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SWS survey shows 84% believe PH democracy works

October 08, 2018 - Monday 10:10 AM by MindaNews

Contrary to the declaration made by Senator Antonio Trillanes IV that democracy in the Philippines had “officially” died last month when a Makati court ordered his arrest, a vast majority of Filipinos believe democracy here is alive and kicking.

The latest Social Weather Stations (SWS) survey showed that 84 percent of adult Filipinos are satisfied with the way democracy works in the country.

According to the 2018 SWS third quarter survey held from September 15-23, 2018, the number has increased from 78 percent in March 2018 and nearly tied the record-high 86 percent registered in September 2016.

The survey was conducted just days before Trillanes made his “democracy is dead” statement.

“Namatay ho ang demokrasya ngayong araw na ito (Democracy died today),” Trillanes had told reporters on September 25 right before police served him a warrant of arrest at the Senate.

Trillanes had been holed out in the Senate building for weeks after President Rodrigo Duterte revoked the amnesty granted to him by then-President Benigno Aquino over the 2003 Oakwood mutiny and the 2007 Manila Peninsula siege.

But according to the SWS, satisfaction with the way democracy works “has ranged from 59 percent to 86 percent since June 2010.”

The pollster found that 59 percent of the 1,200 adult respondents said democracy is always preferable to any other kind of government while 20 percent answered they sometimes prefer authoritarianism and 19 percent said it “does not matter.”

SWS called 59 percent the "committed democrats," the 20 percent the "conditional authoritarians," and 19 percent the "indifferent.”

The figures, SWS said, "hardly moved" from the March 2018 survey, which showed that 60 percent are committed democrats, 20 percent are conditional authoritarians, and 21 percent are indifferent.

Due to the six-point increase in satisfaction with the way democracy works and steady figures regarding preference for democracy, the SWS said the September 2018 survey found increases in satisfaction with democracy among committed democrats, conditional authoritarians, and those who were indifferent.

It said satisfaction was the highest among committed democrats at 88 percent or also a six-point increase from 83 percent in March this year, while satisfaction jumped by five points among conditional authoritarians from 75 percent to 80 percent in the same period.

Although satisfaction was the lowest among those who were indifferent at 74 percent, the score was still six points better than the 68 percent in the March 2018 survey.

The question on "satisfaction in the way democracy works" originated from the Eurobarometer surveys and is also in standard use in Latin American and Asian barometer projects, according to SWS.

SWS said an average of 56 percent of Europeans are satisfied with the way democracy works in their country while only 36 percent has been recorded in Latin America. (With a report from PNA)