PMA closed; public advised not to panic

THE Philippine Military Academy (PMA) in Baguio City has closed its doors following standard security procedures.

PMA information Chief Lieutenant Colonel Reynaldo Balido confirmed the military camp has been closed to tourists since Wednesday, February 8, following the termination of peace talks by President Rodrigo Duterte with the Communist Party of the Philippines-New People's Army-National Democratic Front (CPP-NPA-NDF).

Balido said the closure of the academy is part of procedures of all military camps in the country when peace talks ceased. It has no connection to the Thursday (February 9) torching Philex Mining Corporation trucks.

The PMA official said the academy has not issued any statements in any social media sites debunking hoax advisories circulating the past days.

Balido added the closure of PMA is also part of the preparation for the upcoming weeklong Alumni Homecoming set next week. The homecoming will be highlighted by the parade of PMA classes.

He said this is to give the PMA graduates and their families’ time between and among themselves inside the camp.

On Friday, February 10, Tuba Mayor Ignacio Rivera suspended classes in the elementary level in Camps 3 and 4 for safety while blocking forces are after alleged rebel groups.

“We are safe here except for a reported shooting incident in Camp 4 around 7 p.m.,” Rivera said, as he confirmed police are still on standby along Kennon Road.

SunStar Baguio tried but failed to get updates from the police on the identity and whereabouts of the three suspects apprehended after the torching incident at Philex mines.

A tight-lipped police force and military issued no leads and updates on the case of the Philex truck burning.

Benguet Governor Crescencio Pacalso, meanwhile, was upset after he found out about the burning.

“Unfortunately, we had visitors on Wednesday and they were asking about peace. I told them we remain peaceful but still, the incident happened...Either they are members of NPA or not, they are just destroying the peace and order here in our province,” Pacalso said.

“They should know that our province is still one of the most peaceful places. We thought, we were already cleared, but what happened, they suddenly show up. I personally condemn what they have done,” Pacalso added.


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