THE camp of Vice President Jejomar Binay urged voters to be careful in believing surveys as the May 2016 election nears.
The Binay-led opposition United Nationalist Alliance (UNA) cautioned the public on “trending surveys” showing the elections as a two-way race.
“It appears that ‘trending’ is being done to make it a two-man race. It is not. The reality is this: It’s a tight race. No one is a clear winner at this stage,” UNA communications director Joey Salgado said in a statement.
“Surveys are a dime-a-dozen as election day approaches. Kaya dapat mas maingat sa paniniwala sa mga surveys [That is why we should be more careful in believing surveys],” he added.
Survey results will not determine the outcome of the presidential election, Salgado added.
“It all boils down to hard work now, and ground game on May 9. But more importantly, it boils down to who among the candidates understand the poor, has the track record, and is ready to take on the pressing problems of the country, especially eliminating poverty, without ‘eliminating’ the poor. Only Binay,” he said.
“It’s not who wins the surveys. It’s who wins the election,” he pointed out.
Salgado said cited the result of a recent survey which was conducted during the Holy Week and ended on April 1.
“There is a new survey out. The fieldwork was done during the Holy Week. It is unheard of for pollsters to do surveys during this period, as voters are either in deep spiritual reflection or on vacation mode. They simply shut off from the world. Politics is the last thing on their mind,” he said.
The opposition party also criticized Ombudsman Conchita Morales-Carpio for continuing to harass UNA by filing cases against Binay’s allies.
UNA spokesperson Mon Ilagan said the Ombudsman is overzealous in its effort to damage the reputation of close allies and supporters of Binay who are running for elective posts.
The Office of the Ombudsman has filed graft charges against UNA re-electionist Cebu Rep. Gwen Garcia over the construction of the Cebu International Convention Center (CICC) in 2006. It also affirmed the graft complaint against former Laguna governor ER Ejercito over an insurance agreement the municipality of Pagsanjan entered into in 2008.
On Tuesday, the Ombudsman announced the indictment of former Special Action Force commander Getulio Napenas in connection with the Mamasapano incident in January 2015.
Ilagan noted that the agenda is to derail the campaign of Garcia and Ejercito. The two are active Binay supporters in their respective vote-rich provinces.
Cebu has 2.7 million registered voters, while Laguna has about 1.7 million registered voters.
“Look at the timing of these cases being filed. They sat on it for almost a decade and now they resurrect it? It’s quite sad that the Office of the Ombudsman allows itself to be used as a tool by the Administration to harass the political opposition. It has also become a willing accomplice to the administration party’s propaganda machine,” Ilagan said.