The Lawphil Project - Arellano Law Foundation
SPA No. 04-003 January 09, 2004
VICTORINO X. FORNIER vs. RONALD ALLAN KELLEY POE
Republic of the Philippines
SPA No. 04-003             January 9, 2004
IN RE: PETITION FOR DISQUALIFICATION OF PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE RONALD ALLAN KELLEY POE, ALSO KNOWN AS FERNANDO POE, JR.
VICTORINO X. FORNIER, petitioner,
P E T I T I O N
Petitioner VICTORINO X. FORNIER, by counsel, respectfully states:
1. Petitioner is of legal age, Filipino citizen of voting age and registered voter of Pasay City with address at 122 Suerte Street, Pasay City 1300, where he may be served with processes of the Honorable Commission.
2. Respondent Ronald Allan Kelley Poe, also known as Fernando Poe, Jr. ("Poe"), is a candidate for the position of President of the Republic of the Philippines under the Koalisyon ng Nagkakaisang Pilipino ("KNP") party for the 10 May 2004 elections. Based on his Certificate of Candidacy, respondent Poe claims to be of legal age and is a resident of 23 Lincoln Street, Greenhills, San Juan, Metro Manila, where he may be served with summons and other processes of the Honorable Commission. A copy of respondent Poe's Certificate of Candidacy is attached and made integral part hereof as Annex "A".
3. Under Section 2, Article VII of the 1987 Constitution, the qualifications of the President of the Republic of the Philippines are enumerated as follows:
"Sec. 2. No person may be elected president unless he is a natural-born citizen of the Philippines, a registered voter, able to read and write, at least forty years of age on the day of the election, and resident of the Philippines for at least ten years immediately preceding such election." [Emphasis supplied]
4. Respondent Poe, however, is not even a citizen of the Philippines, much more a natural born citizen, and as such lacks one of the essential qualifications for the position of President of the Republic of the Philippines since both of his parents are not Filipino citizens.
5. Based on respondent Poe's alleged Certificate of Birth, he was born on 2 August 1939. A copy of the said Certificate of Birth is attached and made integral part hereof as Annex "B".
5.1. Respondent Poe's alleged Certificate of Birth indicated that his parents are Allan F. Poe and Bessie Kelley.
5.2. Respondent Poe's alleged Certificate of Birth indicated that his mother, Bessie Kelley, is an American citizen.
5.3. However, the alleged Certificate of Birth of respondent Poe falsely of incorrectly indicated the real citizenship of his father, Allan F. Poe since he is legally not a Filipino citizen, as shown below.
6. Contrary to what was falsely indicated in the alleged Certificate of Birth of respondent Poe, the latter's father, Allan F. Poe, is not a Filipino, but an alien, specifically, a citizen of Spain.
6.1. On 05 July 1936, Allan F. Poe expressly and categorically declared in a public instrument that he was a Spanish citizen. A copy of the Marriage Contract executed by Allan F. Poe and one Paulita Gomez at the Convento de Santo Domingo at Intramuros, Manila is attached and made an integral part hereof as Annex "C".
6.2. Moreover, in said Marriage Contract, Allan F. Poe likewise categorically and expressly admitted that both of his parents, Lorenzo Poe and Marta Reyes are also citizens of Spain.
6.3. Clearly, respondent Poe's father is a Spanish citizen whose parents are both Spanish citizens.
7. Thus, respondent Poe could not have possibly acquired Filipino citizenship from his father, Allan F. Poe since the latter is a Spanish citizen.
8. But even assuming arguendo that respondent Poe's father, Allan F. Poe was a Filipino citizen, as indicated in respondent Poe's Certificate of Birth (Annex "B" hereof), still respondent Poe could not have validly acquired Filipino citizenship from his father due to the fact that the purported marriage of his parents, Allan F. Poe and Bessie Kelley, is void.
8.1. Under Philippine jurisprudence, an illegitimate child, i.e. a child conceived and born outside a valid marriage, follows the citizenship of his mother. [United States vs. Ong Tianse, 29 Phil. 332 (1915)]
8.2. As previously stated, respondent Poe's father, Allan F. Poe, married Paulita Gomez on 05 July 1936, which marriage was subsisting at the time of the purported marriage of respondent Poe's father to his mother, Bessie Kelley. (cf. Annex "C" hereof.
