Gov't pandemic approval rating down by 30% in September — OCTA poll

Christian Deiparine - Philstar.com
Gov't pandemic approval rating down by 30% in September � OCTA poll
Traffic officers inspect public utility vehicles along Commonwealth Avenue in Quezon City on November 4, 2021 with the pandemic task force increasing the seating capacity in public transport to 70%
The STAR / Michael Varcas

MANILA, Philippines — Filipinos' approval rating of the government's pandemic handling took a dip by 30% in September, an OCTA Research survey has suggested. 

The results made public on Thursday showed 50% of 1,200 adult respondents saying they were still approved of the Duterte administration's response to the health crisis. 

But that was down significantly from the 80% in July this year. Of that, 17% said they "truly approve" and 33% said they remain "somewhat approve" of the efforts. 

OCTA held the nationwide poll from September 11 to 16 through random sampling with a margin of error of ±3%. At the time, the country was still experiencing a surge in coronavirus cases that the experts attributed to the Delta variant of COVID-19. 

Health authorities reported the Philippines' highest daily rise in cases since the pandemic hit on September 11, with 26,303 new infections. 

The independent panel of experts' findings showed, too, that 23% disapprove of the government's handling — 17% "somewhat disapprove" and 6% "truly disapprove" of it. 

Some 27%, meanwhile, could not say whether they were in approval or not of the pandemic response. 

"It was really the great Delta surge that started in the latter part of July that is the major cause for the drop," said OCTA fellow Ranjit Rye when asked.

That uptick in cases was first seen in the said month. By end of July, the National Capital Region and other areas were forced to return to hard lockdowns.

But months later, it appears the surge has waned. Authorities said the continuing decrease in cases is no longer artificial, and the government has relaxed more restrictions.

But as the holiday season approaches, officials have sought to warn the public against complacency and added cases could still possibly go up again. 

Metro Manila saw the biggest decrease in approval rating on the government's pandemic response at 49%. In July, approval was at 87% down to 38% by September. 

Only 7% were "truly approve" of that, while 31% said they still "somewhat approve" of.

In Balance Luzon, the decline stood at 37%, or from 83% in July but placing at 46% in September. 

Approval rate in Visayas was from 65% to 35%, while the figure in Mindanao was from 84% to 78%.

Rye said they expect the numbers to go up with the picture in Metro Manila and the rest of the country continuing to improve. 

The Philippines has so far tallied 2.80 million coronavirus cases, with deaths now reaching 44,665.

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