MANILA -- Former President Benigno Aquino cast his vote Monday, saying the public's sentiments against government are more "real" compared to opinion polls that show the opposition's senatorial slate losing to pro-administration bets.
Of the 8 candidates of Otso Diretso, only Aquino's cousin, Sen. Bam Aquino, has a statistical chance of winning according to a May 3 to 6 Pulse Asia poll.
"May sumulat sa isang dyaryo... kung survey lang natin dadaanin, wag na raw tayong maghalalan, mas mabilis iyung survey," Aquino told reporters in Tarlac City.
(Someone wrote in the newspaper, if we will just base on the survey, let's not have an election, because the survey would be faster.)
"Sabi ng sumulat: pila ka sa bigas, pila ka sa tubig, ang tunay na may sala pinapakawalan, ang walang sala nanlaban, asan na, asan na kaming namatayan... Palagay ko mas totoo ang sentimyentong iyun kaysa mga survey na nakikita natin," he added.
(The writer said: you fall in line for rice, for water, those who did wrong are freed, those who have not done anything wrong are accused of fighting authorities, what about us who lost loved ones? I think that sentiment is more real than the surveys.)
Otso Diretso candidates have criticized President Rodrigo Duterte anti-narcotics crackdown that has killed thousands, as well as a water service interruption that affected some 1.2 households in the east zone of Metro Manila in March.
The tirades, however, failed to dent the ratings of administration candidates. Public satisfaction with Duterte in April also bounced back to a +66, a personal best he first achieved in 2017.
Aquino admitted that it was difficult to raise awareness for opposition bets due to scant resources.
"Sana naman talagang sumipa iyung pag-uusap ng mga tao at napakilala," said Aquino.
(We really hope that the conversations kick in and the candidates were introduced.)