By JOYCE ANN L. ROCAMORA &
ANGIE M. ROSALES / THE DAILY TRIBUNE NEWS
A Social Weather Stations (SWS) survey held several days after a United Nations (UN) human rights event played a video message of Vice President Leni Robredo condemning President Duterteâ€™s war on drugs and alleging that the Philippine National Police (PNP) is engaged in the â€œpalit-uloâ€ scheme substituting relatives to fugitive drug traffickers, Robredoâ€™s net satisfaction grade plunged 11 percentage points to a â€œmoderateâ€ 26. Robredoâ€™s rating drop was the result of 53 percent of respondents satisfied in her performance against 27 percent dissatisfied based on SWSâ€™ netting scheme. The same pollster released the other day the results of a survey on Mr. Duterte showing a net grade of 63 out of a high satisfaction rating of 75 percent and 12 percent dissatisfied. Mr. Duterteâ€™s grade did not change from the previous survey done last December despite the continuous criticismshurled at him by his local and foreign critics, including the Robredo video. Robredoâ€™s satisfaction grade suffered the most among top officials aside from the President based on the SWS survey results released yesterday. The survey also noted a slight decline on the ratings of other top government officials however, Robredo was the one who took the biggest drop. A spokesman for Robredo claimed the survey results continued to show support for Robredo while her partymates at the Liberal Party (LP) blamed the ratings slide on the â€œblack propagandaâ€ against her. Mr. Duterte, however, was the subject of more virulent attacks from local and foreign detractors which the Palace branded as â€œvicious noiseâ€ that included the filing of an impeachment complaint against him last March 16; the Senate appearance of a self-confessed but perjured assassin, SPO3 Arturo Lascanas who pointed to Mr. Duterte being behind extrajudicial killings in Davao City when he was mayor and the creation of the Davao Death Squad (DDS); human rights reports highly critical of the Duterte administrationâ€™s campaign against illegal drug traffickers and the internationally aired Robredo video. LP senators still maintained that black propaganda took its toll on Robredoâ€™s standing and the 11-point drop in her net satisfaction rating was an anticipated effect. â€œThis was expected with all the black propaganda against her, but it only affected a smaller percentage of the respondents, as the majority are still supportive of the Vice-president,â€ Sen. Bam Aquino, who served as Robredoâ€™s campaign manager during last yearâ€™s vice presidential elections said in a text message to reporters. Meanwhile, Office of the Vice President (OVP) spokesman Georgina Hernandez said the decline only serves as â€œa steady reminder that there are more families and communities to reach out to.â€ â€œWe take every survey as a continuing challenge to do better and make a bigger difference in the lives of the marginalized,â€ she said in a statement. â€œWe are grateful for the continued trust of our fellow Filipinos in the recent SWS Satisfaction Ratings,â€ Hernandez added. â€œThe support of the majority is an encouragement to Vice President Leni Robredo, who is working with communities and partners to address poverty around the country,â€ she said. LP President Francis Pangilinan, said the ratings dip on Robredo was understandable and claimed that even President Duterte was earlier reported to have suffered a seven-point drop in his net satisfaction ratings. Pangilinan was referring to a survey of Pulse Asia released last April 5 which ran a different survey that showed Mr. Duterteâ€™s performance rating retreated five points nationally from 83 percent in December 2016 to 78 percent in March and his trust rating also dropping seven points, from 83 percent last December to 76 percent in March. LP rationalizes confidence loss on VP â€œThe 11-point drop means that a segment of the population may not be in agreement with a number of positions she has taken but that is expected as well,â€ he said. Yet, Aquino himself practically took cognizance of the significance of the percentage drop in satisfaction ratings of the Vice President, who along with a number of several other government officials suffered the same decline in popularity standing. Considering that the alleged demolition jobs perpetrated against Robredo has