Filipinos’ optimism hits record high under Duterte admin

Nov. 25, 2016

DAVAO CITY, Philippines — More than half of Filipinos said they expected their quality of life and better economy under the administration of President Rodrigo Duterte, according to a survey by the Social Weather Stations.

The September 24-27 survey showed that many of the Filipinos were “optimists,” yielding a net optimism score of +43 as more respondents felt their lives to improve in the year ahead.

The SWS survey came as Duterte was criticized for his hard stand on burial issue of former President Ferdinand Marcos. The tough-talking president had since then argued that Marcos should be buried at the Heroes’ Cemetery because he was both a soldier and a president.

Duterte’s unflinching stand drew the ire of Martial Law victims, human rights advocates and other groups who viewed the Marcosian rule as one of the dark stories of the country.

Earlier this week, Duterte has reiterated his argument on the issue when he came back Wednesday from the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation Leaders’ Meeting in Peru and New Zealand.

“I will, gladly, and happy even to step down and relinquish my post if you can answer in the negative these two key questions: was the late Pres. Marcos a president? And was he a soldier?” he told anti-Marcos groups.

The Mindanawon president emphasized that his view was based on the tenets of the law, admitting that it is difficult to prove that whether or not Marcos was a hero.

“I have to follow the law. That is my sworn duty. To protect and adhere to the constitution,” he said, pointing out that his decisions are “guided by the common good and the general welfare of the people.”

“All actions of the government will be always driven by the desire and to resolve to advance national interest,” he added.

But despite the criticisms against Duterte, Filipinos remain hopeful for the months to come as the SWS survey noted that in economy, the net optimism scored +44 which means Filipinos foresee the better improvement in the economy in general.

“This is a record-high from the previous +11 in March 1987,” Presidential Communications Secretary Martin Andanar said.

Andanar added that the numbers are “encouraging and are consistent with the findings, also from SWS, that declining number of families rating themselves as poor.”

“They affirm that the Duterte Administration is on the right track in its fight against drugs and crime while pursuing a 10-point socioeconomic program,” he added.(

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