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Pia Cayetano also faces ethics complaint for alleged plagiarism


After Senate Majority Floor Leader Vicente Sotto III, now it's Senator Pia Cayetano who is facing an ethics complaint.
 
On Wednesday, a man named Alberto Loquez Ong Jr. filed an ethics complaint against Cayetano for alleged plagiarism in her speeches.
Incidentally, the chair of the Senate ethics committee is Cayetano's brother Senate Minority Floor Leader Alan Peter Cayetano.
 
Ong said that in two instances, Pia Cayetano "abused and misused her knowledge of the law when she deliberately delivered speeches without proper attribution from the author of the work."
 
"It is respectfully prayed of this honorable Senate committee on ethics and privileges to declare Senator Pia Cayetano as unfit and unbecoming of national public official for having violated the Intellectual Property Code and exhibiting improper conduct for arrogance and abuse of her law profession. Other reliefs just and equitable are equally prayed for," he said.
"As a senator and lawyer, Sen. Pia Cayetano should not initiate the act of violating any of the existing Philippine laws. She is commanded by her obligation to the citizens of the Philippines to obey the Constitution and laws, and not to use her lawyering profession and public position to be above the law," he said, citing the lawmaker's alleged violation of the Intellectural Property Code.
 
Ong was pertaining to the plagiarism allegations that were raised before by a blogger named Elisa Sangalang. 
 
Sangalang alleged that Cayetano copied parts of her speech on “The Status of the Philippines in Achieving the Millennium Development Goals” and her privilege speech on the World Environment Day.
 
"Senator Pia Cayetano has shown conduct which is improper and inconsistent with her duty as both a lawyer and an elected, national public official," said Ong.
 
"Those who violate the laws must be treated the same for no one is above the law, and being a lawmaker should not be abused," he added.
 
Technical glitch?
 
Asked for a comment, Cayetano said she will issue a statement later in the day.
 
Her staff likewise said they will still have to read the complaint.
 
But the senator had said that she has always acknowledged the work of other writers in her speeches.
 
However, she said that it's difficult to cite all of the sources while the speech is being delivered so she just mentions the major source at the beginning and makes sure to insert footnotes where the speeches are uploaded.
  
As for the two alleged plagiarism accusations against her, she said her staff just encountered "technical glitches" and the footnotes failed to appear on her website.
 
Not the first
 
Before Cayetano, a group of bloggers and university professors filed an ethics complaint against Sotto and said the senator should be disciplined by the Senate for allegedly plagiarizing parts of his speeches against the controversial Reproductive Health bill.
 
But a noted elections lawyer and another group have asked the same Senate panel to dismiss the ethics complaint against Sotto.
 
Sotto, for his part, said he thinks that the complaint against him will be immediately dismissed by the panel.
 
Cayetano is the co-sponsor of the RH bill while Sotto is one of the vocal oppositors of the measures. — RSJ, GMA News