Amid plagiarism rap, CBCP leaders back Sotto, JPE

By Ira Pedrasa, ABS-CBNnews.com

Posted at Nov 14 2012 04:58 PM | Updated as of Nov 15 2012 07:11 AM

MANILA, Philippines - Two leaders of the Catholic Bishops' Conference of the Philippines (CBCP) praised Senate President Juan Ponce Enrile and Senator Vicente “Tito” Sotto III for their fight against the reproductive health (RH) bill.

In an interview with Radio Veritas, CBCP Episcopal Commission on Family and Life Executive Secretary Fr. Melvin Castro said: “Isang tunay na paghanga sa katatagan sa prinsipyo sa pangangalaga sa buhay at pamilya ang pinakikita kapwa nina Senador Sotto at Senate President Enrile.”

He said the criticisms hurled against the two, specifically on the plagiarism issue against Sotto, means the pro-RH bill advocates are getting desperate.

“Sa gitna ng mga pagbatikos at pangungutya sa kanilang pagkatao ay lalo lamang pinakikita ng mga nagsusulong ng RH bill na desperado na sila, na handa nilang gawin ang lahat, makasira man sa kanilang kapwa tao basta maipasa lang ang RH bill.”

CBCP Episcopal Commission on Bioethics chairman and Malolos Bishop Jose Oliveros also said the advocates are going the trial by publicity route to ruin the credibility of Sotto.

“Trial by publicity yan. Ginagawa nila ang lahat para ang mga nag-oopose sa RH bill ay hindi paniwalaan. Gayunman, I admired Sotto’s determination and his stand against RH bill. Kahit na sinisiraan siya na yun pala naman ay ina-acknowledege niya sa kanyang nakasulat na speech yung mga pinanggalingan ng kanyang ideas, that is good,” he also told Radio Veritas.

He said he will pray for Sotto in order that he will not lose confidence in fighting the controversial bill.

Meanwhile, Oliveros lambasted President Benigno Aquino III for being onion-skinned.

He said Aquino should accept criticisms as constructive suggestions for his administration.

“Siyempre ang simbahan is always in a critical collaboration with the government at kung halimbawa may napapansin man ang ilang mga Obispo sa kanya na hindi tama siyempre sasabihin yun. Gaya na lamang sa isyu ng RH bill na malinaw na labag sa katuruan ng Simbahan dahil imoralidad lamang ang idudulot nito,” Oliveros added.

Aquino on Tuesday launched a tirade against the Catholic Church for allegedly criticizing him at every turn.

He said leaders of other religious groups are easier to talk to.
 
"'Pag si Brother Eddie [Villanueva] ang tumawag, sila Bishop Leo [Alconga] at saka iba pa, sila Bishop Dan [Balais, at] kung sinu-sino pang mga kaibigan natin, minsan napapag-isip ako: Bakit napakadaling kausap nitong mga kababayan nating ito? At kung minsan naman po, kabahagi ako ng simbahan, bubukas pa lang ho ang bibig ko kini-criticize na ako," he said.

"So siguro sila ang magbibigay ng pagkakataong mapatunayan kung Kristiyano ako. So nakakagalak ho talagang nakikita (ko) kayong lahat dito, nakakasama sa pananampalataya, at sa pagtitiwala sa kapangyarihan ng pagdadasal,” Aquino said in his speech during the opening day of the Asia for Christ Movement (AFCM) Mission Congress held at the PICC. -- with a report from Willard Cheng, ABS-CBN News