Refuge in the Supreme Court (SC) was sought by the family of Cadet First Class Aldrin Cudia.
The cadet’s mother, Filipina, on Tuesday asked the High Court to order the Philippine Military Academy (PMA) to release the diploma of her son and give him his honorable dismissal.
She, together with her family, accompanied Cudia to the SC after filing a petition-in-intervention with the assistance of the Public Attorney’s Office (PAO).
Her son was dishonorably dismissed from the PMA for “lying” after he came late to class.
In an interview, Cudia said he would like to move on into the next chapter of his life.
He added that he would like to pursue his studies if the High Court gave him a chance to graduate.
Cudia said he is contemplating to study law.
The Manila Times obtained a complete set of his transcript of records and it shows that he racked up several “100” grades in his Conduct subjects in the PMA and majority of his grades from first year to fourth year were in the line of 90s and above.
The Cudia family want to the SC to plead that Cudia be allowed to graduate and for the PMA Honor Committee to uphold the original 8-1 voting on Cudia’s case, for the PMA to declare Cudia “not guilty” of violation of its Honor Code and for the PMA to restore Cudia’s benefits as a PMA cadet.
Cudia noted in his family’s petition the questionable change of vote of one of the members of the Honor Committee in a supposed attempt to pin down and harass the cadet.
A sworn statement executed by the Head of the Department of Naval Warfare of the PMA, Cmdr. Junjie Tabuada, attested to the fact that Cudia’s co-cadet, Cadet First Class Dalton Lagura had admitted to him that he (Lagura) changed his “not guilty” vote on Cudia after having been “pressured” by the rest of the Honor Committee members.
According to PAO chief Persida Acosta, the change of vote was against the rules of the Honor Code.
“The Honor Code should be implemented, applied and upheld with justice, human rights and dignity. Not mere honor, but justice,” Acosta said.
A member of the Catholic Church was appalled over the decision of the PMA to dismiss Cudia.
“Running priest” Fr. Robert Reyes also on Tuesday said the PMA’s decision to dismiss Cudia was unfair and the punishment that the cadet got was like a “death penalty.”
“Granting that there’s a case [against Cudia], the punishment that they gave was like death penalty for stealing a cookie,” Reyes added.
He said Cudia does not deserve such kind of treatment, noting that his case was still “debatable.”
On Tuesday, the priest together with the family of Cudia led “Run for Aldrin, Run for Justice” at the Rizal (Luneta) Park in Manila.
Reyes said Cudia “should be given his day in court.”
Recently, the PMA decided not to include Cudia in the list of PMA cadets who graduated on March 16, citing his violation of the academy’s Honor Code. JOMAR CANLAS and