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Public skeptical over Arroyo speech in Congress–poll

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By Joel Guinto
First Posted 13:18:00 07/24/2008

MANILA, Philippines — The public is looking at President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo’s State of the Nation Address (SONA) on Monday with “skepticism” and “outright disbelief,” as they had done in her past addresses, according to an independent survey.

A Pulse Asia poll of 1,200 adults nationwide from July 1 to 14 showed that 60 percent or six out of 10 the respondents said they were aware of past editions of Arroyo’s SONA.

Of the 60 percent who said they were aware, 40 percent were expecting Monday’s SONA to be untruthful, 46 percent were undecided about the speech while only 14 percent said they expected it to be truthful, Pulse Asia said in a statement.

“Past patterns of public skepticism as well as outright disbelief regarding the truthfulness of President Arroyo’s SONA carry over into present times,” it said.

“Past public skepticism regarding President Arroyo’s SONAs appears to have become stronger and now makes it difficult for her to maximize her forthcoming SONA’s political value,” it said.

Moreover, of the 60 percent who were aware of the SONA, 46 percent said the President has not been truthful in her past speeches, 41 percent were undecided, while 13 percent said the President was truthful, it said.

“Much skepticism is expressed as regards the truthfulness of President Macapagal-Arroyo’s previous SONAs,” it said.

Every last Monday of July, the Philippine President addresses a joint session of Congress, as mandated by the Constitution, to report her accomplishments to the nation and lay out her plans for the year ahead.

Of the 14 percent who expect the President to be truthful on Monday’s SONA, 23 percent were from urban Visayas, Arroyo’s bailiwick, while the least number was reported in urban Luzon, with seven percent, the survey firm said.

Pulse Asia noted that of 49 percent of those who were undecided on the truthfulness of the upcoming SONA were from the ABC income brackets, while 60 percent were from the 18-24 age bracket.

Most of those who expect the upcoming SONA to be untruthful, 50 percent, were from Mindanao, it said.

Pulse Asia said that while vacillation on the truthfulness of the President’s SONA decreased by double digits from 52 percent last year to 41 percent this year, it “did not do [her] much good” since the undecided took on negative views of her speech.

The study has a margin of error of +/-3 percent with a confidence level of 95 percent, it said.

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Written by joelguinto

ThuUTC2008-07-24T06:50:31+00:00UTC07bUTCThu, 24 Jul 2008 06:50:31 +0000 22, 2006 at 12:45 am07

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