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Fort Del Pilar, Baguio City
May 26, 2019

“Be humble, be teachable, be grateful, and always look at each other’s back.”

President Rodrigo Roa Duterte shared these four vital points which he believes are the traits that make a good junior officer of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) during his attendance to the commencement exercises of the Philippine Military Academy (PMA) in Baguio City, where he lauded the graduating class of the esteemed academy.

Speaking before the 261 graduating cadets of the PMA ‘Mabalasik’ Class of 2019, President Duterte reiterated that their graduation marks the start of an even bigger mission as they embark on a task to serve in their chosen branch of service and assume leadership roles in the country’s armed forces.

“Given this reality, I ask you to always remain faithful to your mission:  Be a good soldier who will serve the Constitution, protect the people, secure our sovereignty, and preserve the integrity of our national territory,” the Commander-in-Chief said.

He urged the graduating cadets to ‘always embody courage and loyalty’ as they pursue their noble careers in the military service. 

“As you leave the halls of this great and noble institution that is the Philippine Military Academy, may you, young idealistic graduates, strengthen your dedication and lasting peace that will be enjoyed by the future generation,” President Duterte reiterated. 

Moreover, the President gave his full confidence to the new breed of military officers who shall build the foundations of a better, safer, and more peaceful life for all Filipinos. 

“Serve your country well.  Die for your country if it need be.  Remember, the young Filipinos yet to come, the children and those who are now studying, huwag mong kalimutan ninyo ‘yan.  And if you think that the country is not run the way it is and if it will destroy your country, you should know what to do,” the President said. 

This year’s PMA class valedictorian is Cadet 1st Class Dionne Mae Umalla who hails from Ilocos Sur.  She is the fifth woman to have topped a graduating class since the PMA started accepting women in 1993. 

This year’s class name stands for ‘Mandirigma ng Bayan Lakas at Sarili Iaalay para sa Kapayapaan.’
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