Buhari’s Honeymoon Is Over As Popularity Slips, According To GAIN Poll

Posted on


image

Key highlights
Buhari government scores low on jobs,
economy, power More Nigerians hold Buhari responsible for the economy
Overall approval for the Buhari government declines Nigerian Senate maintains lowest approval rating of governmental institutions Nigerian Army remains highest rated National Institution Kachikwu rated best performing minister Concerns about abuse of rule of law grows Majority hold negative view of the selection of Ali Modu Sherriff as the PDP Chairman
79% give poor ratings to government’s
handling of Fulani Herdsmen clashes
72% of Nigerians do not support any political parties Buhari government overall approval rating declines

image

We saw the sharpest decline in the month-to-month approval ratings for the president yet in our polls. High approval ratings dropped from 63.4% in January to 32.8% in the February poll.
Overall, a slight majority of Nigerians (50.4%) gave the Buhari administration average (17.6%) or high approval ratings (32.8%). As with previous polls, we provided respondents with a 5 point-scale response to this question. We
maintained our approach of not using a simple forced two-scale measure of approval (Yes or No) to enable a deeper understanding of the nuances that informed respondents’ choices. A
positive approval rating in our terminology refers only to those respondents that reported either an “Excellent” or “Good” rating. A
negative rating comprises of those individuals that reported a “Poor” or “Very Poor” rating. Security, Anti corruption, Power and the Economy are priority areas

image

Respondents were provided with a number of key segments and focus areas for the government and were required to provide a forced three tier ranking (High, Medium, Low) of their perceptions of the importance of each
of the areas. Under the “High” ranking response, security (Boko Haram Crisis) was rated as the most important area of concern and/or interest by 55% of Nigerians, continuing the trend from the
January poll. The top 5 rated areas overall were Security (55%), Anti-Corruption (51%),Power (51%), Economy & Jobs (50%) and
Education (45%). Anticorruption war remains popular, but concerns grow over abuse of rule of law

image

Support for the anti-corruption war dropped from about 76% in the January poll, to just under 45% in this poll. We also saw an increase in the number of Nigerians that are critical of the way the anti-corruption war is being prosecuted. More Nigerians indicated that the anti corruption war targets the president’s political opponents (34.4% in February vs 15.5% in January) and opposition PDP members (33.1% in February vs 16.8% in
January). Those expressing concern about the
potential for abuse of the rule of law in the
prosecution of corruption cases increased from
21.5% in the January poll to 35.3% in February.
It is not clear why this shift in the support for
the anticorruption war has occurred. Future
polls will include questions aimed at better
understanding the basis for this shift.
Anticorruption and Security remain bright spots;
Nigerians score government low on economy,
housing, healthcare, education and power.

image

The government received low ratings from
majority of respondents in six of the nine areas
surveyed. The worst ranked areas were Housing
(74%), Economy & Jobs (73%), Healthcare (62%),
Transportation (62%), Power (59%) and
Education (58%).
Combining “High” and “Medium” ratings, the
three highest ranked areas are Anticorruption
(75%), Security (70%) and Availability of
Petroleum Products (60%).
Majority of Nigerians are against devaluation of
the Naira. A majority of Nigerians (62.6%) indicated
opposition to the devaluation of the Naira.

image

While this position is popular, most economists
have indicated that the Buhari’ government’s
defense of the Naira is not sustainable in the
long run given the lack of sufficient reserves to
offset the dollar deficit that has led to
downward pressures on the value of the Naira.
Majority shift blame on Economy to Buhari
government – reversing earlier trends that laid
responsibility on the Jonathan government

