Presidential candidates in the Philippines have held a nationally televised debate focusing on poverty.
The first TV debate of this kind in recent years was held on Sunday at a university on the island of Mindanao.
Participating candidates explained how their policies would help the poor. A quarter of the Philippine population remains in poverty despite the country’s economic growth.
In May, voters will elect a successor to President Benigno Aquino. Four main contenders are vying for the office.
Former interior secretary Manuel Roxas is backed by Aquino. Current Vice President Jejomar Binay once belonged to an opposition party. Senator Grace Poe is an independent. And Rodrigo Duterte is the Mayor of Mindanao, the largest city in the south.
All candidates are in close races and their rankings in public polls change almost every month.
Some people watched the debate on a large screen in a gymnasium on the university campus. One 26-year-old voter told NHK that he hopes the next president will concentrate on ways to reduce poverty and corruption.