By FRED M. LOBO
President Duterte’s popularity has climbed anew, hitting a new high during the last quarter, according to the Social Weather Stations (SWS).
SWS said that Duterte got an “excellent“ net satisfaction rating of +72 in the last three months of 2019, as shown by the results of its latest survey (Dec. 13-16).
A 7-point increase from his prior quarter’s record of +68 set last June.
However, SWS added that in the same survey, 72% of Filipinos said they are “worried” about the health of the President who had earlier complained of migraine and spine and digestive tract issues.
Health is wealth, especially for the President and Malacanang tenant.
President Duterte lamented that the Philippine economy is “really dragging” because of the illegal drug trade, corruption, and communist insurgency in the country.
Drug lords and communist rebels must be neutralized so we can progress, the Punisher said.
“I cannot improve this — the standing of our economy if marami akong kalaban, itong mga droga, at NPA… it’s the same situation one administration after another,” Duterte said during a recent Taal situation briefing in Batangas City.
“If youcannot kill all of these NPAs and kill all of these drug lords, mahirapan tayo…We are like a plane na nasa runway lang. Hindi tayo nag-te-take-off kailanman,” he added.
“They say that the economy is better. I don’t claim any credit for that but for me it’s still the same…as long as the Filipinos really are jobless..”
“We cannot improve the country because the countryside is full of idiots who think that they can take over government,” Duterte lamented.
The President also expressed concern about corruption and red tape in government, saying, “We’re getting nowhere.”
I will streamline and automate government processes through an executive order to hasten the delivery of public service, he vowed.
The government said that after two-quarters of slowdown, the local economy surged to 6.2 percent in the third quarter of 2019 and was estimated to grow by 6.6 percent in the fourth quarter .
Economic growth is most welcome, badly needed by PH.
The Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) said it will join hands with other government agencies and stakeholders in reducing poverty incidence to 14 percent in 2022.
Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program (4Ps), Social Pension for Indigent Senior Citizens, and the Unconditional Cash Transfer (UCT) Programwill be implemented better, the agency said.
The Duterte administration vowed that after reducing poverty incidence from 23.3 percent in 2015 to 16.6 percent in 2018, it will try its best to bring it down further to 14 percent in 2022.
The Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) reported that the Philippines had a higher-than-projected balance of payments (BOP) surplus for 2019 of $7.84 billion as against a $4.8 billion projection.
The 2019 BOP surplus reverses 2018’s $2.31 billion deficit, it said.
The BSP pointed out “the surplus was supported by higher net receipts of trade in services, personal remittance inflows from overseas Filipinos, and sustained net inflows of Foreign Direct Investments and portfolio investments,” and is expected to hit $3 billion this year.