Cardema DQ victory for genuine representation, says groups

Aug. 07, 2019

DAVAO CITY, Philippines — The cancellation of Ronald Gian Cardema’s nomination as first nominee of the Duterte Youth Party-list is welcomed by youth activists as a step towards finding youth representation in government.

The Commission on Elections (Comelec) First Division ruled unanimously on Tuesday to void Cardema as representative of the Duterte Youth.

The Division pointed out that according to election rules, the age limit to be a youth representative is 25 to 30 years old. Cardema, the former Chairperson of the National Youth Commission, is overaged at 34.

Kabataan Party-list, the first youth party-list to enter into Congress, said in a statement that this decision is an initial victory for the youth.

“We welcome COMELEC’s decision to grant the petition and considers it an initial victory of the youth in the fight for genuine representation.”

Meanwhile, the petitioner for Cardeman’s disqualification, Emilio Marañon said, “Hopefully, this decision will be the first step towards the reform of the party-list system, that is, to bring it back it to the truly marginalized and underrepresented sector.”

Cardema was a last-minute substitute for the first nominee of the Duterte Youth. The group also withdrew all its nominees to make Cardema the sole nominee.

Cardema ran on a platform red-baiting the Makbayan bloc and did not elaborate on their youth agenda.

Duterte Youth won one seat in the May 13 election, but its declaration was withheld pending Marañon’s protest.

But the party-list still submitted Cardema as its first nominee Wednesday. (

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