8.3. Moreover, it appears that Allan F. Poe's first wife, Paulita Gomez, even filed a case of bigamy and concubinage against him after discovering his bigamous relationship with Bessie Kelley. A copy of the Affidavit dated 13 July 1939 executed by Paulita Gomez in Spanish attesting to the foregoing facts, together with an English translation thereof, are attached and made an integral parts hereof as Annexes "D" and D-1, respectively.
9. Verily, having been born out of void marriage, respondent Poe is an illegitimate child of Allan F. Poe and Bessie Kelley. Consequently, the citizenship of respondent Poe follows that of his mother, Bessie Kelley, who is undeniably an American citizen.
10. Under the 1935 Constitution, which was then applicable at the time of respondent Poe's birth, only the following are considered Filipino citizens:
"SECTION 1. The following are citizens of the Philippines:
1. Those who are citizens of the Philippine Islands at the time of the adoption of this Constitution;
2. Those born in the Philippine Islands of foreign parents who, before the adoption of this Constitution, had been elected to public office in the Philippines Islands;
3. Those whose fathers are citizens of the Philippines;
4. Those whose mothers are citizens of the Philippines and, upon reaching the age of majority, elect Philippine citizenship; and
5. Those who are naturalized in accordance with law."
11. Clearly, respondent Poe is not a citizen of the Philippines, much more a natural-born Filipino citizen, considering that both of his parents are aliens. Also, even assuming arguendo that respondent Poe's father, Allan F. Poe, is a Filipino citizen, as indicated in his Certificate of Birth (Annex "B" hereof), since respondent Poe is an illegitimate child of his father with Bessie Kelley, an American, he acquired the citizenship of the latter. [United States vs. Ong Tianse, supra].
12. Hence, respondent Poe, not being a natural-born citizen of the Philippines, lacks an essential qualification and corollarily possesses a disqualification to be elected President of the Republic of the Philippines, as expressly required under the 1987 Constitution.
13. In view of the foregoing, respondent Poe should be disqualified from being a candidate for the position of President of the Republic of the Philippines in the coming 10 May 2004 elections.
WHEREFORE, it is respectfully prayed that Ronald Allan Kelley Poe, also known as Fernando Poe, Jr., be disqualified from running for the position of President of the Republic of the Philippines, and that his Certificate of Candidacy be denied due course, or cancelled.
Makati City for the City of Manila, 09 January 2004.
Medina & Bolongaita Law Offices
(sgd.) JOSE GERARDO A. MEDINA
(sgd.) RICO B. BOLONGAITA
VERIFICATION / CERTIFICATION
REPUBLIC OF THE PHILIPPINES   )
AFFIDAVIT OF SERVICE
I, VICTORINO X. FORNIER, petitioner before the Commission on Elections in the matter entitled, "In Re: Petition for Disqualification of Ronald Allan Kelley Poe, Also Known As Fernando Poe, Jr.; Victorino X. Fornier, Petitioner; versus Ronald Allan Poe, Also Known As Fernando Poe, Jr.", after being sworn, depose and say, that:
On January 9, 2004 at about 10:51 a. m., I personally served a copy of the foregoing Petition, SPA Case No. ________________________ pursuant to Rule 13 of the 1997 Rules of Civil Procedure, on respondent Ronald Allan Kelley Poe, AKA: Fernando Poe, Jr., by personal service at his residence at No. 23 Lincoln Street, Greenhills, San Juan, Metro Manila, thru delivery of said copy to Mr. Jerry T. Aguila, a security guard of Lightning Force General Services, Inc., with company I.D. NO. 23-013, a person of sufficient age and discretion in the employ of respondent at his home, who manifested to me that the respondent and his spouse were not at home but that he was authorized to receive said copy of the petition, received and acknowledged the same in writing, and undertook to hand over said copy to the respondent upon his arrival.
IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have signed this affidavit this January 9, 2004 at Manila.
(SGD) VICTORINO X. FORNIER
SUBSCRIBED AND SWORN TO before me at Manila this January 9, 2004 by affiant, who exhibited to me his Community Tax Certificate No. 05606355 issued at Manila on January 8, 2003.
Doc. No.       198
ATTY. FERNANDO T. COLLANTES
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