SEVEN women soldiers graduated on top of the 140-member class that underwent the Officer Candidate Courses (OCCs); only two from their male counterparts made it to the top.
The 140 graduates of the OCCs were honored on Monday by President Benigno Aquino 3rd, Defense Secretary Voltaire Gazmin and chief of staff Gen. Emmanuel Bautista during simple ceremonies at the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) theatre in Camp Aguinaldo.
Receiving the Presidential Saber were Probationary Second Lt. (P/2LT.) Mary Jean Cabillete, Philippine Army (PA); P/2LT. Kristyl May Beatingo, Philippine Air Force (PAF); and Probationary Ensign (P/ENS.) Vanessa Katrina Tulang, Philippine Navy (PN).
The Secretary of National Defense Saber was awarded to P/2LT. Shiela Mae Enderez, PA; P/2LT. John Red Honrales, PAF; and P/ENS. Tiffany Ann Palmares, PN.
The Chief of Staff Saber, on the other hand, was awarded to P/2LT. Mike Vergel Conception, PA; P/2LT. Janna Ontong, PAF; and P/ENS. Eunice Fe Sabado, PN.
After the graduation ceremony, the 55 graduates from the Army, 40 from the Navy and 45 from the Air Force took their oath as regular military officers before General Bautista.
“The AFP that you are joining today is in the midst of a transformation. Now, you all have the responsibility of shaping and leading this transformation, in the spirit of the vision and renewed call to reform inspired by our President,” Bautista said.
“Take pride in the uniform that you wear, and in the patriotic duty that you will perform as protector of the people and of the State, in the attainment of our vision of being a world-class armed forces, source of national pride; and in our commitment to winning just and lasting peace for our nation,” he added.
William B. Depasupil