Cudia will not graduate from PMA
BAGUIO CITY, Philippines – He lost his appeal.
Philippine Military Academy (PMA) cadet Aldren Jeff Cudia will not be graduating on March 16, as the institution decided to uphold the decision of the honors committee to dismiss him for violating the honor code.
The PMA announced on Tuesday, March 11, that its superintendent, Major General Oscar Lopez, signed the report "separating" Cudia from the academy on Monday.
Cudia, a candidate for class salutatorian, was ordered dismissed allegedly for having lied about his late dismissal from one class that made him late for the next. (READ: 2 minutes late for class, PMA cadet dismissed?)
He had appealed his dismissal, and his case has prompted a review of the PMA honor system by the Armed Forces leadership and the Commission on Human Rights.
Cadets at Fort del Pilar were ordered to ostracize Cudia after he supposedly broke the honor code of the academy and his family went to social media with it.
On Saturday, a Rappler report quoted sources from the PMA as saying that it was already known to them Cudia would not be among the graduates.
"We have long expected that," one of his classmates said, referring to Cudia not joining them in the "long gray line" next Sunday.
"He fought for his case thinking he would have a chance to make it to the top," Cudia's classmate said.
None of the diplomas that had been prepared as of last weekend bears his name.
During the welcome dinners for Siklab Diwa class on March 4, only 223 cadets were present. Cudia was the 224th member of the class.
Not the end for cadet
Former PMA superintendent Major Genereal Edgar Abogado already signed in February the separation order of Cudia following a decision by the PMA honor committee – a body composed entirely of students – to declare him guilty of violating the academy honor code when he supposedly lied about the reason he was late in one class.
Armed Forces chief General Emmanuel Bautista ordered a re-investigation, following public outcry when Cudia's family took their protest to social media.
Lopez recently replaced Abogado.
The PMA Honor Code implores cadets not to lie, cheat, steal or tolerate those among them who do so.
Cudia was expected to "resign honorably" like other cadets declared guilty of violating the code.
But Cudia proved different. He has waged a war against the powerful honor committee, whose members, he said, violated the code themselves. He filed a written appeal but the honor committee refused to re-open the case. (READ: PMA cadet fights back, gets support)
The posts of Cudia's family on Facebook became viral, giving the public a rare glimpse into otherwise confidential proceedings at the academy.
Lopez on Tuesday said Cudia can still get his savings from the academy. A cadet earns almost P30,000 per month.
It would not be an end for the separated cadet, Lopez said. Cudia's academic credits can be honored in other schools, he said.