Facts: Elven Invencion, an 8-year-old grade two pupil of Sapang Tagalog Elementary School in Tarlac, Tarlac, testified that he is a half-brother of Cynthia and son of Artemio with his second common-law wife. Sometime before the end of the school year in 1996, while he was sleeping in one room with his father Artemio, Cynthia, and two other younger brothers, he was awakened by Cynthias loud cries. Looking towards her, he saw his father on top of Cynthia, doing a pumping motion. After about two minutes, his father put on his short pants. Elven further declared that Artemio was a very strict and cruel father and a drunkard. Eddie Sucat also testified to what Elven had seen. Gloria Pagala, the mother of Cynthia and former common-law wife of Artemio, testified that she and Artemio started living together in Guimba, Nueva Ecija. And out of the relationship, it bore them 6 kids. One of her son Novelito told her that Cynthia was pregnant. Gloria then went to the house of Artemio and asked Cynthia about her condition. The latter confessed that she had been sexually abused by her father. Gloria then went to the office of the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) in Tarlac and reported what Artemio had done to their daughter Cynthia. Dr. Rosario Fider of Tarlac Provincial Hospital testified that she examined Cynthia on 16 September 1996. She found Cynthia to be five to six months pregnant and to have incomplete, healed hymenal lacerations at 3, 5, 8 oclock positions, which could have been caused by sexual intercourse or any foreign body inserted in her private part. Atty. Florencio Canlas, an NBI agent, testified that on 18 September 1996, Cynthia, accompanied by her mother, complained before him and NBI Supervising Agent Rolando Vergara that she was raped by her father Artemio. She then executed a written statement. The defense did not present Artemio as a witness. Instead, his counsel de parte, Atty. Isabelo Salamida, took the witness stand and testified for the defense. trial court convicted Artemio in Criminal Case No. 9375. It, however, acquitted him in all the other twelve cases for lack of evidence. Hence this appeal. 

Issue: WON Elven’s testimony may be admissible and nor violative of parental and filial relationship

Held: No. As to the competency of Elven to testify, we rule that such is not affected by Section 25, Rule 130 of the Rules of Court, otherwise known as the rule on filial privilege. This rule is not strictly a rule on disqualification because a descendant is not incompetent or disqualified to testify against an ascendant. The rule refers to a privilege not to testify, which can be invoked or waived like other privileges. As correctly observed by the lower court, Elven was not compelled to testify against his father; he chose to waive that filial privilege when he voluntarily testified against Artemio. Elven declared that he was testifying as a witness against his father of his own accord and only to tell the truth.

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