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Estrada still can't fathom rating drop

() - January 7, 2000 - 12:00am

He is befuddled.

President Estrada said yesterday he cannot understand why his popularity is waning but insisted that he would continue the policies blamed for his falling ratings.

"The truth is I cannot understand this approval rating," he said. "I want to explain to you that we cannot do all reforms immediately."

Mr. Estrada was reacting to the results of a nationwide survey which showed his performance rating falling to 44 percent in December from 56 percent in October.

It is a massive drop from his 78 percent approval rating in June 1999, a year after the former movie star was elected president.

Mr. Estrada, however, brushed aside the ratings, saying "it is more important to me to find a solution to the problems of the country."

Critics have blamed Estrada's plunge in popularity to his controversial campaign to amend the Constitution.

The President said he wants to remove protectionist provisions, but opponents charge that constitutional revisions would give him a chance to entrench himself in power.

Asked if he would sacrifice the Charter-change move to pull up his ratings, he said: "I will continue to campaign to amend the basic law, even if my popularity keeps going lower. It is for the greatest good of the greatest number."

The President vowed to step up the government's campaign to amend the Constitution, saying that the people would accept it once they realize that the change would benefit them in the form of jobs and higher income.

"There is no stopping in our campaign to amend our Constitution even if my popularity goes down," he said over Radyo Bombo yesterday. "In truth, I don't give attention to approval ratings. All I want to tell our people is we cannot do at one blast all the reforms we plan to institute."

Mr. Estrada assured the people that he remains in control of the government despite a Social Weather Stations (SWS) survey showing an all-time low in the government's performance rating.

"I don't mind the ratings but my attention is more more focused on the welfare of our people," he said. "It is important for me to find solutions to the problems of our country."

The President appeared concerned about the results of a December 1999 SWS survey which showed the national government's net satisfaction rating drop to negative eight percent.

The Constitution's amendment is just one of the key components of the administration's Angat Pinoy 2004 economic program, he added. -

ALL I ANGAT PINOY ESTRADA MR. ESTRADA PRESIDENT PRESIDENT ESTRADA RADYO BOMBO RATING RATINGS SOCIAL WEATHER STATIONS
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