Editorial: Surprising survey result

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Thursday, December 26, 2013

JUST when his critics thought they finally had him after super typhoon Yolanda struck the Visayas last month, a Social Weather Station (SWS) survey conducted from December 11-16 showed that 69 percent of Filipinos are still satisfied with the performance of President Noynoy Aquino as opposed to only 21 percent who were dissatisfied.

That means the President got a net performance rating of 48 percent in the fourth quarter of this year, which in SWS-speak means “good.” And this even if the Aquino administration was widely flogged for its handling of the response to Yolanda, especially in Tacloban City.

What is surprising is that the President got a “very good” grade in the Visayas, which was the very area that was devastated by Yolanda and hit by a magnitude 7.2 earthquake. His rating of 50 percent was even higher than his 48 percent rating in the third quarter of this year.

Because his performance rating did not plunge so low in the fourth quarter, the President got a “very good” rating of 55 percent this year considering that he rated higher in the three previous quarters.

As expected, Malacañang was elated by the results of the survey but his critics were disappointed. Some of them are again questioning the validity of the result and the integrity of SWS. Which means that the publication of the result of surveys, if there are any, done by its rival Pulse Asia is highly anticipated.

Of course, not everybody sees the glass as half full; others see it as half empty.

The region where the President’s performance rating suffered a beating in the fourth quarter was in the country’s main urban center of Metro Manila, where it went down from 38 percent in September to only 22 percent in December. His saving grace was Mindanao and the Visayas.

Also, his rating in the fourth quarter this year was much lower when compared with his 54 percent in the first quarter of 2013. That means criticisms hurled at the President may have started to take its toll. Will the downward trend continue next year?

That depends on the kind of challenges that will crop up in 2014 and how he responds to these. The President can only hope the challenges won’t be as taxing as the one posed by Yolanda.

Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on December 27, 2013.


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