Filipinos across Canada are moving to help elect crime-fighter Rodrigo Duterte as the next President of the Philippines.
A nationwide day of prayer will be held on May 1 to support Duterte’s candidacy.
In Vancouver, the May 1 observance of the National Day of Prayer for Radical Change in the Philippines will be held from 1 p.m. to 9 p.m. The event will take place at 8578 Fraser Street.
Overseas Filipino voters have started casting their votes on April 9. The overseas voting will last until the actual day of elections in the Philippines on May 9.
The Philippine Consulate General in Vancouver will have ballots for voters registered to take part in the voting.
Similar prayer events will also take place in the provinces of Alberta, Ontario, Manitoba, Newfoundland and Labrado, Nova Scotia, Quebec, Prince Edward Island, Quebec, and Saskatchewan.
Duterte, currently Mayor of Davao City, and Senator Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. were the runaway winners in the presidential and vice presidential pre-election survey conducted by Pulse Asia.
The survey, commissioned by ABS-CBN and conducted from March 29 to April 3, showed Duterte enjoying a five-percentage point lead over his closest rival Sen. Grace Poe. Duterte got the nod of 30 percent of the respondents while Poe had 25 percent.
In the vice presidential race, Marcos pulled away from Sen. Francis “Chiz” Escudero with 28 percent against the latter’s 21 percent.
On April 11, the Social Weather Stations (SWS) survey showed Duterte and Marcos leading the two races. The poll was conducted from March 30 to April 2.
The Pulse Asia survey showed that Poe suffered a three-percent drop from her rating in the previous survey.
The latest poll used face-to-face interviews with 4,000 respondents and had a ±1.5% error margin at the 95 percent confidence level.
In the Pulse Asia survey held from March 15 to 20, Duterte placed second to Poe with a rating of 24 percent, four percentage points lower than the senator’s 28 percent.
Vice President Jejomar Binay of the United Nationalist Alliance and Liberal Party’s Manuel “Mar” Roxas 2nd were statistically tied at third place with 20 percent and 19 percent, respectively.
Based on the previous survey, Binay also dropped by three percentage points while Roxas’ rating was unchanged.
Sen. Miriam Defensor-Santiago got only two percent.
Respondents belonging to socioeconomic classes ABC and D chose Duterte at 41 percent and 31 percent, respectively. Poe was the preferred candidate of respondents in class E, getting 29 percent of the respondents’ votes.
Duterte was also the top choice for respondents in Mindanao with 55 percent while Poe took most of the votes of respondents from Luzon with 31 percent. Roxas topped Visayas with 34 percent.
Duterte was chosen by 32 percent of voters in Metro Manila, followed by Poe with 30 percent, Binay, 20 percent, Roxas, 11 percent and Santiago, two percent.
The mayor said he was humbled by the survey results.
In a statement, Duterte campaign manager Leoncio Evasco said their camp welcomes the latest survey results with “guarded optimism.”
“We are humbled by the results of the recent survey which have Mayor Duterte now in the lead in voter preference,” Evasco added.
“While we welcome this with guarded optimism, we are fully aware that the battle is not yet over. We will continue to build on this momentum and aim for a complete, decisive and indisputable victory for genuine change,” he said.
Evasco urged Duterte’s supporters “to continue to reach out to the undecided.”
“We need to convert and convince others that the path to real change is through the unparalleled and decisive leadership that Mayor Duterte has been providing us,” he said.
Binay’s camp said the survey results will prompt the Vice President to “work harder, together with our various support groups, as election day nears.”
“The Vice President will continue to persevere to touch the hearts and minds of the people that his anti-poor programs will effectively uplift their lives,” Rico Quicho, Binay’s campaign spokesman, said.
Meanwhile, Marcos said the new survey “is proof that our message for national unity resonates with the Filipino people.”