PMA graduation rites to be virtual

BAGUIO CITY — Members of the Philippine Military Academy (PMA) graduating class of 2020 will receive their diplomas without their very proud parents and their love ones in attendance on May 22.

Even President Rodrigo Duterte will not attend. There is nothing final yet on who will be the guest of honor and speaker, said PMA spokesperson Captain Cherryl Tindog. 

Normally, the President, as the commander-in-chief of the Armed Forces, awards the Presidential Saber to the class topnotcher, the Vice President awards the Vice President’s Saber to the number 2 graduating cadet while commanders of the major service commands – Army,  Air Force and Navy award the Major Service Sabers to graduates topping the Army, Air Force and Navy courses. 

But not even major service commanders are sure to be present on the graduation rites of the members of MASIDLAWIN class of 2020 (Mandirigmang Isinilang ng may Dangal at Lakas Upang Maging Tanglaw ng Inang Bayan) added Tindol.

The graduation rites though will be livestreamed via the PMA’s official Facebook page.

Journalists are also not allowed to cover the yearly event, the PMA advised.  Even the presentation of the top ten graduates and awardees on May 20 will be virtual as members of the media were already asked Thursday to send their questions via SMS/ Viber and they will be answered by the topnotchers and other awardees on camera.

Tindog reiterated that PMA (Fort del Pilar), which shut down its doors to the public on March 16, remains closed and follows strict measures to prevent the spread of the coronavirus within the Academy and the community.