Eduardo de los Angeles

Villar loses 6 points; Estrada gains 6 points

Villar loses 6 points; Estrada gains 6 points
Philippine Daily Inquirer

MANILA, Philippines—Not even Sen. Manuel Villar’s speech at the Senate claiming innocence with regard to the C-5 road extension controversy could avert the drop of 6 percentage points in his ratings in the latest Pulse Asia survey.

The results of the February 2010 Pre-election Survey for National Elective Positions conducted on Feb. 21-25 showed that support for Villar, the standard-bearer of the Nacionalista Party, had declined by 6 percentage points (or from 35 percent to 29 percent), and that his closest rival, Sen. Benigno “Noynoy” Aquino III of the Liberal Party, would have won the presidency if the elections were held last month.

With the noncommissioned survey’s margin of error of plus or minus 2 percentage points, support for Aquino was statistically unchanged from 37 percent in January (when he and Villar were on a statistical tie) to 36 percent in February.

The big mover in the survey was Joseph “Erap” Estrada of the Pwersa ng Masang Pilipino, who was ousted from the presidency in 2001, convicted of plunder in 2007 and pardoned weeks later.
His support rose to 18 percent last month, up 6 percentage points from January, placing him third in the presidential race.

“This means that Erap has reclaimed the support of the majority of our poor voters, those in the D and E economic classes,” Reuters quoted Estrada’s spokesperson Margaux Salcedo as saying.

Aquino leading in ABC

Pulse Asia noted in its report to the media Friday that Villar’s privilege speech in the Senate clearing himself of wrongdoing in the C-5 road extension project, and the senators’ failure to vote on the committee report seeking to censure him, were among the events that dominated the news headlines in February.

The survey results showed Aquino enjoying a significant lead in Metro Manila (40 percent) and among social classes ABC (43 percent) and D (36 percent).

He shared the top spot with Villar in Luzon outside Metro Manila (33 percent for him, 31 percent for Villar); Visayas (39 percent for him, 38 percent for Villar); and among the poorest class E (36 percent for him, 33 percent for Villar).

The rating of Gilbert Teodoro, the administration’s standard-bearer, rose by 2 percentage points (from 5 to 7 percent). But it is statistically insignificant in light of the survey’s margin of error.

The ratings of the remaining candidates were statistically unchanged.

Bro. Eddie Villanueva of Bangon Pilipinas (2 percent) and Sen. Richard Gordon of Bagumbayan (1 percent) garnered ratings similar to those in Pulse Asia’s January survey.

Those who received ratings of less than zero were Sen. Jamby Madrigal (0.3 percent), Nicanor Perlas (0.2 percent) and JC de los Reyes (0 percent).

Still included in the survey was Vetellano Acosta of the Kilusang Bagong Lipunan (0.04 percent), who has just been declared a nuisance candidate by the Commission on Elections.

VP race

Aquino’s running mate, Sen. Manuel “Mar” Roxas II, maintained a significant lead over other vice presidential candidates with 43 percent.

Roxas was followed by Villar’s running mate, Sen. Loren Legarda (27 percent), and Estrada’s running mate, Makati Mayor Jejomar Binay (15 percent).

The other candidates posted 1-digit ratings: Bayani Fernando (4 percent), Eduardo Manzano (2 percent), Perfecto Yasay (1 percent), Jose “Jay” Sonza (1 percent) and Dominador Chipeco Jr. (0.1 percent).

The survey used face-to-face interviews with 1,800 Filipino adults. For the electoral preference module, Pulse Asia used a sample ballot measuring 8.5 x 26 inches, the size of the official ballot of the Commission on Elections.

The respondents who chose a presidential candidate were asked why they did so.

Among the reasons they cited were: Not corrupt/clean record (26 percent); cares for the poor (22 percent); can do something, is doing something, will do something (14 percent); helps, helping others (11 percent); good person (10 percent); used to governing, has experience (7 percent); knowledgeable/ intelligent (5 percent); listens to people (3 percent); and other reasons (1 percent).

Still undecided

Six percent of Filipino voters have yet to decide on their presidential preference or have no candidate in mind, according to the survey.

Seven percent of voters have no vice-presidential preference. Lawrence de Guzman of Inquirer Research, with a report from Reuters

'Detained Legacy scam brains holding political caucuses in condo'

‘Detained Legacy scam brains holding political caucuses in condo’
By Delon Porcalla
The Philippine Star

MANILA, Philippines – The brains behind the multi-billion-peso Legacy group financial scam is “holding political caucuses in a condominium suite,” courtesy of Justice Secretary Agnes Devanadera, a senior lawmaker disclosed yesterday.

Albay Rep. Edcel Lagman warned the Department of Justice (DOJ) chief against leaving her office hastily, in light of the Supreme Court ruling on appointed officials seeking elective office, because she still has “unfinished business” regarding the case of Eduardo de los Angeles.

“While contemporary American pyramiding culprit Bernard Madoff is now serving a prison term, De los Angeles is holding political caucuses in the comfort of a condominium suite,” the Bicolano congressman revealed.

“De los Angeles is still calling the shots and is very much involved in politics. He’s calling all his leaders, political wards there in the suite,” Lagman told The STAR.

Lagman cited the case of a local bet in Sto. Domingo who announced over the radio that De los Angeles had endorsed him.

Devanadera is running for congresswoman in Quezon province.

Lagman, a provincemate of De los Angeles, who once served as mayor of Sto. Domingo in Albay, noted that Devanadera has yet to answer his Feb. 11 letter on why the prime suspect, who duped thousands in the pre-need industry, is not confined in a prison cell.

“Devanadera’s persistent refusal to formally answer the query smacks of apparent complicity in the improvident discharge of De los Angeles from the St. Luke’s Medical Center and his transfer to the nearby Cathedral Heights Complex,” he said.

The administration lawmaker learned from reliable sources that De los Angeles is at Room 1703 of the Cathedral Heights Complex.

Before leaving her post, Lagman said Devandera must answer why the DOJ prosecutors failed to successfully oppose the transfer of De los Angeles from his hospital bed to a condominium suite, and bring him instead to a detention cell.

“Why does it take so long for DOJ prosecutors to finish the preliminary investigation of the many criminal complaints against De los Angeles, including a string of non-bailable syndicated estafa cases? And why are pending warrants of arrest against de los Angeles not served up to now?” Lagman asked.

He lamented that “after billions of pesos have been marauded from Legacy banks and pre-need establishments, and countless investors victimized, De los Angeles continues to elude and mock justice under the very noses of the DOJ officials.”

“This is a scam after a scam,” Lagman said.