JPE, Cayetano word war gets dirty

Posted at Jan 23 2013 06:41 PM | Updated as of Jan 24 2013 02:41 AM

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MANILA, Philippines – A word war between Senate President Juan Ponce Enrile and Sen. Alan Peter Cayetano went “down to the gutter” after Enrile said Cayetano’s father, the late Sen. Rene Cayetano, still owed him P37 million.

In a privilege speech, Cayetano castigated Enrile and his chief of staff, Gigi Reyes, for dragging him and his sibling, Sen. Pia Cayetano, in a word war over Enrile’s use of the Senate funds.

He again called for an independent audit of the Senate’s funds, particularly Enrile’s use of half a billion pesos in discretionary funds.

In response, Enrile pulled out a piece of paper and said Cayetano’s father still owed him P37 million for putting up a law office.

“Hanggang ngayon, hindi pa nababayaran ang utang niya na ginastos niya sa opisina namin na itinayo ko para mayroon siyang pampakain sa pamilya niya. P37 million po. Hanggang ngayon ay hindi namin sinisingil alang-alang lang sa pagsama sama namin,” he said.

Cayetano, however, said he did not know of any debt that his father owed Enrile.

“My father worked for every single centavo and it is unfair for you to bring that up. How can he explain when he’s dead?” he said.

He said that even if his father did owe Enrile money, the Senate President also owed the late Cayetano gratitude for putting up his law office.

“May utang na loob din kayo pero hindi namin siningil,” he said, pointing out that Enrile kicked his father out of the law firm when the latter ran for senator.

ANC, January 23, 2013