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By Raynan F. Javil

Duterte off to a ‘very good’ start -- SWS

Posted on October 06, 2016

PRESIDENT Rodrigo R. Duterte ended his first three months in office with a net satisfaction rating -- the first for the current chief executive -- that bested those of most of his post-EDSA revolution predecessors, except for Fidel V. Ramos, according to a Social Weather Stations’ (SWS) survey.

President Rodrigo R. Duterte needs to hone communication skills to improve performance, one analyst said. -- AFP
Results of the survey -- conducted Sept. 24-27 via face-to-face interviews with 1,200 adults nationwide and with sampling error margins of ±3 percentage points for national percentages and ±6 points each for Metro Manila, “Balance of Luzon,” the Visayas and Mindanao -- found 76% satisfied, 11% dissatisfied and 13% undecided regarding Mr. Duterte’s performance in the first quarter of his presidency.

That yielded a net satisfaction rating of +64 (% satisfied minus % dissatisfied, rounded off), classified as “very good.”

SWS classifies net satisfaction ratings of at least +70 as “excellent”; those +50 to +69 as “very good”; +30 to +49, “good”; +10 to +29, “moderate”; +9 to -- 9, “neutral”; -- 10 to -- 29, “poor”; -- 30 to -- 49, “bad”; -- 50 to -- 69, “very bad”; and -- 70 and below, “execrable.”

Only Mr. Ramos got a marginally better score of a similarly “very good” +66 (70% satisfied, 4% dissatisfied) in an Aug.10-Sept. 8, 1992 survey.

The rest of Mr. Duterte’s post-EDSA revolution predecessors did not fare as well:

• Benigno S. C. Aquino III garnered a “very good” +60 (71% satisfied, 11% dissatisfied) in a Sept. 24-27, 2010 survey;

• Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo got a “moderate” +24 (42% satisfied, 18% dissatisfied) on March 5-18, 2001 after she was sworn to office following the 2001 “EDSA II” revolt and then a “moderate” +12 (48% satisfied, 36% dissatisfied) on Aug. 5-22, 2004 shortly after winning the presidency.

• Joseph E. Estrada had a “very good” +60 (69% satisfied, 9% dissatisfied) on Sept. 11-29, 1998;

• Corazon C. Aquino bagged a “very good” +53 (60% satisfied, 7% dissatisfied) in a May 2-June 6, 1986 survey.

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Mr. Duterte obtained an “excellent” +85 (88% satisfied, 4% dissatisfied, rounded off) net satisfaction rating in his bailiwick, Mindanao, and “very good” scores elsewhere: +62 in the Visayas (75% satisfied, 14% dissatisfied, rounded off), +58 in Metro Manila (74% satisfied, 16% dissatisfied) and +57 in “Balance Luzon” (70% satisfied, 13% dissatisfied).

Net satisfaction was “very good” both in urban (+63, consisting of 74% satisfied and 12% dissatisfied, rounded off) and rural (+67: 78% satisfied, 11% dissatisfied) areas.

It was also “very good” across socioeconomic classes as well: +65 (76% satisfied, 11% dissatisfied) each in classes D, or the masa, and E, and a lower +56 (69% satisfied, 16% dissatisfied) among those in ABC.

In terms of gender, Mr. Duterte got an “excellent” +71 (79% satisfied, 8% dissatisfied) among men and “very good” +58 (72% satisfied, 15% dissatisfied, rounded off) among women.

By educational attainment, he got the highest score among high school graduates: an “excellent” +71, consisting of 80% satisfied and 9% dissatisfied.

It was “very good” among the rest: +65 (76% satisfied, 11% dissatisfied) among college graduates, +57 (72% satisfied, 15% dissatisfied) among elementary graduates and +54 (68% satisfied, 14% dissatisfied) among non-elementary school graduates.

Mr. Duterte’s net satisfaction was “excellent” for two respondent age groups: +73 (80% satisfied, 7% dissatisfied) among those aged 25- to 34-years-old and +71 (80% satisfied, 9% dissatisfied) in the 35- to 44-year-old segment.

It was “very good” among the rest: +61 (74% satisfied, 14% dissatisfied, rounded off) among 45-54 year olds, +58 (70% satisfied, 12% dissatisfied) among those aged at least 55-year-old and +55 (72% satisfied, 17% dissatisfied) in the youngest 18- to 24-year-olds segment.

A separate, uncomparable trust rating survey SWS conducted on June 24-27 -- days before Mr. Duterte’s June 30 inauguration -- found 84% of those surveyed with “much trust,” 11% undecided and 5% with “little trust” in Mr. Duterte, yielding an “excellent” net trust rating of +79.

Sought for comment, Presidential Communications Operations Office Secretary Martin M. Andanar said in a mobile phone message yesterday that Malacañang welcomes the result of the public satisfaction survey as it “reflects the continuing public confidence in his campaign against drugs, criminality, terrorism and corruption.”

“This will inspire further the Chief Executive and his team to work double time and commit anew in delivering his promise of genuine, meaningful change.”

Sought separately for comment, University of Santo Tomas political science professor Edmund S. Tayao said that a survey like this “measures the performance of the administration” in issues that respondents “care about or [are] close to them.”

“The reason for such figure is more on the context of how the public looks at what government is doing with respect to its campaign against drugs and criminality; what the government is doing as far the peace process is concerned...” Mr. Tayao said in a telephone interview.

He also noted that out in the first three months in office, Mr. Duterte had signed an executive order ensuring freedom of information, “albeit incomplete because it covers only the executive branch...”

“You see a concrete action particularly on the part of the president: ito ‘yung tinitingnan ng tao (this is what the public is watching out for).”

Mr. Tayao said, though, that the president needs to improve “communication.”

“There’s a lot of room for improvement especially in engaging in diplomacy... if that can be improved, then perhaps we can very well say that we have a perfect recipe for the performance of a sitting President,” he said.