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Ong Chia vs. Republic of the Philippines (G.R. No. 127240. Ma ch! 27!

2000" #acts$ Ong Chia was born on January 1, 1923 in Amoy, China. In 1932, as a nine-year old boy, he arrived at the ort o! "anila on board the vessel #Ang$ing.# %in&e then, he has stayed in the 'hili ines where he !ound em loyment and eventually started his own business, married a (ili ina, with whom he had !our &hildren. On July ), 19*9, at the age o! ++, he !iled a veri!ied etition to be admitted as a (ili ino &iti,en under C.A. -o. ).3, otherwise $nown as the /evised -aturali,ation 0aw, as amended. On August 21, 1999, the trial &ourt granted the etition and admitted Ong Chia to 'hili ine &iti,enshi . 2he %tate, however, through the O!!i&e o! the %oli&itor 3eneral, a ealed &ontending that etitioner4 516 !ailed to state all the names by whi&h he is or had been $nown7 526 !ailed to state all his !ormer la&es o! residen&e in violation o! C.A. -o. ).3, 8.7 536 !ailed to &ondu&t himsel! in a ro er and irre roa&hable manner during his entire stay in the 'hili ines, in violation o! 827 5)6 has no $nown lu&rative trade or o&&u ation and his revious in&omes have been insu!!i&ient or misde&lared, also in &ontravention o! 827 and 516 !ailed to su ort his etition with the a ro riate do&umentary eviden&e. Anne9ed to the %tate:s a ellant:s brie! was a &o y o! a 19.. etition !or naturali,ation !iled by etitioner with the % e&ial Committee on -aturali,ation in %C- Case -o. ;31.+., in whi&h etitioner stated that in addition to his name o! #Ong Chia,# he had li$ewise been $nown sin&e &hildhood as #0oreto Chia Ong.# As etitioner, however, !ailed to state this other name in his 19*9 etition !or naturali,ation, it was &ontended that his etition must !ail. 2he state also anne9ed in&ome ta9 returns allegedly !iled by etitioner !rom 19.3 to 19.. to show that his net in&ome &ould hardly su ort himsel! and his !amily. 2o rove that etitioner !ailed to &ondu&t himsel! in a ro er and irre roa&hable manner during his stay in the 'hili ines, the %tate &ontended that, although etitioner &laimed that he and /amona <illaruel had been married twi&e, on&e be!ore a =udge in 1913, and then again in &hur&h in 19.., etitioner a&tually lived with his wi!e without the bene!it o! marriage !rom 1913 until they were married in 19... It was alleged that etitioner !ailed to resent his 1913 marriage &ontra&t, i! there be any. 2he %tate also anne9ed a &o y o! etitioner:s 19.. marriage &ontra&t and a Joint-A!!idavit e9e&uted by etitioner and his wi!e. 2hese do&uments show that when etitioner married /amona <illaruel on (ebruary 23, 19.., no marriage li&ense had been re>uired in a&&ordan&e with Art..+ o! the Civil Code be&ause etitioner and /amona <illaruel had been living together as husband and wi!e sin&e 1913 without the bene!it o! marriage. 2his, a&&ording to the %tate, belies his &laim that when he started living with his wi!e in 1913, they had already been married. 2he %tate also argued that, as shown by etitioner:s Immigrant Certi!i&ate o! /esiden&e, etitioner resided at #J.". ?asa %treet, Iloilo,# but he did not in&lude said address in his etition. On -ovember 11, 199+, the Court o! A eals rendered its de&ision whi&h, as already noted, reversed the trial &ourt and denied etitioner:s a li&ation !or naturali,ation. It ruled that due to the im ortan&e o! naturali,ation &ases, the %tate is not re&luded !rom raising >uestions not resented in the lower &ourt and brought u !or the !irst time on a eal. Ong Chia:s rin&i al &ontention is that the a ellate &ourt erred in &onsidering the do&uments whi&h had merely been anne9ed by the %tate to its a ellant:s brie! and, on the basis o! whi&h, =usti!ied the reversal o! the trial &ourt:s de&ision. -ot having been resented and !ormally o!!ered as eviden&e, they are mere #s&ra 5s6 o! a er devoid o! any evidentiary value,# so it was argued,

be&ause under /ule 132, 83) o! the /evised /ules on @viden&e, the &ourt shall &onsider no eviden&e whi&h has not been !ormally o!!ered. Ong Chia admits that he !ailed to mention said address in his etition, but argues that sin&e the Immigrant Certi!i&ate o! /esiden&e &ontaining it had been !ully ublished, with the etition and the other anne9es, su&h ubli&ation &onstitutes substantial &om lian&e with 8.. %&&'($ Ahether the do&uments anne9ed by the %tate to its a elantBs brie! without having been resented and !ormally o!!ered as eviden&e under /ule 132, %e&tion 3) o! the /evised /ules on @viden&e =usti!ied the reversal o! o! the 2rial CourtBs de&ision )(*+$ C@%. De&ision o! the Court o! A eals was a!!irmed. 'etition was denied. 'etitioner !ailed to note /ule 1)3 o! the /ules o! Court whi&h rovides that 2hese rules shall not a ly to land registration, &adastral and ele&tion &ases, naturali,ation and insolven&y ro&eedings, and other &ases not herein rovided !or, e9&e t by analogy or in a su letory &hara&ter and whenever ra&ti&able and &onvenient. 5@m hasis added6 'res&inding !rom the above, the rule on !ormal o!!er o! eviden&e 5/ule 132, 83)6 now being invo$ed by etitioner is &learly not a li&able to the resent &ase involving a etition !or naturali,ation. 2he only instan&e when said rules may be a lied by analogy or su letorily in su&h &ases is when it is # ra&ti&able and &onvenient.# 2hat is not the &ase here, sin&e relian&e u on the do&uments resented by the %tate !or the !irst time on a eal, in !a&t, a ears to be the more ra&ti&al and &onvenient &ourse o! a&tion &onsidering that de&ision in naturali,ation ro&eedings are not &overed by the rule on res =udi&ata. Conse>uently, a !inal !avorable =udgment does not re&lude the %tate !rom later on moving !or a revo&ation o! the grant o! naturali,ation on the basis o! the same do&uments. It is settled that naturali,ation laws should be rigidly en!or&ed and stri&tly &onstrued in !avor o! the government and against the a li&ant. E2Fhe rule o! stri&t a li&ation o! the law in naturali,ation &ases de!eat etitionerBs argument o! Gsubstantial &om lian&eH with the re>uirement under the /evised -aturali,ation 0aw. E2Fhe reason !or the rule rohibiting the admission o! eviden&e whi&h has not been !ormally o!!ered is to a!!ord the o osite arty the &han&e to ob=e&t to their admissibility. Ong Chia &annot &laim that he was de rived o! the right to ob=e&t to the authenti&ity o! the do&uments submitted to the a ellate &ourt by the %tate. Ie &ould have in&luded his ob=e&tions, as he, in !a&t, did, in the brie! he !iled with the Court o! A eals, thus4 2he authenti&ity o! the alleged etition !or naturali,ation 5%C- Case -o. ;31.+.6 whi&h was su osedly !iled by Ong Chia under 0OI 2.; has not been established. In !a&t, the &ase number o! the alleged etition !or naturali,ationJ is ;31.+. while the &ase number o! the etition a&tually !iled by the a ellee is ;31..+. 2hus, said do&ument is totally unreliable and should not be &onsidered by the Ionorable Court in resolving the instant a eal.