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Renounce 'tongpats,' Aquino tells 202 new police inspectors

President Benigno Aquino III is seen in a rare photo op being flanked by the two men, both close to him, seen as causing the perpetual split in his Cabinet--Vice President Jejomar Binay and DILG Secretary Mar Roxas. The three officials attended Monday morning's graduation at the police academy. MALACANANG PHOTO BUREAU
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MANILA, Philippines - President Benigno Aquino III on Monday told 202 new police inspectors to renounce illegal activities like “tongpats” as they graduated from the Philippine National Police Academy at Camp Castaneda, Silang, Cavite. And, in a move that may have taken a leaf from the controversy rocking the Philippine Military Academy with the non-graduation of the class salutatorian over an Honor Code violation, Mr. Aquino pardoned all police cadets with standing sanctions and in confinement, allowing them to continue their academic work and eventually graduate too.

The pardon was announced towards the end of the graduation rites by PNPA director Chief Supt. Noel Constantino: “The President has just granted pardon to all PNPA cadets with outstanding sanctions and punishments and in confinement,” Constantino said.
He, however, did not say how many cadets were pardoned—meaning, they will soon be allowed to continue their academic obligations and services in the academy for commissioning into the service.
Aquino said in his speech before the newly commissioned officers, members of the “Mandilaab” Class of 2014 of the PNPA, “Hindi kayo ang magpapasimuno ng tongpats. Dapat magiging kakambal sa inyong serbisyo ang tiwala ng bawat Pilipino [You shall not be involved in committing graft. Your service should be marked with the trust of each Filipino]. ”

Also present at the PNP rites were Vice President Jejomar Binay and Interior and Local Government Secretary Manuel “Mar” Roxas II.
Insp. Glenn Santelices, a native of Bicol who topped his class, challenged his classmates to serve faithfully and with integrity the Filipino people. “Hindi kami naririto sa akademya para magpayaman. Ang ‘Mandilaab’ Class 2014 ay hindi lamang magagaling at matitino kundi nag-aalab ding manglingkod sa bayan nang tapat at may pagtitiwala [We are not here to enrich ourselves. The Mandilaab Class 2014 is composed not just of bright and skilled men and women but also people ready to serve the country faithfully],” Santelices said in his valedictory address.
He also emphasized the PNPA’s unwavering commitment to their Code of Honor, evoking recollections of the PMA controversy stirred by the dismissal of former cadet Jeff Aldrin Cudia of PMA “Siklab Diwa” Class of 2014-- for lying on why he was 2 minutes late in one academic class.
Santelices received the Presidential Kampilan Award from Aquino.
Two Cagayanos grabbed the second and third spots of the class. Insp. Bryan John Dayag Baccay received the Vice Presidential Kampilan Award from Binay and Insp. Allan Benedict Ramos Rosete received the DILG Kampilan Award from Roxas.
According to Roxas, 187 of the new officers opted to stay with the PNP; 10 opted to be assigned at the Bureau of Fire Protection (BFP) and five, to the Bureau of Jail Management and Penology (BJMP)/

According to Constantino, the Mandilaab class comprises the last men and women (15 in the class) from the 16,557 applicants back in 2009.
“Because of the rigid screening only 259 or 1.6 percent were left of the 16,557 applicants. But because we follow a  quota, there was a further screening and we ended up with only 202—they are now our graduates and new police inspectors,” said Constantino.