Another Gen. Garcia in the making, but this time nipped at the bud. What a waste... of our money! What kind of values do they teach there? Is the PMA really the Philippine Millionaire's Academy? With that disgusting 'mistah' culture that derails any efforts to eradicate the military ranks from scalawags / bandits-to-be? Better burn the whole thing down, before it produces any more of these epitomes of abject national embarrassment! Heck, the ROTC may even be able to produce better officers than these. /rant off Top PMA grad sent home by US academy for shoplifting By Jaime Laude The Philippine Star 11/24/2004 A young Army officer who graduated at the top of his class at the Philippine Military Academy (PMA) was sacked from a US military school and sent home in disgrace for alleged shoplifting. And for allegedly stealing a compact disc (CD) worth a measly $12.95, the military career of 2Lt. Rolly Joaquin, valedictorian of PMA Class 2004, now hangs in the balance as he was placed under arrest on his return here last Oct. 28 to face court martial. Army spokesman Maj. Bartolome Bacarro said Joaquin was dismissed from the US Army Infantry School at Fort Benning in Georgia where he had been sent for an officers training course. Joaquin reportedly removed a 50-cent discount tag from a sale item and attached it to a $12 CD that he purchased from a store there. "There was (a) sale in one of the stores and apparently, he interchanged the tag price of $0.50 attached to compact disc on sale and placed it over the $12.95 tag price on another CD which is not included in the sale," Bacarro said. He said Joaquin was monitored by the stores closed-circuit camera which led to his arrest. As topnotcher of his class, Joaquin received a study grant from the United States Military Assistance Group (JUSMAG) for the Basic Officers Course at Fort Benning. Joaquin was also the first among all PMA graduates to have delivered the valedictory address during their graduation early this year. "On October 26, the Philippine Army received an information from the JUSMAG... that (a) Filipino student of the Infantry Officer Basic Course held at Fort Benning is being sent back to the Philippines by the US Army Infantry School after having been apprehended for shoplifting," Bacarro told a news conference yesterday. He said Joaquin will be immediately restricted to quarters at Fort Bonifacio upon his arrival from the US. And if probable cause is established in an ongoing inquiry, Joaquin could be put on trial in a military tribunal for conduct unbecoming an officer, Bacarro said. "Independent from possible court-martial proceedings in violations of Articles of War 96 and... 97, subject officer can also be administratively charged under the (militarys) Efficiency and Separation Board," Bacarro said. The shoplifting case is the latest black eye for the Armed Forces following the controversy generated by the corruption trial of retired Maj. Gen. Carlos Garcia and an Army major who is under investigation for allegedly soliciting oral sex from military recruits. The latest scandals also focused on the quality of graduates produced by the countrys premier military institution. "Its not the quality of education at the PMA at question here, but rather it has something to do with personal character," Bacarro said in response to questions over PMA graduates. Joaquins case cropped up barely four days after a videotape of Army Maj. Ferdinand Ramos, a member of PMA Class 88, was shown on national television in an "compromising position" with an Army trainee. The military said the videotape would be used as evidence in filing the appropriate charges against Ramos. Ramos, a trainer assigned at the Armys Light Armor Brigade (LAB) in Capas, Tarlac, was also ordered restricted to quarters pending investigation of his case publicized by a certain Richard who claimed to be one of his victims. Bacarro said the LABs Provost Marshal would start conducting the investigation on Ramos to establish probable cause for another possible court martial. Bacarro downplayed the two latest controversies involving Army officers, saying they were "isolated" in the 70,000-strong command. He also assured the Army leadership will slap appropriate sanctions against erring officers. "The Army leadership would like to take this opportunity to assure the public that these matters will be addressed accordingly and that appropriate punishment shall be meted out commensurate to the offense committed," Bacarro said. "These two unfortunate incidents involving two Army officers (are) not representative of the entire Philippine Army as an organization, it is not representative of the more than 70,000 Army personnel. These are isolated incidents involving individual acts," Bacarro further said. With AFP report Wanna kill these ads? We can help!