were not to be given
retroactive effect, the delay of processing of, for
example Filipinos who may be stateless (like
Frivaldo who already renounced American
citizenship), may be prejudiced for causes outside
their control. In case of doubt in the
interpretation, it is to be presumed that the law-
making body intended justice to prevail.
- QUESTION presented by SC: How can the
retroactivity of PD 725 benefit Frivaldo
considering that it was enacted in 1975, while
Frivaldo lost his citizenship in 1983, and applied
for repatriation even later, in 1994?
- ANSWER: It is not only the law which is to be
given retroactive effect, but even the repatriation
should be retroacted to his application. It was the
intent of the legislative that the law should apply
to past events to benefit the greatest number of
former Filipinos, enabling them to enjoy the right
of citizenship. No damage to anyone.
- Being a former Filipino who has served the people
repeatedly, Frivaldo deserves a liberal
interpretation of Philippine laws.

Was Lees proclamation valid?
- LEE cites the Labo v Comelec: If the electorate
was fully aware of a candidate's disqualification
but nonetheless cast their votes in favor of the
ineligible candidate, the electorate may be said to
have waived the efficacy of their votes by
throwing away their votes, in which case, the
eligible candidate obtaining the next higher
number of votes may be deemed elected;
- SC SAYS: The quoted Labo doctrine is qualified
by the next paragraph: It has not been shown,
that petitioner Labo was notoriously known as an
ineligible candidate (that the electorate knew of
this). Labo was even allowed by the COMELEC
itself to be voted as its Resolution denying due
course to Labo's certificate of candidacy had not
yet become final;
- Frivaldo was, in 1995, in an identical situation as
Labo was in 1992. The COMELECs cancellation of
his cert of candidacy was not yet final on election
day, so the COMELEC issued a Resolution
declaring that Frivaldo (like Labo in 1992) and
several others can still be voted for in the 1995
- Also, there was no sufficient evidence to show
that the electorate was "fully aware in fact and in
law" of Frivaldo's alleged disqualification

Antonio Begson III v HRET and Teodoro Cruz
2001 | Kapunan, J.
Petitioner filed a Quo Warranto Proceeding
against Cruz after the he lost in the 1998 elections in 2

District of Pangasinan. He alleges Cruz to be not a
natural-born citizen, as required by Article Vi, Section 6 of
the Constitution, because the latter became an American
citizen and could not be considered natural born anymore
upon his reacquisition of PH citizenship thru repatrian.
HRET dismissed. MR denied also.

Isue: Cruz a natural born citizen? Yes.

Petitioner argues that Cruz may no longer be considered
natural-born Filipino since he lost his PH citizenship when
he swore allegiance to the US in 1995, and had to
reacquire the same by repatriation.
- He insists that the Constitution expressly states
that natural-born citizens are those who are
citizens from birth without having to perform any
act to acquire such citizenship.

SC disagrees.

2 kinds of citizens:
1. Natural-born a person who at the time of his
birth is a citizen of a particular county;
2. Naturalized those who have become Filipino
citizens thru naturalization, generally under CA

Naturalization mode for both acquisition and
reacquisition of PH citizenship;
- Mode for initial acquisition: CA 473;
- Reacquisition: CA 63

Repatriation may be had under various statutes by
those who lost their citizenship due to:
1. Desertion of the armed forces;
2. Service in the armed forces of the allied forces in
3. Service in the armed forces of US;
4. Marriage of a Filipino woman to an alien;
5. Political and economic necessity;

- Distinguished from naturalization, it consists
simply of taking an oath of allegiance and
registering said oath in the Local Civil Registry;
- Angat v Republic: doesnt require petition in
- Results in recovery of original nationality;
- If a person is a natural-born citizen before he lost
his PH citizenship, he will be restored to his
former status as a natural-born Filipino;

- Cruz lost his PH citizenship when he joined US
armed forces;
- Subsequently, he reacquired it under RA 2630;
- Having taken oath of allegiance and registering it,
he is deemed to have recovered his original
status as a natural-born citizen;
- The act of repatriation allows him to recover,
or return to, his original status before he
lost his Philippine citizenship;

