At least one hazing case has been recorded in the Philippine Military Academy (PMA) this year despite its so-called “zero tolerance” for such activities.
PMA superintendent Maj. Gen. Nonato Peralta Jr. admitted that one case of hazing was reported to his office this year. While he described the case as “very light,” it led to a cadet’s discharge from the PMA.
Peralta, however, did not reveal the identities of those involved in the lone hazing case. He said the last case was reported sometime in April or May this year.
“To be honest, we have only one case that happened this year and we are anticipating, we are strongly confident that in the coming years, it (hazing) will be gone,” he said.
“The PMA has zero tolerance for hazing pursuant to the human rights advocacy of the Armed Forces of the Philippines,” Peralta affirmed.
According to him, the lone hazing case recorded this year involved hitting a cadet’s hand that made swell.
“We are very stern, very strict. The last case was very light but a cadet was discharged, the parents (of the victim) were told to file criminal charges,” Peralta said.
Other cadets were also sanctioned in connection with the case under the principle of command responsibility.
But Peralta said there has been much change in the culture of the cadet corps in the PMA.
“This is very far (from the previous years)… we can say that there (has been) big change, radical change,” he said.
Last year, Peralta said, 25 hazing cases were reported in the PMA, which is the primary source of officers of the AFP.