Now it's Sen. Pia's turn to be accused of plagiarism; blogger claims she's covering tracks
The online news portal of TV5
MANILA, Philippines - Is Sen. Pia Cayetano, the principal sponsor of the Reproductive Health bill, also guilty of plagiarism?
The question has been raised by a blogger who further accused Cayetano, one of the key proponents of the Reproductive Health Bill, of trying to cover up her alleged misdeed by, supposedly, hastily adding footnotes to two previous speeches after plagiarism questions hounded Senate Majority Leader Vicente Sotto III, an anti-RH Bill legislator.
Sotto came under fire for lifting statements from a number of blogs, and using the same in two speeches opposing the RH Bill.
A blogger, writing for pinoytemplars.blogspot.com,
made the charges against Cayetano just days after Sotto’s chief of staff, Hector Villacorta, publicly admitted that he "lifted" portions of an article written by American blogger Sarah Pope, who in turn had quoted Dr. Natasha Campbell-McBride.
In an entry posted by Elisa Sangalang on August 19, the blog said that two of Cayetano's own privilege speeches, one regarding the controversial measure, contained paragraphs that came from sources available online, but without any proper attribution.
On August 20, Sangalang posted another entry, this time noting that footnotes "mysteriously appeared" on the senator's two speeches, as uploaded in her own website. Sangalang noted that official records of the Senate do not contain the same footnotes.
Sangalang said the senator failed to credit health undersecretary Mario Villaverde who made a PowerPoint presentation in April 2008 entitled, "Accelerating a Unified Strategy to Save Mothers, Newborns and Children". Cayetano, the blogger said, used the unattributed passages in her Senate speech, "The Status of the Philippines in Achieving the Millennium Development Goals."
Sangalang then went on to scrutinize another privilege speech delivered by Cayetano on World Environment Day, and "again, a crucial paragraph was unceremoniously lifted from the website of the United Nations Environment Programme, with nary an attribution."
"Practically speaking, this is plagiarism," Sangalang said in her blog
. "The sudden inclusion of attributions is an admission of plagiarism. If Pia Cayetano – law graduate, #7 in her class, cum laude in economics – can rephrase her speeches as well as correct them for lapses in attribution, so can Senate Majority Leader Tito Sotto."
"The Twitter-verse awaits her explanation," the blogger said.
"Citing authors and sources is part of the writing process I am happy to do because it shows the depth of research done," the senator said via Twitter.
"If at any time, I fail to attribute, I immediately make the necessary corrections and amends."
"Even in my personal work, I habitually attribute my sources. As an ex (example), see my blog re: impeachment mydailyrace.com/?p=1983
"I respect that and practice attributions in my Senate speeches since I often quote UN and other sources."
"I tweeted before, our intellectual property states that one’s literary work is protected from the time of creation."