Petitioner: fact that Cruz had to perform an act to regain
- Untenable;
- The term natural-born first defined in 1973
- 2 requisites must concur for a person to be
considered as such:
o Must be Filipino citizen from birth;
o He does not have to perform any act to
perfect or obtain PH citizenship;
- Under 1973 Consti, there were 2 categories of PH
citizens which were not considered natural-born:
o Naturalized;
o Born before Jan 17, 1973, of Filipino
mothers who, upon reaching the age of
majority elected PH citizenship;
- Present Consti however considers the latter as
natural-born; SO, only naturalized are
considered not natural born;
- As Cruz was not required by law to go through
naturalization proceedings in order to reacquire
his citizenship, he is perforce a natural-born


Mercado v Manzano
1999 | Mendoza, J.

Manzano was born in SF, Californa but his parents
were both Filipino. When he was 37 years old, he ran for
Vice Mayor of Makati.
Mercado and Daza were his opponents in the
1998 elections. He won, with Mercado and Daza in 2
, respectively.
His proclamation was suspended by Comelec
because one Mamaril filed a disqualification case. The
latter alleged that he is not a Filipino citizen.
Mercado motioned to intervene.
Comelec, 2
division cancelled Manzanos COC
saying he is a dual citizen so hes disqualified under LGC
40(d). Comelec en banc however said hes not
On Aug 31, 1998, Boad of Canvassers proclaimed
Manzano as Makati Mayor.

Procedural: Mercado can intervene in Mamarils suit.
Latter can maintain suit.
- Mamaril a registered voter;
- Mercado intervened before proclamation so still
had interest in the outcome of the case;

Manzano is not disqualified under LGC 40(d)
Mercado and OSG argue:
- under LGC 40(d), Congress has commanded in
explicit terms that persons possessing dual
allegiance to hold local elective office are

SC: Dual allegiance is NOT dual citizenship. Manzano
has no dual allegiance.
Dual Citizenship
- Arises as a result of the concurrent application of
the different laws of two or more states, a person
is simultaneously considered a national by the
said states. (i.e. mix of jus soli and jus sanguini)
- Involuntary;

Dual allegiance
- Refers to the situation in which a person
simultaneously powers, by some positive act,
loyalty to two or more states.
- Individuals volition;

Consti Comm deliberations:
- Blas Ople: it was explained that dual allegiance is
not dual citizenship and that while dual allegiance
is threat, dual citizenship, is not and is never
really considered insidious
- Constitutional provision (Art 4.5 of the Consti)
was not concerned with dual citizenship per se
but with naturalized citizens who maintain their
allegiance to their countries of origin even after
their naturalization

LGC 40(d) therefore must be understood to refer to
dual allegiance
- Those with dual citizenship are not subject to the
strict process with respect to their status, for
candidates with dual citizenship it would suffice if,
upon filing of their certificates of candidacy, they
elect Philippine citizenship to terminate their
status as persons with dual citizenship,
considering that their status is unavoidable

By electing Philippine citizenship, the candidates at the
same time forswear allegiance to the other country which
they are also citizens and thereby terminate their status
as dual citizens
- Acts of Manzano electing Philippine citizenship:
o Voting in the 1992, 1995 and 1998
elections he effectively renounced his US
o Filing his COC when he ran for his
present post, he elected Philippine
citizneship and in effect renounced his
American Citizenship

Mercado: Manzano used his US passport so the oath he
took in his COC was revoked
- Untenable, Manzano used his passport in 1997;
he filed his COC in 1998;
- His oath of allegiance to the Philippines stated in
his COC combined with the following facts show
he elected Philippine citizenship
o Spent youth and adulthood here
o Received his education here
o Practiced his profession as an artist here
o Taken part in the past elections in this

AASJS (Advocates and Adherents of Social Justice
for School Teachers and Allied Workers) Member
Calilung v Darumanong (SoJ)
2007 | Quisumbing, J.
Prohibition sought by petitioner to stop
respondent from implementing RA 9225
. Said law is
alleged to be unconstitutional as it violates Section 5,
Article IV of the 1987 Constitution which provides that
dual allegiance is inimical to national interest and shall be
dealt with by law.

