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Marcos Jr holds big lead in poll for Philippine presidency

THE STAR – The son and namesake of late Philippine dictator Ferdinand Marcos has maintained a strong lead in the Philippines’ presidential election race, according to an opinion poll published yesterday.

The February 18-23 survey by independent pollster Pulse Asia showed Marcos cornering 60 per cent of support from 2,400 respondents, unchanged from January, with his closest rival Leni Robredo, the incumbent vice president, sliding from 16 per cent to 15 per cent.

The other main presidential contenders for the May 9 contest – Manila Mayor Francisco Domagoso, boxing great Manny Pacquiao and Senator Panfilo Lacson – received 10 per cent, eight per cent and two per cent, respectively.

Sara Duterte-Carpio, the daughter of incumbent President Rodrigo Duterte, remained the top choice for vice president, with a 29-point lead over her closest rival, Senate speaker Vicente Sotto.

Duterte-Carpio is the running mate of Marcos. In the Philippines, the vice president is elected separately to the president.

More than 67 million Filipinos, including 1.7 million overseas, have registered to vote in the elections, which historically have a high turnout.

Posts contested include the presidency, vice presidency, 12 senate seats, 300 lower house seats, and roughly 18,000 local positions. Official campaigning began on February 8.

Philippine presidential candidate Ferdinand Marcos Jr. PHOTO: THE STAR