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President Benigno Aquino III still enjoys high trust ratings, but his overall approval rating has gone down since last year, the most recent survey by pollster Pulse Asia revealed Tuesday.
In the survey, conducted from January 19 to 30, the President’s latest overall approval rating decreased by 12 percentage points, from 78 percent in November 2012 to 66 percent in the January 2013 survey.
"Marked changes occurred in the National Capital Region (NCR), Balance Luzon, and the Visayas (from 74 percent to 59 percent, 77 percent to 61 percent and 79 percent to 67 percent, respectively). Declines in President Aquino’s approval rating between the two survey periods are also noted in Class D (from 78 percent to 64 percent) and Class E (from 79 percent to 70 percent)," Pulse Asia said.
Out of the 1,800 survey respondents, 28 percent said they were ambivalent or uncertain about the President’s work. Only 6 percent said they disapproved of Aquino's work.
On the other hand, the survey showed that Aquino obtained sizeable majority trust ratings of 68 percent. "Only the top two national government officials obtained majority trust ratings in January 2013," Pulse Asia said. Along with Aquino, Vice President Jejomar Binay obtained a 71 percent trust rating.
The President's trust rating decreased from 80 percent in November 2012, when only 4 percent of Filipinos distrusted him, and 16 percent were undecided. In the latest survey, distrust in the President was at 6 percent. Meanwhile, about a fourth of Filipinos expressed indecision as regards the trustworthiness of the President (26 percent).
Pulse Asia noted that the trust ratings of the country’s top five officials declined between November 2012 and January 2013. "While distrust in the President and the Vice-President was at single-digit levels (6 percent and 5 percent, respectively), distrust was more pronounced toward Senate President Juan Ponce Enrile (15 percent), House Speaker Feliciano Belmonte (21 percent), and Supreme Court Chief Justice Maria Lourdes Sereno (20 percent)," the survey said.
The Senate President obtained a 46 percent trust rating, while nearly four out of ten Filipinos (38 percent) were undecided. Indecision was the near majority opinion on the matter of trusting of distrusting House Speaker Belmonte (48 percent) and Supreme Court Chief Justice Sereno (50 percent), the survey also said.
While Filipinos were undecided on the matter of trusting Chief Justice Sereno, the Supreme Court was the only key government institution in the survey to obtain a majority trust rating.
"Of the three government institutions trust-rated in this survey, only the Supreme Court obtains a majority trust rating (53 percent). The Senate records a near majority trust rating (48 percent) while the House of Representatives is trusted by 44 percent of Filipinos," the survey said.
The survey results were released Tuesday, coinciding with the start of the campaign period for the coming May 13 elections. In his New Year's message, Aquino said 2013 is critical to his administration's crusade of ensuring long-term progress and good governance, and urged Filipinos to be discerning in choosing their leaders and lawmakers in the coming elections. — RSJ, GMA News