Duterte’s popularity soars with Philippine crime war: Poll
MANILA – Agence France-Presse
AP PhotoPhilippine President Rodrigo Duterte’s popularity has soared during his first three months in office, an independent survey showed Oct. 6, in an apparent endorsement by Filipinos of his brutal crime war.
Defense ally the United States, the United Nations and the European Union have led global condemnation of Duterte’s unprecedented crime crackdown, which has left more than 3,000 people dead and raised fears of mass extrajudicial killings.
However 76 percent of Filipinos polled by Social Weather Stations said they were “satisfied” with Duterte’s performance, with just 11 percent reporting being “dissatisfied” and the rest undecided.
“The president seems to be off on a very good start,” his spokesman, Ernesto Abella, told reporters as he assessed the survey.
“The people trust what he is doing.”
The Manila-based polling group surveyed 1,200 adults nationwide from Sept. 24-27, asking them simply about Duterte’s performance as president without reference to the drug war.
It signaled a huge jump in support from the May elections, which he won in what was considered a landslide but still with just 37.6 percent of the votes.
In the Philippines, the presidential election is decided simply by whoever gets the most votes, and his nearest rival secured 22.6 percent.
According to BusinessWorld, which published the Social Weather Stations survey, only one other president has enjoyed higher popularity ratings three months into their presidency since democracy was restored in 1986 following the fall of dictator Ferdinand Marcos.
That president was Fidel Ramos, who ruled from 1992-1998 and is now one of Duterte’s chief allies.
Under the constitution that was re-written post-Marcos, presidents are only allowed to serve a single term of six years.
Duterte, a provincial politician, stormed to victory largely on his pledge to eradicate crime in six months.