Petitioner argues (mainly, the act cheapens PH
1. Sections 2
and 3(oath) allow dual allegiance and
not dual citizenship;
2. Section 2 allows converted Filipinos to retain PH
citizenship without losing their foreign citizenship;

An Act Making the Citizenship of Philippine Citizens Who Acquire Foreign
Citizenship Permanent, Amending for the Purpose Commonwealth Act No. 63,
As Amended, and for Other Purposes
SEC. 2. Declaration of Policy.-It is hereby declared the policy of the State
that all Philippine citizens who become citizens of another country shall be
deemed not to have lost their Philippine citizenship under the conditions of
this Act.
3. Section 3 permits dual allegiance because the act
allows natural born citizens of PH to regain their
PH citizenship by simply taking an oath of
allegiance without forfeiting their foreign

Is the act unconstitutional? No.

SC went to see deliberations.
- Legislative intent: to do away with the provision
in Commonwealth Act No. 63
which takes away
Philippine citizenship from natural-born Filipinos
who become naturalized citizens of other
- What the law allows is dual citizenship to natural-
born Filipinos who have lost PH citizenship
because of their naturalization in a foreign

On its face, it does not recognize dual allegiance;
- By swearing to the supreme authority of the
Republic, the person implicitly renounces his
- From section 3, the act stayed clear out of the
problem of dual allegiance and shifted the burden
of confronting the issue of whether or not there is
dual allegiance to the concerned foreign country;

Petitioner: Court should rule on the issue though there is
no law yet on the matter of dual allegiance;
- Mercado v Manzano case already drew up
guidelines to distinguish dual allegiance from dual

SC: No.
- Section 5, Article IV of the Consti mere
declaration of policy; not self-executing;
- Framers of the act were not concerned with dual
citizenship per se, but with the status of
naturalized citizens who maintain their allegiance
to their countries of origin even after their
- As to Mercado case, petitioner misreads the case;
case did not set the parameters of what
constitutes dual allegiance but merely made a
distinction between dual allegiance and dual


Romualdez-Marcos v Comelec
1995 | Kapunan, J.
Petitioner Imelda filed her COC for the position
Leyte First District Rep. MOntejo filed a petition for
cancellation and disqualification with Comelec alleging
that petitioner did not meet the constitutional (1 year)
requirement for residency because she put only seven
months in the COC. Subsequently, petitioner tried to
amend the entry to since childhood but this was not
accepted by Comelec saying it was filed out of time.
Petitioner then filed an amended COC with
Comelec Head Office alleging there was an honest
misinterpretation on her part and that she had always
maintained Tacloban City as her domicile or residence.
Note: she had actual presence of 7 months in Tolosa,
Comelec 2
Division cancelled her COC. En banc
denied MR.

Issue: W/N petitioner was a resident, for election
purposes, of the First District of Leyte for one year at the
time of 1995 elections. Yes.

For political purposes the concepts of residence and
domicile are dictated by the peculiar criteria of
political laws
- residence for election purposes is used
synonymously with domicile.

Article 50 of CC: for the exercise of civil rights and the
fulfillment of civil obligations, the domicile of natural
persons is their place of habitual residence;
- Domicile: a place to which, whenever absent for
business or for pleasure, one intends to return,
and depends on facts and circumstances in the
sense that they disclose intent;
- Twin elements:
o Fact of physical presence in a fixed place;
o Intention of returning there permanently
(animus manendi);
- Essential distinction between residence and
domicile in law:
o Residence involves the intent to leave
when the purpose for which the resident
has taken up his abode ends.
- Mere absence of an individual from his permanent
residence without the intention to abandon it does
not result in a loss or change of domicile;
- Consti Comm deliberations: when Consti speaks
of residence in election law, it actually means only
Has petitioner satisfied the residency requirement? Yes
- It is the fact of residence, not a statement in a
certificate of candidacy which ought to be decisive
in determining whether or not and individual has
satisfied the constitution's residency qualification
o The statement becomes material only
when there is or appears to be a
deliberate attempt to mislead, misinform
or hid a fact which would otherwise
render a candidate ineligible;
- SC notes there was an honest mistake in jotting
the word seven;

