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MANILA, Philippines – The former senatorial candidate of ex-President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo candidate turned out to be a critic of some of her decisions, as well as that of the Supreme Court. It is unclear, though, where the lawyer and her party stand on Chief Justice Renato Corona’s impeachment and the allegations against him.
In 2004, Cayetano ran under the pro-Arroyo coalition called Koalisyon ng Katapatan at Karanasan para sa Kinabukasan (K-4). At 38, she became the youngest woman elected in the history of the Philippine Senate.
But in 2006, then First Gentleman Mike Arroyo called the Cayetano siblings ungrateful. This stemmed from allegations of then Taguig Pateros Rep. Alan Peter Cayetano that the Arroyos kept a secret multi-million-dollar German bank account. Arroyo said Rep. Cayetano (who’s now also senator) attacked him even after he helped bankroll their political campaigns. Sen. Pia Cayetano later admitted receiving financial support from Arroyo but stood by her brother.
In 2010, Sen. Pia Cayetano ran for reelection under the Nacionalista Party of Sen. Manny Villar. She took her oath of office in June 2010 before Corona.
Education: BA Economics, UP; Bachelor of Laws, UP
Professional background: Founder of Maxi Group of Companies (retailer, distributor of educational toys, infant apparel and accessories); served as general counsel of Philweb Corp and worked in the legal and corporate affairs of Belle Corp and affiliates. She was also associate lawyer, Castillo, Laman, Tan and Pantaleon Law Offices (1992-1995)
Current term: 2010 to 2016
Eligible for reelection? No. Pia Cayetano is serving her second consecutive term at the Senate. Her first term spanned 2004 to 2010.
Political Party: Nacionalista Party (NP)
Cayetano is part of the NP bloc of Sen. Villar. The Philippine Daily Inquirer reported that other members include her brother Sen. Alan Peter Cayetano and Senators Joker Arroyo, Miriam Defensor-Santiago, Ferdinand Marcos Jr., and Loren Legarda.
Position aired and published on Corona and on the issues related to the Articles of Impeachment:
In February 2010, Cayetano was among 12 senators who signed a resolution “expressing the sense of the Senate” that then President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo should not make midnight appointments in the judiciary, like choosing the next chief justice. (Link to resolution: http://www.senate.gov.ph/lisdata/1356611981!.pdf)
Cayetano sided with 37 professors of UP Law who criticized SC Associate Justice Mariano del Castillo for plagiarism. The SC ordered the professors to explain why they should not be sanctioned for issuing a statement on the issue when a probe was underway.
In a statement, Cayetano said that plagiarism is a form of dishonesty that is taboo and frowned upon.
She said, “As the last bastion of justice, the SC is expected to set the highest standards of integrity, credibility and professionalism. Unfortunately, the high court failed in this respect when it allowed a clear case of plagiarism within its ranks to go unpunished.” – Rappler.com
Sources: Senate website, press statements of Sen. Cayetano, Philippine Star, Philippine Daily Inquirer, GMA News