By Jeffrey Damicog
After two years since it was filed, the Supreme Court (SC) is set to conduct oral arguments over the petition seeking to allow same-sex marriage.
SC clerk of court Edgar Aricheta has issued an advisory that the oral arguments for the petition will be held on Tuesday afternoon.
The petition was filed by on May 18, 2015 by lawyer Jesus Nicardo Falcis III who sought to declare as unconstitutional prohibitions against same-sex marriage.
The petitioners-in-intervention in the case are LGBTS Christian Church Inc., Rev.
Crescencio “Ceejay” Agbayani Jr., Marlon Felipe and Maria Arlyn “Sugar” Ibañez, while, lawyer Fernando Perito is the intervenor.
Aricheta has already listed down the ground rules the parties in the petition should observe during the oral arguments.
Among the rules laid down, the parties will be given 20 minutes to argue their case before the SC en banc, after which, the magistrates will have the “privilege to ask any question on any relevant matter or require submission of any document necessary for an enlightened resolution of this case.”
In his petition, Falcis sought to declare as unconstitutional provisions of the Family Code which limits marriage between a man and woman as well as declares lesbianism or homosexuality as grounds for annulment and legal separation.
Falcis also asked the SC to prohibit the Civil Registrar-General from enforcing the provisions in the processing of applications for and in issuing marriage licenses against homosexual couples.
Falcis pointed out the provisions in the Family Code violated his constitutionally protected right to due process and equal protection, right to decisional privacy and right to found a family in accordance with religious conviction.
He also indicated the Family Code repealed the 1949 Civil Code which did not make a distinction between heterosexual and homosexual couples.