AS FAR as the original nominees of Duterte Youth are concerned, they already appear to be off the hook.
This was according to the Commission on Elections (Comelec), saying there is no issue on the withdrawal of the nominees of Duterte Youth party-list.
“If you file a withdrawal of your own nomination then you’ve already withdrawn. Nobody can force you to remain a nominee,” said Comelec spokesman James Jimenez in an interview.
“Anyone, I think, can withdraw anytime because, again, it cannot be forced unto you. Representation in Congress is ultimately voluntary,” he added.
Jimenez issued the clarification amid the continued controversy surrounding the last minute application for substitution filed by former National Youth Commission (NYC) chair Ronald Cardema to become Duterte Youth’s nominee.
This was after Cardema’s wife and Duterte Youth’s first nominee, Ducielle Marie Suarez, withdrew her acceptance to the nomination of the group, along with the four other nominees of the party-list.
Jimenez said this means that the issue shall remain only on whether the substitution bid should be given due course as well as on the qualifications of Cardema as a youth sector nominee.
“The question really is if a substitution will really be allowed. As of this moment, there has been no order issued yet,” said the poll official.
“I think the allegations of age is one of the issues of the complainants so that will have to be settled too,” added Jimenez.
To note, over 10 petitions opposing Cardema’s attempt to become a substitute nominee of Duterte Youth have already been filed. (HDT/SunStar Philippines)