Mindanao shows growing dissatisfaction with gov’t – SWS

Carmela Fonbuena
Mindanao pulls down the national ratings of the Senate, the House of Representatives, the Supreme Court, and even President Duterte's Cabinet

MANILA, Philippines – Mindanao continued to show massive support for President Rodrigo Duterte but the region didn’t have the same love for the rest of the government, a recent survey by the Social Weather Stations (SWS) showed.

In an SWS survey conducted in March, the President continued to enjoy an “excellent” 82% satisfaction rating in Mindanao, allowing him to maintain his “very good” 56% net rating nationwide.

But the Senate, the House of Representatives, the Supreme Court (SC), and even Duterte’s Cabinet all registered double-digit declines in the region. Mindanao pulled down the national numbers of these government institutions. 

In Mindanao, the Senate dropped 26 points. The House dropped 12 points, the SC dropped 21 points, and the Cabinet dropped 29 points. 

These institutions also recorded significant drops in other parts of the country but not in the scale we saw in Mindanao. 

Martial law?

The survey didn’t explain the decline in the numbers but Mindanao has been under martial law for nearly a year. The extension of martial law until the end of 2018 was announced in December 2017 in the middle of the SWS survey period that month. It was later upheld by the Supreme Court.

The March survey was conducted as the region also anticipated Congress deliberations on a proposed law that will create the Bangsamoro region to replace the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao. 

The SC is dealing with a crisis, too, as Chief Justice Maria Lourdes Sereno faces back-to-back probes in the High Court itself and in Congress.

The Cabinet, meanwhile, has been losing key officials as Duterte continues a purge in government. The resignation of former Justice Secretary Vitaliano Aguirre happened after the March survey, however.

The SWS poll was conducted among 1,200 adult respondents from March 23 to 28. The net satisfaction rating is the difference between the percentage of satisfied and dissatisfied respondents while ignoring the undecided.

Malacañang: Cabinet will work double-time

Malacañang earlier welcomed the President’s survey ratings.

On Sunday, April 22, Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque said the Cabinet will work “double time” to serve the public.

“Many agencies have made significant strides in their respective areas and fields. The departments under the executive branch will continue to serve the nation and the best interest of our people by bringing comfortable life to disadvantaged and marginalized families, unmindful of the distraction and political noise,” Roque said.

“We shall therefore work double time in highlighting policies and programs of the current administration that have the most impact to the lives of our countrymen,” he added.

Senate and House

The Senate enjoyed the highest net nationwide satisfaction rating among government insitutions at 45%. The House of Representatives recorded 35%; the Supreme Court, 20%; and the Cabinet, 28%.

The Senate’s net nationwide rating dropped by 11 points to 45% in the March survey. This is its lowest rating in two years. It shows the same trend for the leaders of the legislative chambers. (READ: Alvarez, Sereno see 13-point drop in satisfaction ratings – SWS

“The 11-point decline in the overall net satisfaction rating of the Senate was due to decreases of 26 points in Mindanao, 18 points in Metro Manila, 6 points in the Visayas, and 2 points in Balance Luzon,” according to the SWS survey report.

“Downgrades in the Senate’s net satisfaction rating from December 2017 to March 2018 occurred in almost all socio-demographics: it fell by one grade in both urban and rural areas, in all classes except class ABCs, among both men and women, in all age groups, and in all educational levels,” SWS said.

The House of Representatives dropped 8 points to 35%. It also recorded a decline of  12 points decline in Mindanao and 8 points in Balance Luzon. 

Supreme Court and Cabinet

The Supreme Court dropped 17 points to 20%. It’s the lowest rating of the High Court in 6 years, said SWS.

“The 17-point decline in the overall net satisfaction rating of the Supreme Court was due to double-digit decreases in all areas:  21 points in Mindanao, 17 points in the Visayas, 17 points in Balance Luzon, and 11 points in Metro Manila,” the SWS said.

“Downgrades in the Supreme Court’s net satisfaction rating from December 2017 to March 2018 occurred in rural areas, among classes Ds and Es, among both men and women, among 18-24 year olds, among 35-44 year olds, and among 55 year olds and above, and in all educational levels,” it added.

The Cabinet dropped 10 points to 28%. This is also its lowest in two years. 

“The 10-point decline in the overall net satisfaction rating of the Cabinet was due to decreases in all areas: 29 points in Mindanao, 7 points in Balance Luzon, 2 points in the Visayas, and 1 point in Metro Manila,” the survey firm said.

“Downgrades occurred in rural areas, among classes Ds and Es, among both men and women, among 35-44 year olds, among 55 year olds and above, and among elementary graduates,” the SWS said. –