Respondent: petitioner could not be possibly domiciled in
District of Leyte because, except for a time she studied
and worked in Tacloban City, she continuously lived in
- SC: no; an individual does not lose his domicile
even if he has lived and maintained residence in
different place;
- Absence from legal residence or domicile to
pursue a profession, to study or to do other
things of a temporary or semi-permanent nature
does not constitute loss of residence;
- Petitioner held various residences for different
purposes during the last four decades but none of
these purposes unequivocally point to an
intention to abandon her domicile of origin in
Tacloban, Leyte.

Respondent: Tacloban was not petitioners domicile of
origin because she did not live there until she was eight
years old;
- SC: no;
- 1
, a minor follows the domicile of his parents;
o As domicile, once acquired is retained
until a new one is gained, it follows that
in spite of the fact of petitioner's being
born in Manila, Tacloban, Leyte was her
domicile of origin by operation of law;
- 2
, domicile of origin is not easily lost; To
successfully effect a change of domicile, one must
o Actual removal or actual change of
o Bona fide intention of abandoning the
former place of residence and
establishing a new one; and
o Acts which correspond with the purpose;

Only with evidence showing concurrence of all
three requirements can the presumption of
continuity or residence be rebutted, for a
change of residence requires an actual and
deliberate abandonment, and one cannot
have two legal residences at the same time;

Petitioner did not lose her domicile of origin by operation
of law as a result of her marriage to Ferdinand Marcos in
- There is an established distinction between CC
concepts of domicile and residence;
- The presumption that the wife automatically gains
the husband's domicile by operation of law upon
marriage cannot be inferred from the use of the
term "residence" in Article 110
of the Civil Code;
- Article 110 yields nothing which would suggest
that the female spouse automatically loses her
domicile of origin in favor of the husband's choice
of residence upon marriage.
- Article contemplates only actual residence;
- Insofar as the Civil Code is concerned-affecting
the rights and obligations of husband and wife
the term residence should only be interpreted to
mean "actual residence;

Assuming petitioner gained a new domicile after her
marriage, her acts following her return to the country
indicated she expressly chose her domicile of origin

Art. 110. The husband shall fix the residence of the family. But the
court may exempt the wife from living with the husband if he should live
abroad unless in the service of the Republic.
(assuming this was lost by operation of law) as her
- Petitioner obtained her residence certificate in
1992 in Tacloban, Leyte, while living in her
brother's house, an act which supports the
domiciliary intention clearly manifested in her
letters to the PCGG Chairman.

Comelec Reso set aside.

1996 | Francisco, J.
1995 Quezon Province elections, Marquez filed a
petition for disqualification against Rodriguez (governor
position alleging that the latter is a fugitive from justice
for leaving the US where a charge against him for
fraudulent insurance claims, grand theft and attempted
grand theft of personal property was pending. He alleges
that Rodriguez is ineligible under Section 4(e) of LGC.
Comelec found Rodriguez to be a fugitive from
justice in line with the 1995 Marquez Decisions definition
of the term.
Comelec said that a fugitive from justice includes
not only those who flee after conviction to avoid
punishment but likewise those who, after being charged,
flee to avoid prosecution Filing of charges prior to flight
is not an antecedent requirement to label one a fugitive
from justice. Mere commission of a 'crime' without
charges having been filed for the same and flight
subsequent thereto sufficiently meet the definition.
Attention is directed at the use of the word 'crime' which
is not employed to connote guilt or conviction for the
commission thereof.
Because Rodriguez walked out during the hearing
of the case, COMELEC considered him as having waived
his right to disprove the authenticity of Marquez
documentary evidence. Nevertheless, Rodriguez emerged
as the victorious candidate in the May 8, 1995 election for
the position of governor.

