Sunday, June 8, 2008

Remembering Another Kalinga Top Notcher

MANILA, March 30, 2006 - "Hard work and maturity" were the secrets of this mestizo from bekel, Benguet and Lubo Tanudan Kalinga for making it to the top of the graduating 2006 "Bagsay Lahi" Class of the Philippine National Police Academy (PNPA).

Today, Cadet Benjamin Balais along with 177 cadets will graduate with a Bachelor of Science degree in Public Safety at the PNPA, which is under the Philippine Public Safety College (PPSC).

President Arroyo is the guest honor and speaker at the graduation rites to be held at Camp Mariano CastaƱeda in Silang, Cavite. Security measures are expected to be strict to ensure peaceful and orderly commencement exercises.

Balais will receive the Presidential Kampilan Award from the President.

"My secret is hard work and maturity and my submissiveness to the duly constituted authorities here in the PNPA," the 25-year-old Balais told The STAR. He completed the four-year course in the camp.

Balais is among 162 graduates to join the PNP, while nine others will join the Bureau of Fire Protection (BFP) and five to Bureau of Jail Management and Penology (BJMP).

"I believe the PNP is in dire need of personnel to help polish its image. I promise to perform well as a police officer to be able to help the PNP regain the trust and confidence of the public," Balais said.

Balais pointed out that a "police officer should insulate (himself) from getting involved in politics" amid accusations that the PNP as well as the military had become politicized.

Just like other graduates, Balais said four years in the academy helped "instill the values of honor, discipline and excellence."

The PNPA cadet is the eldest of five children of Dimas Balais and Nora Dinamling. His 21-year-old brother, Dimas Jun, is a member of the Philippine Military Academy’s Mandala Class of 2006.

The PNPA is one of the seven schools and 15 regional training centers under the PPSC. It is headed by Senior Superintendent Balligi Agnanayon Tira.

From the number one spot, Balais is followed by Lemuel Josef Clarete of Upi, Maguindanao who will receive the Vice Presidential Kampilan Award. Third among the Top 10 PNPA graduates is Stephen George Antonio of Tadian, Mountain Province.

The 25-year-old Antonio, assistant editor of PNPA’s Kalasag magazine, will receive the Secretary of Interior and Local Government Kampilan Award.

The four female cadets in the Top 10 awardees are Neva Renchie De Chavez of Calapan City, Oriental Mindoro; Arlene Abuan of Calamba City, Laguna; Anabel Davocol of Balire, Tunga, Leyte; and Grade Jamila of Digos, Davao del Sur.

The Bagsay-Lahi Class of 2006 consists of 177 cadets who will graduate with a degree of Bachelor of Science in Public Safety. Twenty are female who will be given a rank of inspector in the PNP, Bureau of Jail and Bureau of Fire.

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