Press Release
March 14, 2016


ILOILO--With less than a week to go before the second presidential debate, Sen. Grace Poe is taking notes from her meetings with students, farmers, vendors, senior citizens and other marginalized sectors on her campaign trail.

Poe, who continues to lead the five presidential hopefuls in voters' preference surveys, said her preparation for the March 20 debate includes getting important insights from the people who are affected by the issues to be discussed.

"Ngayon nagpunta kami dito sa Visayas ulit. Kausap natin 'yung vice governor at 'yung mga ibang mayors. Ano ang effect ng El Niño sa mga pananim? Kasama 'yan sa debate. Kahit na walang specific on agriculture, kailangan pa rin natin ma-discuss 'yung plight ng ating mga kababayan dito," Poe said during a visit to Santa Barbara in Iloilo.

The senator said her knowledge of many issues comes from listening to the people she meets in her campaign sorties, especially in rural towns.

Poe said the impact of El Niño on the agricultural sector is part of gauging the country's disaster preparedness, which is one of the topics to be tackled in the second debate hosted by TV5 and Philippine Star. The other topics are education, health and corruption.

According to the hosts, the second of the PILIpinas Debates, which will be held in Cebu, will be an hour longer than the first. The three-hour event will give the presidential candidates 120 seconds each to answer questions and 30 seconds to make a rebuttal.

It will follow a panel discussion format in the first half. The five candidates will then draw lots to determine who will ask a question to whom in the second half.

Poe, whose performance in the first debate was lauded by analysts and media observers, reiterated the importance of the candidates being respectful to each other.

"I think decency is also very important. We're preparing for the debate. Dito lang marami na kaming natututunan," she said in a visit to Samboan, Cebu.

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