Duterte Youth's Cardema begins attending meetings for incoming solons

RG Cruz, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Jun 06 2019 06:18 PM | Updated as of Jun 06 2019 06:27 PM

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MANILA - Despite an unresolved substitution issue, Duterte Youth Party-list chairman Ronald Cardema had attended the meetings of the Party-list Coalition Foundation in the House of Representatives regarding the 18th Congress Speakership race.

Cardema attended the bloc’s meeting at the Batasan Pambansa on June 4 and May 23 in Ortigas with congressmen seeking the speakership: Marinduque Rep. Lord Alan Velasco, incoming Leyte Rep. Martin Romualdez and Taguig Pateros Rep.-elect Alan Peter Cayetano.

The Commission on Elections (Comelec) on Tuesday said it accepted the Duterte Youth Party-list’s petition to name Cardema as one of its nominees in the lower chamber.

Party List Coalition Foundation President, 1PACMAN Rep. Mikee Romero explained that the group Cardema represents has been proclaimed.

Romero, however, said the matter of who sits as the group’s Representative in Congress will be up to the Comelec.

Comelec Commissioner Rowena Guanzon on Tuesday maintained that while Duterte Youth has indeed been proclaimed, it still has no representative in Congress. 

“Duterte Youth will not have a representative in the House of Representatives until the disqualification petition is resolved, even after June 30. Comelec has jurisdiction over the disqualification petition against Cardema. Meantime, no representative can sit. That is fair, isn't it?” she said.

Guanzon cast the lone dissenting vote to the Minute Resolution that gave due course to Cardema’s bid to substitute. 

“His substitution is not yet granted because there is a pending petition or opposition on the ground that he is over 30 yrs old and cannot be a rep of a youth sector party list," she said.

Guanzon added that a hearing regarding Cardema’s substitution will be announced soon. 

“Only his application was given due course. He is not declared a substitute. A hearing on the DQ petition will be set soon," she said.