SENATE President Pro Tempore Ralph Recto said PMA cadets are “Iskolars ng Bayan” whose studies are shouldered by taxpayers.
In fact, Recto said, on a per student subsidy, they occupy the top tier in the country’s million-plus public college student population.
“Using the previous four years’ appropriations and reported number of cadets admitted, the cost of producing one PMA graduate is about P2.982 million,” Recto estimates.
“Compare this to the P507,000 to produce a UP graduate of a four-year course. (This is based on the UP System budget less the appropriations for PGH, which is a UP unit),” he added.
It is six times more expensive to produce one commissioned officer out of The Long Gray Line in Baguio than to produce one scientist out of the picket lines of Diliman, the senator said.
“As such, PMA cadets are ‘the people’s investments,’ to whom the defense of the Republic will later be entrusted. Bawat isa sa kanila ay mahalaga,” Recto stressed.
He added that if they will have to drop out, then it must be on their own steam, and not on a stretcher out of a hospital or morgue.
The PMA’s grief for losing one of its own should be translated into justice it must relentlessly pursue, Rector said.