By Ellalyn de Vera Ruiz and Argyll Cyrus Geducos
Filipinos’ satisfaction with the government’s campaign against illegal drugs remained “very good,” based on the latest Social Weather Stations (SWS) survey results.
The nationwide survey, conducted last June 27 to 30 among 1,200 respondents, found 78 percent satisfied and 13 percent dissatisfied with the administration’s campaign against illegal drugs.
This translates to a net satisfaction rating (percent satisfied minus percent dissatisfied) of +65, classified by SWS as “very good.”
It is one point above the very good +64 (75 percent satisfied, 12 percent dissatisfied) in March 2018.
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.”
SWS noted that satisfaction with the administration’s campaign against illegal drugs was at an “excellent” +76 when it was first surveyed in September 2016.
It was highest in December 2017 at an “excellent” +77.
However, it has been at the very good +63 to +66 range since March 2017, reaching its lowest rating of +63 in September 2017.
The one-point increase in nationwide net satisfaction with the anti-illegal drug campaign in June 2018 was because of a decrease in support in the Visayas, offset by slight increases in support in Metro Manila, Balance Luzon, and Mindanao, SWS said.
Net satisfaction was lowest in the Visayas, falling by 12 points from very good +69 (79 percent satisfied, 9 percent dissatisfied) in March 2018 to +57 (74 percent satisfied, 16 percent dissatisfied) in June 2018.
It had previously ranged from +63 to +69 for five quarters since March 2017.
However, it was highest in Mindanao, increasing by three points from the excellent +81 (87 percent satisfied, 6 percent dissatisfied) in March to +84 (89 percent satisfied, 5 percent dissatisfied) in June.
Out of eight survey rounds since September 2016, it has been excellent in seven and very good in one.
It increased by two points in Metro Manila, from very good +65 (78 percent satisfied, 13 percent dissatisfied) in March, to +67 (79 percent satisfied, 12 percent dissatisfied) in June.
It was highest on December 2016 at an excellent +80, but has been in the +61 to +67 range since September 2017.
It also increased by five points in the rest of Luzon, from very good +53 (67 percent satisfied, 15 percent dissatisfied) in March, to +58 (74 percent satisfied, 16 percent dissatisfied) in June.
It was highest on December 2016 at an excellent +77. It has been at the +53 to +58 range since September 2017.
The survey also found that net satisfaction with the performance of President Rodrigo Duterte was higher among those satisfied with the campaign against illegal drugs, at a very good +59 (73 percent satisfied, 14 percent dissatisfied), compared to the moderate +19 (41 percent satisfied, 22 percent dissatisfied) among those undecided about the anti-illegal drug campaign, and the poor -18 (33 percent satisfied, 50 percent dissatisfied) among those dissatisfied with the campaign against illegal drugs.
Palace cites public support
Malacañang said the result of the latest SWS survey is a testament to the huge support of the public for the Duterte administration’s war against illegal drugs.
“This is a testament that the drug war continues to enjoy the broad support of our people, notwithstanding the efforts of the detractors and critics of the Administration to politicize the issue or discredit the campaign’s success,” said Presidential Spokesman Harry Roque.
According to Roque, the high approval rating may have stemmed from the Filipinos’ desire to have safer streets in which to walk around.
“Filipinos aspire for a crime-free society which can be realized by stopping the spread of criminality and fighting the scourge of drugs,” he said.
Roque, meanwhile reiterated that Duterte never ordered the arrest of street idlers, more commonly known as “tambay,” (people who stand by or loiter) after an SWS survey showed that three of five Filipinos said it is a human rights violation.
“On the arrest of tambays as a violation of human rights, the matter has already been clarified when the President had said that he did not order the arrest of tambay, for loitering, per se, is not a crime,” he said.
“Authorities then issued guidelines that they would not bring to the police station those without violations,” he added.
Of 1,200 adults surveyed, 60 percent said that police arresting idlers is a violation of their human rights, giving a net agreement of +34 which is classified as “strong.”
In June this year, Duterte ordered the police to strictly enforce the laws, especially on loiterers, whom he described as “potential trouble” for the public.
Some 177,000 people were arrested for disobeying local ordinances in Metro Manila from June 13 to August 26, police earlier said.