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One man’s sacrifice

Ronald Cardema says he has made a personal sacrifice by withdrawing his nomination to represent Duterte Youth, a party-list organization, at the House of Representatives.

One man’s sacrifice

The notice, received by the Commission on Elections last week, said Cardema withdrew because of the public harassment he had experienced from Comelec Commissioner Rowena Guanzon.

“With all humility I withdraw from my nomination to sacrifice myself for our party-list so that the Comelec can immediately release the Certificate of Proclamation of the Comelec-approved succeeding nominee and to give justice to the votes of 350,000 Filipinos whom we desire to immediately serve with their needed medical assistance, requested patriotic projects, and activities for nation-building,” Cardema said.

“It is my prayer that this personal sacrifice be accepted. May this be viewed as a fresh start for the Comelec and the pro-government Duterte Youth party-list, partnering towards nation building.”

Cardema's saga has been protracted, and this appears to be a fitting, rightful end to an episode that has only exposed one man's hubris, wasted an agency's time and resources, and attempted to mislead a young nation starved for worthy role models.

Cardema, once the chairman of the National Youth Commission, did not resign his executive post despite being identified with the party-list organization. Instead he fielded others, including his wife, as nominees of the group. But when Duterte Youth won, he filed a petition to substitute the nomination despite the glaring fact that he was 34 years old. The law says representatives of the youth sector should be between 25 and 30 years old on election day.

For a while, Cardema tried to skirt the law by claiming he represented not only the youth, but young professionals.

These arguments did not fly with Guanzon, who led the division in rejecting Cardema's petition. When even a word war with the commissioner proved more hilarious than effective, Cardema appeared, finally, to give up—or, in his own words, to make the ultimate sacrifice.

Then again, what is a sacrifice to one person can be folly to the rest of us. Instead of being a sterling example to the youth, the not-so-young Cardema showed us plain arrogance and attempted to curry favor from his political masters hoping they would give him what he wanted as a reward for his loyalty.

In the end, he was loyal only to himself.

Cardema's face-saving sacrifice is nothing but great relief for the rest of us, young and old alike. 

Topics: Duterte Youth , Ronald Cardema , House of Representatives , Comelec , National Youth Commission
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