PNPA cadet’s father on son’s death: It’s the will of Allah
ZAMBOANGA CITY, Zamboanga del Sur, Philippines — On Fathers’ Day, Police Sgt. Brainer Sakkam had to bury his 22-year-old son, Fourth Class Cadet Rafael Aminin Sakkam, who would have wanted to become a policeman like him.
Rafael just finished an afternoon road run on June 7 as part of his training at the Philippine National Police Academy (PNPA) in Silang, Cavite province, when he collapsed and became unconscious reportedly due to heatstroke, his father said.
Rafael was rushed to Qualimed Hospital in Sta. Rosa City, Laguna province, where he was confined in the intensive care unit. But barely two weeks later, on June 18, at 6:01 p.m., he succumbed to cardiac arrest.
“It hurts so much to lose a son but we can’t do anything about it. In our faith as Muslims, it’s only Allah who knows, so we accept it wholeheartedly, no matter how hard,” said Sakkam, who just came from an evening prayer on Sunday, after the burial rites in Barangay Mampang, about 18 kilometers from their house in Barangay Sinunuc here.
Sakkam also belied the report that earlier came out of the Inquirer, saying that his son collapsed on June 7, four days after he entered the PNPA, and not on June 3.
The June 3 date, during which the PNPA was holding its reception rites that featured rigorous exercises involving new cadets, was based on a report issued by the Philipine National Police in Calabarzon (Cavite, Laguna, Batangas, Rizal and Quezon).
The Calabarzon police, in a report on Sunday, said: that “on June 3 … while undergoing reception rites, subject cadet [Rafael] bogged down due to difficulty in breathing and was initially treated at the PNPA dispensary.” The report then went on to say that the cadet was taken to Qualimed Hospital on June 7.
But the father said it was the heatstroke that caused his son to be rushed to the hospital on June 7“I still managed to watch him in the hospital,” said Sakkam. “He was unconscious in the first few days, but after a few days, he can already move. But it was the will of Allah that his life was only up to there. We accept it, especially because he was taken when he was trying to reach his dream to become a policeman,” Sakkam said.
He said it was really Rafael’s dream to follow in his footsteps and become a policeman like him. In his younger days, the boy was always tailing him around, the father said.
“He was a consistent honor student,” he said. “Even before he planned to join the police force, he already prepared himself physically because I told my children that joining the police force would not be easy. My son was medically fit to join the police force and passed the PNPA examination,” Sakkam said in Tagalog.
He said Rafael finished his grade school at Sinunuc Elementary School, his high school at Zamboanga City West High and his senior high school at Western Mindanao State University. He was already taking a Bachelor of Science in Criminology course at Southern City College here when he decided to take the PNPA exams and passed.
Rafael was the third of Sakkam’s five children. His eldest is a police lieutenant, also a product of the PNPA.
Sakkam said the family had already accepted Rafael’s fate. “We don’t question the institution,” Sakkam said. “We are a family of police officers. My son was aware of the challenges he was to face before entering the police force. He was physically fit. In our Muslim beliefs, Allah decided his fate. Also as Muslims, we don’t accept autopsies,” he added.
Rafael’s mother, Hulmah, agreed with him. “It pains us to find out that my son is gone ahead of us, but it’s Allah’s will and we respect it,” she said.
The family appealed to netizens to accept what happened and refrain from making harsh comments.
Family members also expressed their gratitude to PNPA officers and personnel, for attending to Rafael’s needs, for rushing him to the hospital and spending over P1 million for his medication.
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