Only one in four Filipinos are aware of the federal system of government being promoted by President Rodrigo Duterte's administration, according to the latest Social Weather Stations (SWS) survey.
The First Quarter 2018 Social Weather Survey also found out that 75% of respondents only learned about it only during the survey.
Of the 1,200 respondents nationwide, 37% agree with a federal system of government, 29% disagree with it, while 34% were undecided.
According to SWS, which released the results early Thursday, 58% of respondents also don’t know the name of the "state" being promoted in their area.
The SWS survey showed that 58% don’t know or were not familiar about the matter, 4% do not agree with the change, 4% said there is no name yet, and 1% said no one in their locality is pushing federalism. Two percent did not give an answer.
Of the 31% who were able to provide names, the top responses were Philippine State/State of the Philippines/United States of the Philippines (2%), Dinagat State/State of Dinagat/United States of Dinagat (2%), State of Davao/Davao State (2%), and State of Cavite/Cavite State/United States of Cavite (2%).
Awareness about a federal system of government was highest in Mindanao at 37%, followed by Metro Manila at 28%, Visayas at 22%, and Balance Luzon at 20%, according to SWS.
It was slightly higher in rural areas at 27%, compared to urban areas at 24%. Meanwhile, it was highest among college graduates at 53%, followed by high school graduates at 26%, non-elementary graduates at 17 %, and elementary graduates at 16%.
SWS added that awareness about the federal system was highest among Muslims at 51%, followed by Iglesia ni Cristo members at 37%, other Christians at 32%, and Catholics at 22%.
Support for the federal system of government was also highest in Mindanao with a very strong net agreement score of +43 (59% agree, 16% disagree), followed by Metro Manila at a neutral +7 (38% agree, 31% disagree), Visayas at a neutral +2 (32% agree, 30% disagree), and Balance Luzon at a neutral –8 (27% agree, 35% disagree).
Net agreement with the federal system was higher in urban areas at +11 (39% agree, 28% disagree), compared to rural areas at a +4 (34% agree, 30% disagree).
Meanwhile, support for a federal system of government was highest among college graduates at a +27 (50% agree, 23% disagree), followed by high school graduates at a +5 (37% agree, 32% disagree), non-elementary graduates at a +4 (28% agree, 24% disagree), and elementary graduates at a +3 (33% agree, 30% disagree).
Support for the federal system of government was highest among Muslims at a +47 (61% agree, 14% disagree), followed by other Christians at a +9 (35% agree, 26% disagree), Catholics at +4 (35% agree, 30% disagree, correctly rounded), and Iglesia ni Cristo members at +2 (39% agree, 37% disagree).
"Support for the federal system of government was directly related to people’s trust in Rodrigo Duterte, their satisfaction with his performance as President, and their satisfaction with the overall Duterte administration," SWS said in a statement.
Gainers and optimists
Support for the federal system of government was stronger among gainers, or those whose personal quality of life is better now compared to 12 months ago, and among optimists, or those whose personal quality of life will be better 12 months from now, according to SWS.
Net agreement with the federal system was a +17 (42% agree, 25% disagree) among gainers, compared to the +2 (34% agree, 32% disagree) among those whose quality of life was unchanged compared to 12 months ago, and –2 (31% agree, 33% disagree) among losers, or those whose quality of life is worse now compared to 12 months ago.
It was a moderately strong +16 (42% agree, 26% disagree) among optimists, compared to the neutral +1 (33% agree minus 32% disagree) among those who believe their quality of life will be the same 12 months from now, and the neutral +4 (34% agree minus 30% disagree) among pessimists, or those who believe their quality of life will be worse 12 months from now.
The March 2018 Social Weather Survey, which was conducted from March 23-27, 2018 using face-to-face interviews of 1,200 adults nationwide, had sampling error margins of ±3 percent at the national level, and ±6 percent at the regional level.