BY CARLA GOMEZ [VISAYAN DAILY STAR]
Villanueva, who was campaigning in Bacolod City yesterday with his running mate, Perfecto Yasay, and his senatorial bets, said Bagumbayan standard bearer Richard Gordon has asked him to join in the filing of a suit against survey firms that have ranked them as tail-enders in the presidential race.
In response, Villanueva said he has asked his lawyers to look into the request of Gordon because he, too, believes that the surveys have been unfair to him.
Gordon, who was in Bacolod City last week, said he will file charges against the Social Weather Station and Pulse Asia, that, he said, have been creating unfair trending at his expense, before the May 10 elections.
Villanueva said he does not believe he is a tail-ender in the presidential race because the reality in the field is different.
BPP has volunteers campaigning for him and his team down to the barangay level and they have drawn crowds to their rallies, he said.
He has received reports that the survey firms do not even include his name when they conduct their surveys, that is why his ratings appear to be very low, Villanueva, like Gordon, said.
It is impossible for a survey on 1,500 or even 2,000 respondents to determine how 50 million Filipinos will vote, Villanueva said.
He noted that when Fidel Ramos ran for president he was at the bottom of the surveys yet he won the presidency.
Villanueva also cited how, in 1948, Americans expected Thomas Dewey to beat incumbent United States President Harry Truman and were wrong.
“Dewey Defeats Truman” was a famously incorrect banner headline on the front page of the first edition of the Chicago Tribune on Nov. 3, 1948 because of this, he recalled.
Villanueva said surveys that project “frontrunners” precondition minds of voters not to think and vote for those who will best serve the country.
“Political analysts have already concluded that whoever is most likely to be the winner is being secretly supported by the powers-that-be,” Villanueva said.
Villanueva said his BPP team is the only group not beholden to vested interests and the administration of President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo, unlike the survey frontrunners.
“The candidates of Bangon Pilipinas are not beholden to any traditional political or economic powers, we are only beholden to God and the Filipino people,” he said
“If voted president, Villanueva said he will make sure that Arroyo does not become Speaker of the House and that prosecution for wrongs committed will be carried out.
Villanueva also said that, as president, he will eradicate corruption that has been a main hindrance to the economic growth of the country.
He will push for an economic revolution that will ensure the creation of wealth and the dispersal of wealth to uplift the lives of the people, Villanueva said.
With Villanueva and Yasay yesterday were his senatorial candidates Dr. Zafrullah Alonto, Imelda Papin, Zosimo Jesus Paredes, Kata Inocencio, Count Habib Adz Nikabulin, Alex Tinsay and Dr. Israel Virgines.
Alonto said he will work for the restoration of peace and order in Mindanao and for the poor. “If I cannot bring peace in Mindanao, I will resign from the Senate,” Alonto said.
Papin, a singer and vice governor of Camarines Sur, said she has worked at helping malnourished children and bringing projects for the poor. She gave up a successful singing and TV and radio hosting career in Las Vegas because she wanted to be part of the move for change, Papin added.
Paredes said if elected senator he will concentrate on the peace process in Mindanao and work for universal health care.
Inocencio, who had been a broadcast journalist for 24 years, said she will continue work especially for the welfare of children.
Nikabulin said his advocacy is for lasting peace in Mindanao, pointing out that hostilities have been caused by economic bankruptcy and corruption.
Tinsay, who has been a broadcaster for 30 years, said if elected senator he will work for the professionalization of media by requiring licensure examinations, protection from starvation wages and hazard pay for dangerous assignments.
Virgines said he will work for the liberalization of education.*CPG