Sotto apologizes to Kennedy family but denies plagiarizing speeches

(Updated 3:45 p.m.) Senate Majority Floor Leader Vicente Sotto III on Tuesday apologized for upsetting the Kennedy family but maintained that he did not plagiarize parts of his speeches.

In a privilege speech on Tuesday, Sotto answered the allegations made against him by 37 individuals who filed an ethics complaint against him earlier in the day for alleged plagiarism.

He reiterated that he never claimed parts of his speech as his own and that he always said he got them from other sources. "Wala po akong inangkin so papaano po ako mag-a-apologize ng plagiarism eh wala po akong plinagiarize... sinabi ko ngang hindi akin... para hong pinagpiplead guilty ako sa murder eh ang dapat charge physical injuries," he said.

Sotto said his accusers are still basing their allegation on the draft copy of his speech where his blanket attribution was not yet included.

"Maliwanag po doon sa tatlong turno en contra speeches ko [na] ilang ulit ko pong sinabi and the journal will bear me out wala po ako sinabi dun na akin yun," he said.

"Maliwanag na kontra pa nga ang ginamit. Sinabi ko na lahat ng sinabi ko sa mediko, agham at kung saan-saan ay hindi galing sa akin eh ang plagiarism to steal and pass off ideas or words of another as one's own without crediting the source," he added.

As for the part of his speech which turned out to be lifted from the speech of the late US senator Robert F. Kennedy, he said it was shared with him by an American pastor for inspiration.

"It appears that the Kennedy family has been misinformed to get them to say something about me," he said.

During that time, he said he was not aware it was Kennedy's so he and his staff decided to translate it and use it to end his speech. "I did not steal it or claim that it was mine. The worst thing that you could probably say is that I copied it from the text of a friend. I didn't really know [where] it came from," he said.

"Kung sa tingin nila, ng Kennedy family, kinopya ko pwede sapagkat kinopya ko nga dun sa text ‘yun. But copying or imitation is the highest form of flattery. But if it upsets the Kennedy family, well then I'm sorry but that is not the intention we had when we used it," he added.

The office of Kerry Kennedy, daughter of the former senator, in a letter chastised Sotto for "his unethical, unsanctioned theft of Robert Kennedy's intellectual property and the intellectual property of all those whose work he has plagiarized." But Sotto maintained that people are just being manipulated into cornering him for his stand against the controversial Reproductive Health (RH) bill.

"When the right time comes and when I have enough evidence, I will expose the people behind this na nagmamanipula nito...pati mga kababayan natin sa academe namamanipula nila," he said.

He noted, however, that he will not change his objections against the measure.

"You can call me names, you can mock me, you can accuse me of anything under the sun but I will not change my position and I will always be against the distribution of contraceptives, condoms, IUDs...I will always be against abortion. I will remain steadfast and will stand firm in my position as long as I live," he said.

– KG/RSJ, GMA News

Loading...

Editor’s note:Yahoo Philippines encourages responsible comments that add dimension to the discussion. No bashing or hate speech, please. You can express your opinion without slamming others or making derogatory remarks.

  • First China air force drills in 'far offshore' Pacific
    First China air force drills in 'far offshore' Pacific

    China's air force has carried out its first ever military drill over the western Pacific Ocean, state media said, highlighting Beijing's growing military reach. Several aircraft from China's People's Liberation Army (PLA) on Monday flew over the ocean via the Bashi Channel, which runs between Taiwan and the Philippines, the official Xinhua news agency said. "This is the first time that the PLA Air Force conducted such drills in an airspace far offshore from Chinese coastlines," Xinhua cited …

  • Shorter hours for rail lines tomorrow
    Shorter hours for rail lines tomorrow

    The Metro Rail Transit (MRT), Light Rail Transit (LRT) and the Philippine National Railways (PNR) will have shorter hours tomorrow for the replacement of defective railroad tracks during the Holy Week. …

  • Noy increases allowances for cops, soldiers
    Noy increases allowances for cops, soldiers

    President Aquino has signed a joint congressional resolution raising the daily subsistence allowance for both members of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) and the Philippine National Police (PNP). Presidential spokesman Edwin Lacierda said Aquino signed last March 27 the merged Joint Resolution 2 of the Senate and Joint Resolution 26 of the House of Representatives. Speaking to reporters, Lacierda yesterday said the daily allowances of police officers and soldiers were raised from P90 …

  • Oil firms raise gas prices today
    Oil firms raise gas prices today

    This year’s Holy Week break will be accompanied by an increase in local pump prices after oil companies announced yesterday a P1.10 per liter hike for gasoline and P0.60 per liter for diesel effective today. “Phoenix Petroleum Philippines will increase the prices of gasoline by P1.10 per liter and diesel by P0.60 per liter effective 6 a.m. of March 31, 2015 to reflect the movements in the prices of refined petroleum products in the international market,” said Phoenix Petroleum, an independent …

  • DFA denies dropping Phl claim to Sabah
    DFA denies dropping Phl claim to Sabah

    The Philippines has never offered to drop its Sabah claim in exchange for Malaysia’s support for Manila’s arbitration case against China over the West Philippine Sea issue, the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) said yesterday. “In the context of our friendly bilateral relations, our two countries have been for years exchanging ways on how to address the issue of the extended continental shelf (ECS) in the South China Sea,” Foreign Affairs spokesman Charles Jose said in explaining the DFA’s …

  • Pagcor remits record high P5 B to national treasury
    Pagcor remits record high P5 B to national treasury

    The Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corp. (Pagcor) has remitted P5 billion in cash dividends to the National Treasury, fully settling all its arrears incurred in the last several years. Pagcor chairman and chief executive officer Cristino Naguiat Jr. said with this year’s remittance, the state-owned gaming firm has fully settled all remaining arrears in cash dividends that were incurred by the previous administration since 2005. Pagcor’s cash dividends to the National Treasury under its …

  • Maysak moves closer to Phl
    Maysak moves closer to Phl

    The typhoon with international name Maysak slightly accelerated as it moved closer to the Philippines yesterday, threatening to dump rains over eastern Luzon this weekend, the state weather bureau said. Rene Paciente, senior weather forecaster of the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA), said Maysak was spotted at 2,175 kilometers east of Mindanao as of 1 p.m. yesterday. Paciente said based on their latest forecast, Maysak is likely to affect …

  • Phl gets P2-B climate projects from Germany
    Phl gets P2-B climate projects from Germany

    The Philippines is getting 41 million euros or around P2 billion from the International Climate Initiative (ICI) of Germany that will fund 10 bilateral projects to address the impact of climate change. Climate Change Commission (CCC) vice chairman Lucille Sering yesterday met with Norbert Gorissen – head of the International Climate Finance of the German Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation, Building and Nuclear Safety – to discuss the projects, some of which will be …

POLL

Should Aquino be held accountable over the Mamasapano operations?

Loading...
Poll Choice Options