No quick fix to poverty, Palace says
MANILA, Philippines - The Aquino administration needs to do more to improve the economy and solve poverty in the country, a Palace official said Monday night.
Presidential Communications Secretary Ricky Carandang said this includes creating more jobs for the people.
"While a significant number of our population is still poor, we have to keep working harder to reduce the poverty numbers," he told ANC. "That is something that we don't deny and will continue to work on."
Malacañang earlier expressed surprise by the latest Social Weather Stations survey showing a dip in President Benigno Aquino's ratings.
Based on a survey conducted by the social weather stations from May 24 to May 27, people satisfied with Aquino' performance dropped to 63%, while those dissatisfied went higher to 21% for a net satisfaction rating of +49, which is seven points lower than the President's March rating.
The President's net satisfaction rating in the ABC crowd dropped from +62 in March to only +25 in May.
His rating remains at +41 among the class D and and at +50 among class E.
Despite the decline in the overall rating of the President, the Palace considers it as still high and says it remains to be the highest among presidents since 1999.
No overnight solution
Carandang said issues that the President got low marks in the SWS survey can't be solved overnight.
"When you say reducing poverty, no one said it happens right away," he said, citing other countries where government intervention has taken place.
"It took several years before they began to feel the the effects of government intervention on a sustained basis," he said.
"The anti-poverty programs will take some time before people will feel them on a sustained basis," he added.
Carandang said the Aquino administration has been implementing a road map since the President took office.
"The roadmap has been clear from day 1, since we assumed office -- increase spending on healthcare, education, the conditional cash transfer," he said.
He added that the Philippines is using the formula of other countries like Mexico and Brazil to solve poverty.
"They've done this thing for years. They've shown real, concrete, undeniable results. But it takes time," he said.
Carandang said the President mapped this out during his campaign trail.
"We've done that. We've put our money where our mouth is."
He also said the amount of money spent by the government on social services is roughly around 30% of the national budget.
"No administration in history has spent this much money on soial interventions, and specifically, at the reductions of poverty and at promoting equitable growth," he said.