Cardema to file charges vs Guanzon
Jess Diaz (The Philippine Star) - August 20, 2019 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — Disqualified Duterte Youth nominee Ronald Cardema yesterday vowed to file charges against Commission on Elections (Comelec) Commissioner Rowena Guanzon, including possibly an impeachment complaint.

“We will file charges against her for extortion,” he declared at the top of his voice in an interview on ANC.

When asked if he would also file an impeachment case, he said, “Yes, we might do that, if we get help from those who have grievances like us.”

He repeated his accusation that Guanzon allegedly demanded that he arrange for the appointment by President Duterte of an applicant for judge and another for a regional post in Iloilo in exchange for her voting for Duterte Youth’s party-list application in early 2016.

Guanzon has denied the allegation, saying she voted for approving the application of Cardema’s group.

Cardema claimed that his troubles with the Comelec commissioner started when he failed to work out the requested appointments.

He said the requests were made through a supposed Guanzon emissary.

“She is a congresswoman, and everybody in the Comelec and Congress know that she is the bagwoman of Commissioner Guanzon,” he said, but refused to name the alleged emissary.

When asked if he is so close to Duterte that one would ask him to arrange an appointment, he said, “I am not, but I, being a former official, know some people who are.” Cardema is a former head of the National Youth Commission.

He has urged the President to help his group in its fight with Guanzon, but presidential spokesman Salvador Panelo has said Duterte would not intervene.

“If they don’t want to help us, so be it,” Cardema said in his television interview.

Cardema also reiterated that his case should be within the jurisdiction of the House of Representatives Electoral Tribunal (HRET) and not the Comelec, which cancelled last Aug. 5 his Certificate of Nomination and Acceptance, in which he sought to replace his wife as the group’s first nominee.

No less than Comelec Chairman Sherif Abbas has declared that it should be resolved by the HRET, he said.

Guanzon brushed aside Cardema’s threat to file an impeachment case against her.

“Tell him to go ahead so he has to admit that he attempted to bribe me through someone else. Make my day,” she posted on Twitter yesterday.

She said Cardema’s allegations are baseless and out of spite.

“What is his ground? Betrayal of public trust? .... He has that option and his other option is to commit suicide in front of Comelec as he said he would,” Guanzon said in an interview.­ – With Sheila Crisostomo, Edith Regalado

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