Blaming 'corrupt' Guanzon, Cardema withdraws as Duterte Youth nominee

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Sep 16 2019 12:21 PM | Updated as of Sep 16 2019 02:26 PM

Disgraced former youth commissioner Ronald Cardema and Comelec commissioner Rowena Guazon. File

MANILA- Former youth commissioner Ronald Cardema has withdrawn his nomination as representative of the Duterte Youth party-list, blaming poll commissioner Rowena Guanzon over the development.

Cardema cited the supposed "public harassment" of Commission on Elections' Guanzon as the reason for his withdrawal, which he filed last Friday.

"It is now public knowledge that the camp of the said commissioner requested and forced favors from us by making us believe we needed her signature in our registration..." Cardema said in his notice of withdrawal.

The development comes a month after the poll body canceled the 34-year-old Cardema's nomination as representative of the Duterte Youth party-list because the law requires youth representatives to be from 25 to 30 years old. Cardema appealed the ruling.

Guanzon has been vocal about her opposition to Cardema's nomination and has accused the latter of being behind death threats against her and her family.

In a tweet on Monday, Guanzon blasted Cardema's notice of withdrawal as "stupid."

"Ako pa rin [d]aw ang dahilan. S T U P I D," she said.

The former youth commissioner earlier asked President Rodrigo Duterte for help as he accused Guanzon of extortion.

The poll commissioner, however, denied Cardema's bribery claims.

While Cardema said he had "strong faith" that the Comelec en banc would side with his appeal and "protect us now from the harassment of their corrupt colleague," the former youth commissioner said he would still withdraw his nomination as a "personal sacrifice."

"It is my prayer that this personal sacrifice be accepted and proceed now to the immediate release of the Certificate of Proclamation of the succeeding nominee of the Duterte Youth Party-List," he said.