Study: Philippines considered among world’s safest countries in 2019

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Nov 01 2020 05:59 AM

Students gather to protest against an anti-terrorism bill during the “Grand Mañanita” protest at University of the Philippines on June 12, 2020. Jonathan Cellona, ABS-CBN News/File

MANILA — The Philippines is among the top 50 safest countries in the world in 2019, according to a global law and order index.

The country had an index of 84, just below the United States (85) in the rankings, and on the same level as Australia (84), and New Zealand (84) in terms of how effective law and order is maintained, the 2020 Gallup Global Law and Order report showed.

The study said the higher a country’s score, the higher the proportion of its population reported feeling safe. It measured the residents’ perception of security and their personal experiences with crime and law enforcement in their respective countries.

The US-based polling firm said it conducted face-to-face interviews with 2,090 Filipinos, aged 15 and older, between Oct. 8 and 24, 2019. The study for the country had a 2.6 margin of error.

“Some areas were excluded from the sampling frame, due to security concerns — such as barangays considered as war zones in Marawi — and areas that are remote or inaccessible. The excluded population from these areas represent less than 1 percent of the population,” Gallup said.

Among the questions asked from the participants globally were:

  • In the city or area where you live, do you have confidence in the local police force? 
  • Do you feel safe walking alone at night in the city or area where you live? 
  • Within the last 12 months, have you had money or property stolen from you or another household member? 
  • Within the past 12 months, have you been assaulted or mugged?

Singapore and Turkmenistan finished with the highest law and order index at 97, followed by China, which had an index of 93. Kuwait and Iceland followed with an index of 93.

Afghanistan was considered the least safe, according to the study, with an index of 43. South Africa (57), Liberia (54), Venezuela (54), and Gabon (52) were the bottom five countries.

DILG welcomes survey's results 

The Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) on Saturday hailed the study, saying the report proved that “the government is winning the war against criminality and drugs.”

“The government is even more committed to maintaining its current efforts against crime and drugs following the Philippines' excellent standing in a prestigious worldwide survey on people's views on their security,” DILG said in a statement.

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Interior Secretary Eduardo Año said the results were “reassuring” and that Filipinos appreciated what the government has been doing to prevent criminality.

In September, the DILG said crime volume in the country decreased by 47 percent during the first 6 months that the country was placed under lockdown due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Año also said robberies went down by 61 percent, while vehicle and motorcycle theft went down by 66 percent and 61 percent, respectively. Murder cases also went down by 22 percent.