FINALLY he’s on top.
Liberal Party (LP) standard-bearer Manuel Roxas 2nd bested other presidential candidates not as the top choice of voters but as the biggest campaign ad spender.
Research done by AC Nielsen showed that Roxas shelled out the most money for campaign ads last year—a whopping P774 million. The amount covered expenses for political advertisements from January to December 2015.
Vice President Jejomar Binay, the presidential candidate of the United Nationalist Alliance (UNA), placed second, spending P695 million, based on the Nielsen report.
Senator Grace Poe ranked third at P694 million.
She was followed by Davao City Mayor Rodrigo Duterte who spent P129 million.
Duterte only officially declared his candidacy in November.
But prior to the release of the Nielsen report showing Roxas as the top political ad spender, an earlier report also released by Nielsen showed Binay as the top television ad spender, having paid P596 million for TV ads last year.
The report that covers the period January 1 to November 30, 2015, put Poe in second position with a total ad spending of P448 million.
Roxas ranked third at P425 million.
Rep. Barry Gutierrez, spokesman for the Koalisyon ng Daang Matuwid, said the Nielsen survey showing Roxas as the third biggest spender showed that the campaign of the LP presidential bet is focused more on grassroots communications and less emphasis on “air war.”
He added that it also showed that rivals of the former Interior secretary are more capable of spending big on television ads than the administration candidate who is accused of using government money to fund his campaign.
Gutierrez issued the statement before the camp of the Vice President presented an updated and inclusive report by Nielsen showing Roxas as the overall top spender on political advertisements.
Joey Salgado, spokesman for Binay, said the Nielsen report showing the Vice President as top ad spender only covers 11 months.
He added that Nielsen research did not include ads placed by Roxas supporters like the Mar Roxas for President Movement and Mar Roxas School Alumni.
The campaign period for candidates for national positions such as President, Vice President, senators and party-list representatives will run from February 9, 2016 to May 7, 2016.
Under Republic Act 7166 or the Synchronized Elections Law of 1991, candidates for President and Vice President are allowed to spend P10 for every voter, while bets for other posts can spend P3 per voter in the constituency where they have filed their certificates of candidacy.The Commission on Elections earlier urged Congress to increase the campaign spending of candidates, saying the ceiling is no longer realistic.