MOST Filipinos continue to trust and approve of the country’s top officials, the latest Ulat ng Bayan survey from Pulse Asia released Friday said.
Despite public outrage over the death of several teenagers in police anti-drug operations and allegations of the President’s hidden wealth, Duterte was able to retain majority approval and trust ratings in the survey conducted from Sept. 24 to 30, with face-to-face interviews with 1,200 adults nationwide.
Eight out of 10 respondents said they approve of the President, and only 7 percent expressed their disapproval. Fourteen percent were undecided.
Respondents from Mindanao and the class E income group gave Duterte his highest approval ratings at 92 percent and 86 percent, respectively.
Some 80 percent of those surveyed said they trusted Duterte, while only 6 percent said they did not.
The biggest trust scores for Duterte came from his home region of Mindanao at 93 percent and from respondents who belong to the class E income group at 85 percent.
Also enjoying majority approval and trust scores, albeit lower, were Vice President Leni Robredo (57 percent and 55 percent, respectively) and Senate President Aquilino Pimentel III (55 percent and 52 percent, respectively).
Faring less well were House Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez (47 percent and 49 percent, respectively) and Supreme Court Chief Justice Maria Lourdes Sereno (43 percent and 44 percent, respectively).
While the performance and trust ratings of the President and the vice president were essentially unchanged between June and September 2017—other top national government officials experienced marked movements in their own ratings both at the national level and across geographic areas and socio-economic classes, the polling firm said.
Among the key developments that dominated the headlines in the days leading up to the survey period were the Senate Blue Ribbon Committee’s investigation into the shipment of illegal drugs worth P6.4 billion that slipped through the Bureau of Customs, the death of minors at the hands of Caloocan City police and claims by Senator Antonio Trillanes IV regarding Duterte’s alleged questionable wealth.
The nationwide survey, conducted after Duterte issued Proclamation No. 319 declaring Sept. 21 as a National Day of Protest, had sampling error margins at ±3 percent at the 95 percent confidence level.
The Pulse Asia survey was markedly different from the Social Weather Stations survey that showed an 18-point decline in President Duterte’s approval rating and a 15-point drop in his trust rating.
The same survey showed most Filipinos are satisfied with Robredo’s performance.
Robredo’s net satisfaction rating stayed good, at +41 in September, up by 5 points from +36 last June.
Pimentel’s net satisfaction rating rose to a personal hight with a good +46 in September, with 60 percent saying they were satisfied and 14 percent saying they were not.
Pimentel’s net satisfaction in the SWS survey was up by 13 points from +33 in June.
Alvares, on the other hand, suffered a one-grade drop in his net satisfaction rating from moderate to neutral, at a personal low of +8 in September, with 34 percent saying they were satisifed with the Speaker, and 26 percent saying they were not.
Alvarez’ net satisfaction fell 8 points from +16 in the previous survey period.
Sereno’s net satisfaction rating also fell one grade from moderate to neutral, at +9 in September, with 35 percent saying they were satisfied and 26 percent saying they were dissatisfied.
Sereno’s net satisfaction was down by 12 points from +21 last June.
The September 2017 Social Weather Survey had sampling error margins of ±2.5 percent for national percentages.
Pimentel said he believed the latest Pulse Asia survey showing most Filipinos trusting the President was accurate.
“I can also feel the support for the President spontaneously from the people I meet,” he said.
Pimentel said he was happy about his own ratings, and credited it to the cooperation, support and hard work of his fellow senators.
“And maybe, just maybe, the favorable coverage of the Senate media,” he said.
Senator Sherwin Gatchalian said the survey showed most Filipinos continue to trust the President, but said all studies should be analyzed carefully and be used to attune the policies and programs to the needs of the people. The basic problems of poverty and impunity still persist, he added.
Another ally of the President, Senator Juan Edgardo Angara, said ithe survey ratings of the President will go up or go down, but he was elected by the people for a term of six years.
He said a snapshot of public sentiment at a given time was bound to change from time to time.
In the House, Davao City Rep. Karlo Nograles welcomed the latest Pulse Asia results, “which showed undeniable proof that the public continues to hold President Rodrigo Duterte in high regard.”