Duterte’s net satisfaction rating drops after reaching peak last year – SWS

Published September 23, 2021, 5:51 PM

by Jhon Aldrin Casinas

President Rodrigo Duterte updates the nation on the government’s efforts in addressing the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) at the Matina Enclaves in Davao City on June 4, 2020. (JOEY DALUMPINES/PRESIDENTIAL PHOTO)

President Duterte’s net satisfaction rating decreased after scoring his highest rating yet last year amid the ongoing pandemic, the latest Social Weather Stations (SWS) survey showed.

The poll body revealed that the President’s satisfaction rating dropped by 17 points, from a peak of +79 in the November 2020 survey to +62 in the June 2021 poll.

Results of the June 2021 survey showed that 75 percent of the respondents said they are “very/somewhat satisfied” with the president’s performance, 13 percent indicated that they are “very/somewhat dissatisfied”, while 12 percent are undecided.

In the May 2021 survey, meanwhile, Duterte got a net satisfaction rate of +65 (percent satisfied minus percent dissatisfied).

This consisted of 75 percent who are “very/somewhat satisfied”, 10 percent who are “very/somewhat dissatisfied”, and 15 percent who are undecided on the matter.

The SWS terminology for net satisfaction ratings are translated as follows: +70 and above as “excellent,” +50 to +69 “very good,” +30 to +49 “good,” +10 to +29 “moderate,” +9 to –9 “neutral,” -10 to –29 “poor,” -30 to –49 “bad,” -50 to –69 “very bad,” and -70 and below “execrable.”

A slide from a presentation during the SWS webinar

Highest rating yet

Amid the ongoing pandemic, the President scored his highest net satisfaction rating yet at +79 in the November 2020 survey.

This composed of 84 percent who are “very/somewhat satisfied” with the president’s performance, 6 percent who are “very/somewhat dissatisfied”, and 9 percent who are undecided.

The results of the three surveys, which was conducted amidst the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, were released in a webinar hosted by the SWS on Thursday, Sept. 23.

Pandemic’s impacts

SWS fellow and political science professor Jorge Tigno said the poll body did not conduct face-to-face interviews between March and October last year due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

He explained that the reason behind Duterte’s high satisfaction score in the November 2020 survey may be because to the impression at that time that the spread of the virus has been contained.

“I would situate that in that context when people were sensing that, okay this is now starting to be over and we’re relieved this has happened and that we’re satisfied with what the government has done,” Tigno said.

Handling of pandemic

SWS fellow and economics associate professor Geoffrey Ducanes said most Filipinos do not think the Duterte administration mismanaged the pandemic, based on the survey results.

“Most people do not think the government mismanaged the pandemic. That’s what the survey result showed,” Ducanes said.

“They actually gave the government relatively high rating in terms of taking care of those who got COVID-19 and also relatively high rating in terms of vaccination,” he added.

Citing the results of the June 2021 survey, Ducanes said the perception of the government’s management of the pandemic was less significant to public’s satisfaction on Duterte.

Role of ‘ayuda’

What is more important to the people, he said, was the perception of the government helping the poor during pandemic “which might have something to do with the ayuda.”

SWS fellow-in-residence and board member Steven Rood said that 69 percent of families received “ayuda” or assistance based on their data in 2020.

In 2021, where areas within the so-called “NCR-plus” were placed under lockdown, he said that 79 percent of Metro Manila families got assistance, while 65 percent of the families in other areas received aid.

“So a lot of people got money directly from the government during that time period,” Rood said.

Release of survey results

Ducanes said the November 2020 survey was conducted on a phone-based survey, a shift from the usual face-to-face interviews

“Since there was a big change in the satisfaction rating before the pandemic and during the pandemic, and there was a change in thge methodology, there was a decision not to release it initially,” he explained.

“And then later on, the thinking was that, well maybe before we release this we should try to understand what’s driving this satisfaction rating,” he added.