MANILA - Political analysts said on Wednesday that momentum is on the side of Vice President Maria Leonor "Leni" Robredo's presidential bid, as her voter preference numbers went up in Pulse Asia's latest pre-election survey.
University of the Philippines political scientist Dr. Aries Arugay told ABS-CBN's TeleRadyo that the movement is consistent with what happened in past presidential surveys held during March.
"Sinabi ko na yung February survey, status-quo survey siya, walang gumalaw no," Arugay said. "Kung titignan natin, yung mga eventually mananalo ng eleksyon compared noong 2016 tsaka noong 2010, sa ngayong buwang survey sila gumagalaw."
(I had said that the February survey was a status-quo survey where nobody moved. If we will look at it, those who eventually win an election compared to 2016 and 2010, they only move during this [March] month.)
In Pulse Asia's latest pre-election survey, conducted between March 17 to 21, Robredo came out with 24 percent voter preference -- a 9-point increase from 15 percent voter preference in February.
As for the survey frontrunner Ferdinand "Bongbong" Marcos Jr., he came out with 56 percent voter preference compared to the 60 percent he had in the previous month.
When asked if the momentum would be enough for Robredo to overtake Marcos, Arugay said the former senator's survey scores could be on the downtrend.
"Kung status quo survey noong February, momentum survey ito. So it seems like even if there is... ang sabi ni Dr. (Ana) Tabunda ng Pulse there is no significant decline in Marcos Junior, there's also no significant increase," he said.
(If Februrary's survey was a status-quo survey, then this is a momentum survey. Dr. Ana Tabunda of Pulse Asia said that there was no significant decline in Marcos' numbers, but there's also no significant increase.)
Arugay also pointed out that events related to the election, such as Robredo rallies in Mindanao and Northern Luzon as well as her house-to -house campaign was not yet covered in March's survey.
As for political strategist Dr. Dante Velasco, it's too early to say if Robredo would win the election, though she is gaining ground.
"If the momentum will continue, and yung political rallies niya magaganda rin, I think from 24 percent, posibleng tataas pa yan. It is possible na kung tataas yung si Leni Robredo, then naturally may bababa, no?" Velasco said.
(If the momentum will continue and her political rallies will go well, then I think it could still rise beyond 24 percent. It is possible that if Leni Robredo goes up, then naturally someone will go down.)
He also said it's possible that if Marcos' survey performance is on the downtrend, Robredo could then catch up.
"Kayang humabol. Actually one is going faster, (another) one is going slower. Hindi yung hinahabol mo hindi maabot. So, if one is going faster, one is slowing down, mahahabol yan," Velasco said.
(They can still catch up. One is going faster, another is going slower. It's not as if they're running toward something they can't reach. So, if one is going faster, one is slowing down, then they'll be able to catch up.)
He added that the Robredo campaign was benefitting from volunteerism of supporters, something that the Marcos campaign could learn from.
"For Leni, she has to continue fueling this movement and inspiring this volunteerism," Velasco said. "On the part of BBM, I think they would also have to learn from the volunteer spirit. They should also harness the initiatives of their supporters, and they'll see how they can do it."