The Aquino administration spent over P5 million for surveys in 2012 or a year before the May 2013 elections, the Commission on Audit (COA) reported on Thursday.
Based on COA findings, the Presidential Communications Development and Strategic Planning Office (PCDSPO) headed by Secretary Ricky Carandang spent P5,577,816.09 million for surveys—an item that the PCDSPO office did not spend for in 2011.
In the same COA report, the PCDSPO described its survey expenses as costs incurred in the conduct of survey by the agencies such as the Pulse Asia and the Social Weather Stations that will assess the public’s perspectives on national issues, the performance of the administration and other related issues.
“This is in line with the function of the agency to control and supervise the conduct of market research, monitoring public opinion and gathering, as well as the use and analysis of other relevant data as may be necessary,” the PCDSPO said.
Moreover, Carandang’s office more than doubled its expenditure for consultancy services by shelling out P4,441,855.78 in 2012—higher than the 2011 figure which is only pegged at P2,023,066.63.
The PCDSPO traced the increase of spending in consultancy services because of the hiring of additional consultants necessary in performing the various functions of the agency.
The Aquino administration, especially President Benigno Aquino 3rd, has always gathered high trust and satisfaction ratings based on both Pulse Asia and SWS surveys.
The President’s popularity and huge political capital was tested and eventually proven in the May polls.
The President named the administration’s Senate slate as Team PNoy, PNoy being his nickname (an acronym for President Noy)—a strategy that apparently worked since nine of the 12 Senate bets won in the May elections.
These nine are: Senators Grace Poe-Llamanzares, Loren Legarda, Alan Peter Cayetano, Francis Escudero, Juan Edgardo Angara, Paolo Benigno “Bam” Aquino 4th, Aquilino “Koko” Pimentel, Antonio Trillanes 4th and Cynthia Villar.