MANILA, Philippines – The court of public opinion is not as decided as the impeachment court.
A Pulse Asia nationwide survey that was held days before the verdict on former Chief Justice Renato Corona shows that nearly 4 out of 10 Filipinos were unable to say whether he was innocent or guilty.
The survey was conducted from May 20 to 26, before the Senate voted 20-3 to convict Corona on May 29. Pulse Asia released the survey on Monday, June 4.
“A plurality of Filipinos (38%) is ambivalent on the matter of Corona’s innocence or guilt. On the other hand, 30% of Filipinos say [he] is probably guilty, 15% believe he is definitely guilty, 3% are of the view that he is probably innocent and 2% consider him to be definitely innocent.”
Pulse Asia said most Filipinos formed their opinion of Corona during the conduct of his impeachment trial, which started on January 16.
One in 10 Filipinos (12%), however, admitted not knowing enough to give an opinion on the issue.
‘Little knowledge of Corona case’
Pulse Asia said Filipinos’ opinions on Corona depended on their reported amount of knowledge of his case.
Nearly half or 48% said they have little knowledge about Corona’s impeachment trial. The finding was consistent across geographic areas (44% to 49%) and socioeconomic classes (46% to 48%).
Pulse Asia said the majority sentiment among Filipinos (64%) is that the senators will be fair in judging Corona.
This was the sentiment across geographic areas and socioeconomic classes.
Only 26% of respondents said they did not expect the senator-judges to be fair while one in 10 expressed ambivalence on the issue.
Guilty or innocent, a “small majority” or 60% of respondents expected their fellow Filipinos to respect and accept the decision of the impeachment court.
TV top source of news
Three out of 4 Filipinos (75%) said they monitored Corona’s trial, with television being the most often-cited source of news (71%).
In comparison, only 17% monitored the trial through radio, 6% through newspapers and just 1% through the Internet.
Pulse Asia said majorities across geographic areas and socio-economic groupings monitored the trial.
In Metro Manila, 92% monitored the trial while 69% did in the rest of Luzon. In Visayas, 74% of respondents were following the impeachment, slightly lower than the 77% in Mindanao.
In terms of socioeconomic class, 69% from class E said they tracked the developments in the trial, 77% from class D, and 76% from class ABC.
The survey had 1,200 respondents, with a margin or error of ± 3%. – Rappler.com
Click the links below for key Rappler stories related to the impeachment case against Chief Justice Renato Corona:
- [Short Documentary] Disrobing the Chief Justice: Who is Renato Coronado Corona before he joined the Supreme Court in 2002?
- Spotlight on the Senator-judges: Rappler’s compilation of the profiles of the senator-judges
- LIVE BLOGS: Rappler’s blow by blow account of the trial
- #CoronaTrial: How the senators voted [with VIDEO HIGHLIGHTS]
- Was Corona honest? Check out our interactive map and judge for yourself
- A Guide: The charges vs Corona
- Making financial sense of Corona’s wealth
Opinion pieces in Thought Leaders.