FOLLOWING his controversial joke on the 1989 rape and killing of an Australian missionary, presidential aspirant Davao City Mayor Rodrigo Duterte lost a majority of supporters when he suffered a nine-point drop in the National Capital Region (NCR) in the latest Pulse Asia survey commissioned by ABS-CBN, an official of a research firm said.
Dr. Ana Maria Tabunda, Research Director of Pulse Asia Research, said that Duterte lost nine percent in the NCR, from 43 percent to 34 percent.
The decline in NCR was significant and showed his rape jokes had an effect on voters. The voters in NCR react fast to issues,” said Tabunda.
In the past, it usually takes two weeks before an issue will catch the attention of the public, Tabunda said. But with the advent of social media, these issues reach the people easily.
The NCR or Metro Manila is a significant area because it has the second highest number of voters with 6,253,249. Calabarzon tops with more than 7 million registered voters. There are 54,363,844 voters nationwide for the May 9 national elections, according to the Commission on Elections.
Tabunda also said that Duterte lost three points in his bailiwick in Mindanao, from 61 percent to 58 percent.
Duterte also dropped 10 percent in Class A,B,C (47 to 37) and three percent in Class E (34 to 31).
The Pulse Asia survey fieldwork was conducted from April 19-24.
Aside from the rape joke covered during the survey, other news developments that time include the disclosure of Sara Duterte, daughter of the mayor, that she was a rape victim and Duterte’s challenge to cut ties with Australia and the US for their comments about his joke.
Despite Duterte’s lead in the latest survey, Tabunda believes that the double-digit figure of Duterte in the survey is still not smooth due to the new allegations of hidden wealth hurled against him by Senator Antonio Trillanes IV.
The number of undecided voters in Metro Manila has increased from three percent to six percent.
The Pulse survey interviewed 4,000 respondents with sampling margin error of plus or minus 1.5 percent for the nationwide results.