Stolen grapes provoke wrath, crisis at PMA | Inquirer News

Stolen grapes provoke wrath, crisis at PMA

/ 05:42 AM July 24, 2020

Five pieces of grapes allegedly stolen by a fourth class female cadet from a refrigerator used by graduating students have plunged the Philippine Military Academy (PMA) into a crisis, as it decides whether to allow cadets to handle the investigation by themselves as tradition dictates, or allow the academic hierarchy to intervene.

The unnamed woman had already submitted her resignation from the PMA after admitting her guilt, with insiders lauding her decision that adheres to their honor code that says: “We cadets do not steal, cheat and lie nor tolerate those among us who do.”

However, an alumnus who asked for anonymity accused PMA superintendent Vice Adm. Allan Ferdinand Cusi of upsetting tradition by convening a board of seniors to review the case.


“To the shock of everybody, especially the cadet corps, the [PMA] superintendent caused the issuance of an order last July 7 that instead of resignation or dismissal, the cadet is meted only 51 demerits, 180 hours punishment tours and 180 confinement days inside barracks,” the alumnus said, adding that Cusi’s move has demoralized cadets and the PMA officers corps. He also warned that it “would surely open a wide door for more honor violations.”


‘Highly sacred’

Maj. Cherryl Tindog, PMA Public Affairs Office chief, agreed that the honor code remains “highly sacred” but added that the honor system and its body of policies and procedure should be “formative and developmental, rather than punitive and preventive of growth and edification or improvement.” All cadets are still under training, after all, she explained.

Tindog said a revised honor system in place since 2007 provided the necessary intervention for remediation and determination of an accused’s guilt by a majority, rather than a unanimous vote.

It also lists the separation from the academy of a guilty cadet by administrative dismissal rather than forced resignation, and the designation of the superintendent, rather than the honor committee, as final authority over the disposition of honor cases.

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TAGS: cadets, honor code, PMA, steal

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