MANILA, Philippines – While voters’ preference surveys had been dominated by reelectionists, it’s a newbie that’s leading the partial, unofficial results of the senatorial race on Monday, May 9.
It’s the first time for former Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA) director general Joel Villanueva to seek a Senate seat, but he currently ranks 1st, so far.
In an interview with Rappler, Pulse Asia research director Ana Tabunda explained why Villanueva could have secured number one.
She noted that Villanueva was already at 5th place in the last pre-election survey.
“It’s really been the messaging that has been getting him higher in the ranking compared to even the reelectionist senators,” Tabunda explained. “He also, I think, has a very good network supporting him, both his Church and… the former people helping him from the agencies.”
Villanueva is the chairman of the Kristiyanong Kabataan para sa Bayan movement of the Jesus is Lord Church, which was founded by his father, Eddie Villanueva.
Tabunda added: “We’ll have to see the hundred percent [results], especially in a senatorial race, it can be pretty close. So it depends on the pattern of the transmission [of precinct results].”
Before heading TESDA in 2010, Villanueva was a member of the House of Representatives from 2001 to 2010, representing the Citizens’ Battle Against Corruption (CIBAC) party list. – Rappler.com