RP  GOVT  CONTINUES  TO  LAG  BEHIND  POVERTY  REDUCTION  TARGET - UN

MANILA, OCTOBER 9, 2009 (STAR) The Philippine government continues to lag behind its target to reduce poverty by the end of 2015, the United Nations Population Fund (UNPF) said yesterday.

The UNPF also said that the series of natural disasters further threatens development efforts with only six years to go before the deadline for the achievement of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs).

The MDGs are eight-time-bound goals aimed at significantly reducing, if not completely eradicating, extreme poverty by 2015.

The UNPF said the Philippines lags behind its targets on eliminating poverty and hunger, achieving universal primary education, reducing maternal deaths and combating HIV (human immunodeficiency virus) and AIDS (acquired immune deficiency syndrome).

“More than one-third of the population are still living on less than $1 a day, over five million children are not in school, 93 newborn babies and 11 mothers are dying everyday, HIV and AIDS cases are growing, with the youth increasingly becoming more vulnerable, and environmental resources are depleting,” said UNPF Representative and UN Advocacy Group chair Suneeta Mukherjee in yesterday’s press conference for the 2009 Stand Up Against Poverty Campaign, which adopted the local theme “Stand United, Fight Poverty.”

For his part, UN Millennium Campaign (UNMC) Deputy Director Minar Pimple said the Philippine government needs “disaster-proofing” of its MDGs or integrating disaster risk reduction into sustainable development policies and planning so that it contributes to MDG achievement.

“Efforts to avoid or at least mitigate further losses are a must by all concerned if achievement of the goals by 2015 is to be a realistic proposition. Disaster proofing the MDGs is a need of the hour,” Pimple said.

Former national treasurer Leonor Briones, of Social Watch Philippines, said widespread measures need to be taken to minimize the impacts of recurrent floods, droughts and other hazards that further exacerbate the poverty situation.

“Life has been a calamity for 3.7 million Filipino families with no food, no education, and no health care. The numbers are steadily increasing with the impacts of extreme weather conditions regularly happening nowadays,” Briones said.

Social Watch and UNMC earlier launched the “I Vote for MDG” campaign, which encourages voters to know their candidates in next year’s elections.

It urged voters to support only candidates with the MDGs as their platform of government.

The Stand Up campaign has set Oct. 16, 17 and 18 as its global mobilization of people to demand world leaders to deliver on their promise to end poverty by 2015.

The event will be coupled with a series of activities organized by multi-sectoral groups to be held nationwide during the three-day campaign, such as fund-raising marathons, environmental cleanup, community dialogues and tree planting, among others. – Jose Rodel Clapano

SWS: GMA satisfaction rating slips further to -38% By Helen Flores (The Philippine Star) Updated October 09, 2009 12:00 AM

MANILA, Philippines - Six out of 10 Filipinos remained dissatisfied with the performance of President Arroyo in the past three months, bringing down her new net satisfaction rating to a “bad” -38 as discontent worsened outside the capital and across all economic classes, the latest survey of the Social Weather Stations (SWS) showed.

The Third Quarter 2009 SWS survey conducted from Sept. 18 to 21 found 23 percent satisfied and 62 percent dissatisfied with the President’s performance, rounding up to a net rating of -38, classified as “bad.” It fell seven percentage points from -31 (26 percent satisfied, 56 percent dissatisfied) in June 2009.

The non-commissioned survey used face-to-face interviews with 1,800 adults divided into random samples of 300 each in Metro Manila and Mindanao, and 600 each in Balance of Luzon and Visayas.

SWS defined net satisfaction ratings using the scale +50 and above, “very good”; +30 to +49, “good”; +10 to +29, “moderate”; +9 to -9, “neutral”; -10 to -29, “poor”; -30 to -49, “bad”; -50 or lower, “very bad.”

It has sampling error margins of plus or minus 2.3 percent for national percentages, plus or minus six percent for Metro Manila and Mindanao, and plus or minus four percent for Balance of Luzon and Visayas.

SWS said the President’s overall satisfaction rating was pulled down by “worsening dissatisfaction” in Luzon outside of Metro Manila, Visayas, and Mindanao, and “continued high dissatisfaction” in Metro Manila.

Mrs. Arroyo’s third quarter satisfaction rating in Metro Manila remained at -46 (21 percent satisfied, 66 percent dissatisfied) in September, statistically the same at -46 (19 percent satisfied, 65 percent dissatisfied) in June.

Her satisfaction rating in Luzon outside Metro Manila went down 13 points to -45 (19 percent satisfied, 64 percent dissatisfied) in September, from -32 (23 percent satisfied, 55 percent dissatisfied) in June.

It declined four points in the Visayas, at -32 (26 percent satisfied, 58 percent dissatisfied) in September, from “poor” -28 (30 percent satisfied, 57 percent dissatisfied) in June.

It fell six points in Mindanao, to -27 (30 percent satisfied, 57 percent dissatisfied) in September, from -21 (31 percent satisfied, 53 percent dissatisfied) in June.

The President’s urban satisfaction rating went down seven points in September to -44 (21 percent satisfied, 61 percent dissatisfied) from -37 (23 percent satisfied, 61 percent dissatisfied) in June.

Her rural satisfaction rating went down 11 points to -34 (25 percent satisfied, 59 percent dissatisfied) in September from -23 (28 percent satisfied, 52 percent dissatisfied) in June.

Dissatisfaction intensifies in all classes

The President’s net satisfaction rating declined drastically by 26 points in classes ABC, at “very bad” -54 (17 percent satisfied, 70 percent dissatisfied) in the third quarter, from a “poor” -28 (27 percent satisfied, 55 percent dissatisfied) in the second quarter.

Dissatisfaction with her performance also went up in class E, with her rating worsening by 12 points to “bad” -34 (26 percent satisfied, 60 percent dissatisfied) in September, from “poor” -22 (30 percent satisfied, 52 percent dissatisfied) in June.

Her satisfaction rating among the masa, or those in class D, went down five points to -39 (23 percent satisfied, 62 percent dissatisfied) in September, from -34 (24 percent satisfied, 58 percent dissatisfied) in June.

The latest survey also showed that men and women are equally dissatisfied with the President’s performance.

Among women, her satisfaction rating fell 11 points to “bad” -37 (23 percent satisfied, 61 percent dissatisfied) in September from “poor” -26 (28 percent satisfied, 54 percent dissatisfied) in June.


Chief News Editor: Sol Jose Vanzi

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