Dingdong Dantes, former commissioner of the National Youth Commission, criticized his successor Ronald Cardema for his last-minute substitution appeal as nominee of the Duterte Youth Partylist.
Cardema filed this petition to the Commission on Elections despite him being legally over-aged to do so.
Dantes noted in a series of tweets that Cardema should have resigned from NYC beforehand if he aspired to be a congressman in the first place.
“Pwede bang nagising na lang siya isang araw at nag-decide na trip niya? Maaari kasing nagamit ang ahensya upang magkaroon siya ng unfair advantage noong kampanya,” he said.
Clearly, if the petition will be granted, parang na-railroad ang democratic process of choosing the rightful representative.I think we all agree that the young people should never—ever— be disenfranchised, especially in governance.But with the Youth Chief getting into this?Teka.
— Dingdong Dantes (@iamdongdantes) May 20, 2019
As the incumbent NYC chair, Cardema is jeopardizing the youth’s representation in governance due to his insistence for a congressional seat.
“If the petition will be granted, parang na-railroad ang democratic process of choosing the rightful representative. I think we all agree that the young people should never—ever— be disenfranchised, especially in governance. But with the youth chief getting into this? Teka,” Dantes said.
“Nakakalungkot na bilang pangunahing representante ng kabataan ay lumalabas na nakikisali siya sa pagabuso at pag-circumvent sa Party-List system,” he added.
Sarah Elago of Kabataan Partylist previously raised the concerns on Cardema’s move to substitute his wife Ducielle Marie D. Suarez as Duterte Youth’s first nominee, which was previously denounced due to alleged conflict of interest.
According to Comelec Resolution No. 3307-A, a partylist nominee can only be substituted by the nominee that is next in line. Partylists can name up to 5 nominees.
If the party is related to the youth sector, the nominee should also only be between 25 and 30 years old.
Cardema is 33 years old if his birth date on Facebook is correct.
Palace said that Cardema should have left his post as NYC chair given his request.
Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo considered him resigned on May 12, the day he filed the petition.
“We deem that Mr. Cardema has already abandoned his present position because his act of filing the petition absolutely reflects his intention to relinquish his office and exposes his desire to serve the government in a different capacity,” Panelo said.
For Dantes, being an NYC chair is already a great position to serve the youth.
“At sa’yo Mr. Cardema, if you really want to serve the young people, you are already in the best position to do so,” Dantes said.
“Tanungin mo si Chairman Aiza Seguerra, whom I respect so much,” he said. Aiza Seguerra was NYC chair from 2016 until she resigned in 2018.
The Kapuso personality went on and called on the newly elected senators to look back on the real purpose of having a partylist system.
“Ipagtanggol at palakasin po sana niyo ang mekanismong nagbibigay espasyo sa mga sektor na marinig ang kanilang mga boses.Wag niyo po sana hayaang masalaula ito ng mga taong uhaw o nalulunod sa kapangyarihan,” Dantes said.