somehow affected public perception on her, Aquino urged the Vice Presidentâ€™s camp not to take the matter sitting down and strongly advised them to rebound. Her office needs to continue pushing her agenda of uplifting the lives of marginalized countrymen, Aquino stressed. â€œAnd find a way to ensure that the message of hope and solidarity is louder than the mudslinging done by her detractors,â€ he said. The survey was conducted in March 25 to 28 via faceto- face interviews with 1,200 adults nationwide with a sampling error margin of plus and negative three percent. The vice president is currently facing an impeachment rap over a video message she sent to a United Nations side session in Vienna, Austria last month wherein she criticized the controversial â€œpalit- uloâ€ scheme amid President Rodrigo Duterteâ€™s drug war. A group of lawyers and several allies of Duterte tagged this as a betrayal of public trust pressing it as ground for Robredoâ€™s impeachment. Last week, pro-Duterte groups staged a rally at the Quirino Grandstand calling for the ouster of of the vice president. Senate President Aquilino Pimentel III also saw a decline in his net satisfaction ratings from previous quarterâ€™s â€œgoodâ€ to â€œmoderateâ€. During 2016â€™s fourth quarter survey, Pimentel obtained a +30 rating to +29 for this yearâ€™s first quarter. Chief Justice Maria Lourdes Serenoâ€™s satisfaction rating dropped 2 points staying â€œmoderateâ€ at +14 from +16 last December. In contrast, House Speaker Pantaleon Alvarezâ€™s ratings showed a slight gain from his +10 â€œmoderateâ€ to +12 moderate. Jobless Bongbong dying to work â€” Imee Former Sen. Ferdinand â€˜Bongbongâ€™ Marcos Jr. will not turn down Mr. Duterteâ€™s offer to serve in the Cabinet, his elder sister, Ilocos Norte Gov. Imee Marcos said in a chance interview at the Davao International Airport on Monday. Imee said her brother is really eager to work for the Duterte administration if ever he is given a chance. This does not mean that Marcos Jr. will abandon his poll protest against Robredo who defeated the late strongmanâ€™s namesake in a relatively thin margin as last yearâ€™s election results yield. â€œBongbong is jobless. Heâ€™s dying to work. Heâ€™s bored to death because he is not used to doing nothing,â€ Imee said. â€œTo work is really his type. He has the full support for the President so if he can help, Iâ€™m sure heâ€™d be very willing to do so,â€ she added. Reports and speculations after the dismissal of Interior Secretary Ismael Sueno last week suggest that an opening for Marcos to join the Duterte Cabinet has presented itself as he was long rumored to be Mr. Duterteâ€™s pick for the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) post. The DILG is an influential office in political terms since it is the Executive branchâ€™s direct links to local executives such as provincial governors alongside city and municipal mayors. Mr. Duterte, however, in recent statements said Marcos would likely thumb down his invitation saying that he is still focused on his election protest against Robredo noting that the said case has gained some legal momentum. Bongbong is not backing out from his electoral protest despite its â€œslow progressâ€, Imee said. â€œBongbong is focusing on his protest. Itâ€™s really slow thatâ€™s why I think heâ€™s looking for a job, seriously. But of course, I donâ€™t think he wants to jeopardize his protest,â€ she said. Imee Marcos, who is often thanked by Mr. Duterte as one of the very few political backers he had in last yearâ€™s elections, said that she volunteered herself to join the Presidentâ€™s week-long state visits to three Middle Eastern nations. The Ilocos Norte governor noted that she is there to check out the conditions of her fellow Ilocano overseas workers in Saudi Arabia, Bahrain and Qatar. â€œI really requested to join because of our overseas migrant labor force in the Middle East,â€ Marcos said. â€œThere are many Ilocanos and women there. They are important to me thatâ€™s why I have to know what their situations are so that we can help improve their conditions,â€ she added. The Ilocano populationâ€™s political strength, popularly known as the â€œSolid Northâ€, which appears to be loyal to the late strongman Ferdinand Marcos and his family is one of the factors which President Duterte himself is grateful to the Ilocano clan.