Arroyo becomes usual suspect for Palace

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Malacañang on Wednesday justified why the dissatisfaction rating of President Benigno Aquino 3rd reflects on corruption in the previous administration. In two separate surveys released on Monday, the President’s public satisfaction ratings took a nosedive largely brought on by the pork barrel fund scandal.

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According to the Social Weather Stations (SWS), Aquino’s trust rating dropped to “good” in September from “very good” in June.

Another survey conducted by Pulse Asia Research Inc. showed that 45 percent of Filipinos, or close to half of adult Filipinos, are calling for the abolition of the pork barrel.

The Aquino administration attributed the dip to the alleged misuse of people’s money during the Arroyo’s term.

In a text message, Palace spokesman Edwin Lacierda admitted that it was public outrage over the pork barrel scam that has dragged down the President’s public approval ratings in two major surveys.

However, he said that President Aquino was not the subject of the Commission on Audit (COA) report that affect the public’s sentiments against corruption.

The alleged misuse of pork barrel funds by some lawmakers was bared by a COA report covering the years from 2007 to 2009.

Lacierda also denied that the President is blaming former President Gloria Arroyo for the reversal of his popularity.

”Not true. It’s a statement of fact that he [Aquino] was not the president when the scam took place between 2007-2009 which is the period covered by COA Special Audit report,” Lacierda added Palace deputy spokesman Abigail Valte also said that it was the misuse of people’s money, which was discovered from 2007 to 2009, ”triggered the knowledge of the public on this scam.”

”It’s not the President who is involved, but rather the select lawmakers that are being accused or that are the subject of these allegations,” she said.

”However, we do recognize that there is a general outrage about how these funds have been spent, or how these funds have been misused, and some of that may be directed again to the present administration despite the fact that we were not the subject of the COA report that triggered the knowledge of the public on this scam. [It was] from 2007 to 2009,” Valte added.

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