However, Comelec also made a report entitled
EVALUATION" wherein the COMELEC, after calibrating the
parties evidence, declared that Rodriguez is NOT a
"fugitive from justice" as defined in the main opinion of
the MARQUEZ Decision, thus making a 180-degree
turnaround from its finding in the Consolidated Resolution.

Comelec said that intent to evade is a material
element of the Marquez Decision definition. Such intent to
evade is absent in Rodriguez' case because evidence has
established that Rodriguez arrived in the Philippines (June
25, 1985) long before the criminal charge was instituted
in the Los Angeles Court (November 12, 1985).

Issue: W/N Rodriguez is a fugitive from justice. No.


As to intent:
Fugitive from justice not only those who flee after
conviction to avoid punishment but likewise who, after
being charged, flee to avoid prosecution
- Indicates that intent to evade is the compelling
factor that makes a person leave a particular
jurisdiction, and there can only be intent to evade
prosecution or punishment when the fleeing
person knows of an already instituted indictment,
or of a promulgated judgment of conviction.
- Intent to evade must therefore be established by
proof that there has already been a conviction or
at least, a charge has already been filed, at
the time of flight;

At case:
- Rodriguez arrived on June 25, 1985 or 5
months before the filing of the felony
complaint in LA court and issuance of the
arrest warrant;
- It was clearly impossible for Rodriguez to have
known about such felony complaint and arrest
warrant at the time he left the US, as there was
in fact no complaint and arrest warrant much
less conviction to speak of yet at such time.
- Court agrees with Comelec that: The voluminous
copy of an investigation report presented by
Marquez in order to establish the fact that it was
impossible for petitioner not to have known of
said investigation due to its magnitude is
misleading because investigations of this nature,
no matter how extensive or prolonged, are
shrouded with utmost secrecy to afford law
enforcers the advantage of surprise and effect the
arrest of those who would be charged.
- The circumstantial fact that it was 17 days after
Rodriguez' departure that charges against him
were filed cannot overturn the presumption of
good faith in his favor;
- The evidence presented by Rodriguez even proves
that his compulsion to return to the Philippines
was due to his desire to join and participate
vigorously in the political campaigns against
former President Ferdinand E. Marcos

When, in good faith, a person leaves the territory of a
state not his own, homeward bound, and learns
subsequently of charges filed against him while in the
relative peace and service of his own country, the fact
that he does not subject himself to the jurisdiction
of the former state does not qualify him outright as
a fugitive from justice.
- There is no law requiring petitioner to travel to
the United States and subject himself to the
monetary burden and tedious process of
defending himself before the country's courts.
- During that time, Rodriguez was also in public
- He could not have gone back to the United States
in the middle of his term nor could he have
traveled intermittently thereto without
jeopardizing the interest of the public he serves;

Law of the case doctrine forbids the Court to craft an
expanded re-definition of "fugitive from justice" (which is
at variance with the MARQUEZ Decision) and proceed
therefrom in resolving the instant petition

VITUG, J., dissenting opinion:
The mere fact that there are pending charges in the
United States and that petitioner Rodriguez is in the
Philippines make petitioner a fugitive from justice within
the intent and meaning of Section 40(e) of the Local
Government Code of 1991
o Congress, not having provided otherwise, must
have intended the ordinary connotation of the
term to prevail.
o The issue is largely a factual matter and in that
determination, the motive or reason for his plight
need not be inquired into.
o Animus fugere may be significant but it is not
essential and what matters is not why he
leaves but the fact that he leaves, for it
should not be unreasonable to assume that
he was not unaware of his own prior deeds
or misdeeds.
o The law has provided no further provisos and no
saving clauses. When there is no obscurity or
ambiguity in an enabling law, it must be merely
made to apply as it is so written.