What the sur­vey says

Sun.Star Pampanga - - TOPSTORIES! - TY­RONE VELEZ

EV­ERY­ONE has a say about these sur­veys come elec­tion time. We call them ma­nip­u­lated, mind-con­di­tion­ing. But they are still sta­tis­tics and re­flect voter be­hav­ior and other matters about the sen­a­to­ri­ables that we must con­sider.

The re­cent sur­vey of Pulse Asia shows that fa­mil­iar names and in­cum­bents are still top­ping the sur­veys. The sur­prise is first time can­di­date Bong Go, the pres­i­dent’s for­mer spe­cial as­sis­tant, but this is due to a lot of fac­tors, from name re­call, pop­u­lar­ity, con­tro­versy of us­ing gov­ern­ment ma­chin­ery for his pro­jec­tion.

There is some­thing skewed though if you look at the Pulse Asia sur­vey and the sur­vey made by the So­cial Weather Sta­tion about what qual­i­ties do vot­ers want in choos­ing their can­di­dates.

While the SWS showed that one-fourth of the peo­ple value hon­esty and good char­ac­ter as their cri­te­ria, I won­der how come can­di­dates with con­tro­ver­sial cases, the likes of Imee Mar­cos, Bong Revilla, and Jing­goy Estrada are rank­ing high in the sur­veys.

In the SWS sur­vey though, it seems to show that vot­ers choose char­ac­ter over ca­pa­bil­ity. Only 9 per­cent would choose can­di­dates who can give so­lu­tions to the prob­lems of the coun­try. While 14% would like can­di­dates who can de­liver on their prom­ises.

This shows that our pol­i­tics is still per­son­al­ity and pop­u­lar­ity based. Now if we are pre­fer­ring can­di­dates who of­fer al­ter­na­tive /in­de­pen­dent pol­i­tics or prin­ci­pled pol­i­tics, this is sad. As these can­di­dates noted, they have to do more.

But what is there to do? We have to look at how Com­elec needs to do some­thing for the sake of mak­ing the peo­ple have in­formed de­ci­sions. In other Asian coun­tries, their ver­sion of Com­elec pro­vides equal funds and re­sources for can­di­dates to post their cam­paign ma­te­rial and videos. If this is be­ing done here, this could be help­ful

to know all can­di­dates, in­cum­bent, in­de­pen­dent can­di­dates or to op­po­si­tion can­di­dates that will have the same op­por­tu­nity to project their plat­form and agenda.

But since that is not hap­pen­ing, what else can we do if we are not sat­is­fied with these re­sults?

As statis­ti­cian Jose Ra­mon Al­bert pointed out in an in­ter­view with Rap­pler, we have to do more. Sur­veys are in­flu­enced by a lot of things. Choices are made by how strong can­di­dates and their sup­port­ers cam­paign for them.

An­other matter which could have helped the vot­ers be­sides sur­veys is still, voter ed­u­ca­tion. In­sti­tu­tions and me­dia could project can­di­dates’pro­files, wealth, track record and plat­form; or project is­sues that matter and set this as the chal­lenge to the can­di­dates.

With the elec­tion about six weeks away, let us look into what matters in mak­ing our choices.

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