SWS: Duterte keeps high satisfaction rating in Q1 of 2019

Robie de Guzman   •   April 11, 2019   •   1970

President Rodrigo Duterte | Courtesy : PCOO

MANILA, Philippines – President Rodrigo Duterte’s net satisfaction rating rose by six percentage points in the first quarter of the year, based on the latest survey of the Social Weather Stations (SWS) released on Wednesday.

The poll, conducted from March 28 to 31 among 1,440 respondents, showed that Duterte’s net satisfaction rating remained in the ‘very good’ category after it went up from +60 in December to +66 in the first months of 2019.

The survey found that 79 percent of adult Filipinos were satisfied with the President’s performance, 13 percent were dissatisfied while 8 percent were undecided.

The first quarter rating of +66 ties with a personal high that Duterte set in June 2017.

SWS attributed the increase in Duterte’s net satisfaction rating to rise in his rating across Metro Manila, Balance Luzon and Visayas where he kept his “very good” rating.

He also maintained his “excellent rating” in Mindanao and enjoyed an increase in his satisfaction rating in all age groups and socio-economic classes.

Malacañang welcomed the latest survey of SWS, saying this only shows that the public is satisfied with Duterte’s performance despite critics’ efforts to malign his administration.

“The message of the survey is crystal clear. The more the critics and detractors malign PRRD [President Rodrigo Roa Duterte], the higher the rating he gets,” Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo said in a statement.

“These political adversaries are being swallowed by their own hubris. Survey after survey they are being repudiated. They appear to be ensconced if not entangled in their own web of lies that they cannot unshackle themselves from it,” Panelo added.

But rather than continue the hate campaign against Duterte, Panelo urged the critics to “join the majority supporting Administration’s programs designed to serve and protect the nation and its citizenry and start contributing for the country’s progress.”

The Palace official also believes that the latest survey shows that Filipinos “see his sincerity in realizing his sacred vow to the electorate and witness the tangible results of his people-centered decisions and decisive actions that foster genuine and positive change.”

Panelo stressed that Duterte is working double time to fulfill his campaign promises to curb illegal drugs, corruption, criminality and insurgency in the country and to ensure that Filipinos will have comfortable lives during his term.  

“No negative force will detract him from his goal of liberating the people from the causes that enslave them and stunt the growth of the country,” he added. – Robie de Guzman (with details from Rosalie Coz)

Panelo: One-on-one interview with Duterte to push through on Tuesday

Aileen Cerrudo   •   January 28, 2020

After its postponement on January 22, the one-on-one interview with President Rodrigo Duterte will push through on Tuesday (January 28), said Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo on Monday.

The January 22 schedule for the one-on-one interview was postponed due to “pressing family matters”.

“Due to pressing matters, the tête-à-tête Part 2 of President Rodrigo Roa Duterte and Chief Presidential Legal Counsel and Presidential Spokesperson Salvador S. Panelo has been moved to January 28, 2020 at the Rizal Hall, Malacañan Palace at 5:00 p.m.,” a previous media advisory read.

This will be the President’s second têtê-a-têtê. The first televised interview was held last September 2018.—AAC (with reports from Rosalie Coz)

PH now working on terminating PH-US VFA, says Palace

Robie de Guzman   •   January 24, 2020

Philippine Marines rush to shore during an amphibious landing exercise with United States counterparts on a beach on the coast of the Naval Education and Training Command in Zambales Province, northwest of Manila, Philippines, 09 May 2018. The Philippines-US Balikatan (Shoulder to Shoulder) Military Exercise is on its 34th iteration, which is aimed to enhance interoperability between security forces of the two countries. EPA-EFE/ROLEX DELA PENA

MANILA, Philippines – Malacañang confirmed Friday that the Philippines has started the process of terminating the Visiting Forces Agreement with the United States, a day after President Rodrigo Duterte threatened to end the deal if it does not reverse the cancellation of Senator Ronald “Bato” dela Rosa’s visa.

Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo said the president issued the termination order Thursday night despite giving a month for the US to restore the senator’s visa.

Panelo said the order has already been relayed to Foreign Affairs Secretary Teodoro Locsin Jr. as well as Philippine Ambassador to the US Jose Manuel Romualdez.

“I just talked with Secretary Teddy Boy Locsin, and he said that he will start with the process and he called up already the vice chair and they talked, and Ambassador Romualdez has already been informed, I was also talking to him earlier,” he said.

In a tweet on Friday, Locsin confirmed he and Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana have taken the first step in ending the 1998 deal with the US government.

Locsin sits as the chairperson of the Commission on Visiting Forces while Lorenzana serves as vice chairman.

“Del Lorenzana and I- as Vice and Chair of USVFA – are starting the process of terminating it by first contacting the Senate because it is a treaty on our side, an executive agreement on the US side. I’m leaving for Washington on a totally unrelated matter,” he wrote on his Twitter account.

Lorenzana, for his part, refrained from commenting into Duterte’s latest pronouncement.

“Will study it first,” he said in a message to reporters. “No comment muna. Too soon to comment.”

The VFA is a bilateral accord between Washington and Manila that came into force in 1999. It outlines the guidelines about the treatment of their troops when visiting the US or the Philippines. It includes provisions on visa and passport policies for US troops and the American government’s right to retain jurisdiction over its personnel, among others.

The deal may be terminated by either of the two countries by writing to the other party signifying their intent to end the agreement. Its expiration will come 180 days from the date of notification. – RRD (with details from Correspondents Rosalie Coz & Lea Ylagan)

Duterte turns down Trump invite to attend US-ASEAN meet

Robie de Guzman   •   January 24, 2020

MANILA, Philippines – President Rodrigo Duterte said he has decided to reject the invitation of United States President Donald Trump to attend the US-Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) summit to be held in Las Vegas this March.

Duterte announced his decision during an interview with Russian International Television Network RT.

“I just received an invitation to go to the United States together with the ASEAN leaders. I haven’t been to the States. I was invited by [former US President Barack] Obama a while back. But I did not go,” he said in a video posted on Thursday.

When asked if he will attend the upcoming summit between the US and ASEAN, Duterte replied with: “No, no.”

During the interview, the president recalled the time when Obama criticized him and his campaign against illegal drugs.

“One time when I was being criticized by Obama in a press conference, he should have realized that I’m also the head of a sovereign state. He should have criticized me in the proper venue,” he said, referring to a September 2016 press conference where Obama urged Duterte to conduct his campaign “the right way.”

The president said Obama’s move to castigate him in a press briefing got him “so mad” and prompted him to curse the former president.

Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo earlier said that the chief executive is “still pondering” on whether he would accept Trump’s invitation as he is mindful of the possibility of getting barred from entering the US since he doesn’t have a visa, and making some American senators “unhappy” seeing him there. – RRD (with details from Correspondent Rosalie Coz)

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