By NITZ ARANCON
MAYOR Oscar Moreno’s ticket has dominated an election survey conducted by the research group of the Jesuit-run Xavier University but former congressman Rufus Rodriguez and a few local opposition candidates for city council seats could spoil the party of the PDP-Laban here in next month’s elections.
The survey results, presented yesterday by Xavier’s Kinaadman: University Research Office (Kuro) deputy director Dr. Astrid Cinco, showed Moreno with a comfortable lead of 61.5 percent over Rodriguez’s mayoral candidate, Jose Gabriel La Viña, who ranked a poor second with a 16-percent voter preference.
Moreno’s running mate, reelectionist Vice Mayor Raineir Joaquin Uy, also had a comfortable lead with 55 percent over former mayor and Padayon Pilipino founder Vicente Emano’s 23.6 percent.
The XU-funded survey also showed most members in Moreno’s PDP-Laban ticket leading in the city’s two districts. But two Padayon Pilipino candidates in the 2nd District — Councilor Demotilo Acenas Jr. and ex-councilor Ramon Tabor — found themselves in a statistical tie with five other top candidates from the PDP-Laban.
Rodriguez, a candidate of the Centrist Democratic Party-Padayon Pilipino coalition, emerged as the leader in the congressional race in the city’s 2nd District with a voter preference of 59.2 percent.
His strongest rival and Moreno’s candidate, Councilor Yan Lam Lim, ranked poor second with 19.4 percent, followed by Partiido Federal ng Pilipinas’s Roger Villazorda with 0.9 percent. Kinaadman said only 15.9 percent of the voters were undecided while 3.1 percent had no response as to their preference for a congressman. It said the margin of error was at +4.7 percentage points with 95-percent confidence level.
In the 1st District, the survey results showed that Rep. Rolando Uy would likely win a reelection with a voter preference of 66.1 percent over former vice mayor Caesar Ian Acenas’s 16.4 percent, and Partido Federal ng Pilipinas’s Gil Banaag with 1.9 percent. Kinaadman said undecided voters were at 15.6 percent, and the margin of error +4.7 percentage points with 95-percent confidence level.
The Xavier group, in a press release distributed by the university’s communications office, said the survey results showed Moreno having a “clear lead” over La Viña, a former undersecretary of the Department of Agriculture.
Kinaadman said the results showed that Moreno is the “favored candidate” in the two districts — his voter preference is 65.3 percent in the 1st District and 58.1 percent in the 2nd District.
The survey results showed independent candidates Felix Borres and Benjamin Contreras losing the mayoral race. Borres registered a voter preference of only 0.6 percent over Contreras’s 0.3 percent.
La Viña registered a voter preference of 13.2 percent in the 1st District and 18.5 percent in the 2nd District while Borres and Contreras received less than one percent each in both districts.
La Viña, Borres and Contreras however can still work to win the 21.4 percent of the undecided voters to their side although that would not be enough to displace Moreno, based on the survey results. Of the respondents, 0.2 percent had no response. Kinaadman said the margin of error was at +3.4 percentage points with a confidence level of 95 percent.
Moreno’s running mate, Vice Mayor Uy, is headed for a reelection based on the survey results showing him with a voter preference of 60.3 percent in the 1st District and 50.2 percent in the 2nd District.
His rival Emano, erstwhile Cagayan de Oro political kingpin, only registered an 18.5-percent voter preference in the 1st District and 28.2 percent in the 2nd District. Kinaadman said 21.2 percent and 21.3 percent of the respondents in the two districts, respectively, were undecided. According to Kinaadman, the undecided voters accounted for 21.3 percent while 0.1 percent had no response. The margin of error was at +3.4 percentage points with a 95-percent confidence level.
The survey results also showed a possible a big win of Moreno’s candidates for city council seats in the 1st District (in alphabetical order based on surnames): Roger Abaday, Romeo Calizo, Reuben Daba, Edna Dahino, George Goking, Zaldy Ocon and Jay Pascual.
Those in the 8th-to-13th spots are Jose Abbu, Ronald Acenas, Alden Bacal, Jundabs Yamut Daba, Mandangan Darimbang and Lordan Suan. Except for Darimbang, all are Padayon Pilipino members.
In the 2nd District (in alphabetical order based on surnames): Dometilo Acenas, Edgar Cabanlas, Maria Lourdes Gaane, Teodulfo Lao Jr., Ian Mark Nacaya, Eric Salcedo and Ramon Tabor. Except for Acenas and Tabor, all are running under Moreno’s ticket.
In the 8th to 13th spots: Girlie Balaba, Suzette Daba, Alexander Dacer, Leon Gan Jr., James Judith II, and Jocelyn Rodriguez.
The city will be electing 16 councilors or eight for each district.
Kinaadman said the survey was conducted among 800 registered voters in the city from April 4 to April 11 or a week after the start of the local campaign period.
It said it used the systematic random sampling in the selection of households. The sample size of 800 was allocated proportionately to the 1st and 2nd Districts.
Kinaadman said it would conduct a second survey closer to election day, and the results would likely be released on the first week of May. (with XU Communications Office)