... On January 11, 1977, appellant filed a petition with the Court of First Instance of Rizal for the probate of the holographic will of Ricardo B. Bonilla and the issuance of letters testamentary in her favor. The petition, docketed as Sp. Proc. No. 8432, was opposed by the appellees Amparo Aranza Bonilla, Wilferine Bonilla Treyes Expedita Bonilla Frias and Ephraim Bonilla on the following grounds:
(1) Appellant was estopped from claiming that the deceased left a will by failing to produce the will within twenty days of the death of the testator as required by Rule 75, section 2 of the Rules of Court;
(2) The alleged copy of the alleged holographic will did not contain a disposition of property after death and was not intended to take effect after death, and therefore it was not a will
(3) The alleged hollographic will itself,and not an alleged copy thereof, must be produced, otherwise it would produce no effect, as held in Gam v. Yap, 104 Phil. 509; and
(4 ) The deceased did not leave any will, holographic or otherwise, executed and attested as required by law.
The appellees likewise moved for the consolidation of the case with another case Sp. Proc. No, 8275). Their motion was granted by the court in an order dated April 4, 1977.
On November 13, 1978, following the consolidation of the cases, the appellees moved again to dismiss the petition for the probate of the will. They argued that:
(1) The alleged holographic was not a last will but merely an instruction as to the management and improvement of the schools and colleges founded by decedent Ricardo B. Bonilla; and
(2) Lost or destroyed holographic wills cannot be proved by secondary evidence unlike ordinary wills.
Upon opposition of the appellant, the motion to dismiss was denied by the court in its order of February 23, 1979.
The appellees then filed a motion for reconsideration on the ground that the order was contrary to law and settled pronouncements and rulings of the Supreme Court, to which the appellant in turn filed an opposition. On July 23, 1979, the court set aside its order of February 23, 1979 and dismissed the petition for the probate of the will of Ricardo B. Bonilla. The court said:
... It is our considered opinion that once the original copy of the holographic will is lost, a copy thereof cannot stand in lieu of the original.
In the case of Gam vs. Yap, 104 Phil. 509, 522, the Supreme Court held that 'in the matter of holographic wills the law, it is reasonable to suppose, regards the document itself as the material proof of authenticity of said wills.
MOREOVER, this Court notes that the alleged holographic will was executed on January 25, 1962 while Ricardo B. Bonilla died on May 13, 1976. In view of the lapse of more than 14 years from the time of the execution of the will to the death of the decedent, the fact that the original of the will could not be located shows to our mind that the decedent had discarded before his death his allegedly missing Holographic Will.