image

For the first time since the Buhari presidency,
more Nigerians held the current government
responsible for the current state of the Nigerian
economy. In the February poll, 35% of
Nigerians indicated that the Buhari government
was “completely to blame” for the state of the
Nigerian economy (versus 14% in the January
poll), compared to 30% who indicated the past
government of Goodluck Jonathan was to blame
(compared to 59% in the January poll). This
seismic shift in responsibility for the economy
to the Buhari administration marks a major
change in attitudes by the Nigerian people.
President Buhari made more economic policy
statements in the month of February than at
any other time in his administration, which
clearly signaled to the Nigerian people that his
government’s policy choices are directly
responsible for their economic realities.
Majority are troubled by the economy,
optimism about the future drops

image

Majority of Nigerians (55.3%) expressed
concerns about the economy – an increase
from the January poll (37.6%). On every metric
measured, Nigerians were generally more
negative about their current and future
economic prospects. Optimism about the
economy dropped from 45.2% in the January
poll to 30.3% in February. Positive feelings
about the future, dropped from 51.1% to
35.8%. The percentage of respondents
indicating that they saw encouraging signs for
jobs and employment dropped from 33.6% to
20.6%. The percentage of respondents
indicating that they saw no signs that anything
was being done by the Buhari government to
create jobs, increased from 18.7% to 36%.
Kachikwu continues to shine in ministerial
performance ratings; Lai maintains second
place

image

Ibe Kachikwu, the Minister of State for
Petroleum retained his position as the highest
rated minister, with 33.3% of respondents
giving him high ratings (very high plus high). Lai
Mohammed was the second rated minister with
22.3% high ratings. Raji Fashola, was rated
third for his work in the power sector (15.2%),
while Adebayo Shittu, the Communications
Minister was ranked a close fourth with 15.1%.
Nigerian Senate maintains lowest approval
rating of major governmental institutions (12%);
Army is the most respected national institution
(49%)

image

Respondents were asked to rate the two (2)
major political parties and ten (10) major
governmental institutions, i.e., the Presidency,
Senate, House of Representatives, Army, Police,
Judiciary, the 3 anti-corruption organs – EFCC,
ICPC and CCB and the Central Bank.
The Nigerian Army was the most highly rated
governmental institution, with 49.4% of
respondents rating it as high or very high. The
EFCC ranked second with 33.7% of respondents
giving it high or very high ratings. The
Presidency ranked third with 32.4% high
approval ratings.
The APC was the highest ranked political party,
with 16.3% high approval ratings compared to
the PDP’s 4.2%.
Majority disapprove of government’s handling
of Fulani Herdsmen attacks

image

The Buhari government continued to receive
high approvals for its handling of the Boko
Haram crisis (66%). As the Shiite – Military
conflict has dragged on, the approval ratings for
the government’s handling of that conflict has
dropped, with 42% now showing support for
the government’s handling of that conflict,
compared to 59% in the January poll. 61% of
respondents disapprove of the government’s
handling of the pro-Biafra agitation. As news of
rampaging attacks by Fulani herdsmen in an
increasing number of communities have
continued to emerge, the government’s
handling of this crisis has come under
increasing scrutiny. Nigerians’ views about the
Buhari government’s handling of the Fulani
herdsmen crisis has dropped to a new low, as
79% of respondents rated the government’s
handling of the Fulani herdsmen attacks as
poor or very poor, compared to 60% in the
January poll.
Disaffection with both major political parties
grows

image

An increasing number of Nigerians continue to
indicate that they do not support any political
party. In the February poll, the number of
independents increased to 71.6%. Those
expressing support for the APC dropped to
19.9% from the January poll value of 31.1%,
while the number of Nigerians expressing
support for the PDP in this poll was 8.6%.
Ali Modu Sherriff’s selection as PDP Chairman
not considered favorable

image

A major development in the January – February
timeframe was the PDP’s controversial selection
of Ali Modu Sheriff as the new party Chairman.
A majority of respondents (88.4%) indicated
that Mr. Sheriff’s selection would not make it
more likely for them to support the PDP. When
we analyzed the impact of Mr. Sheriff’s
selection on respondents who had indicated
that they do not support any political party,
90.72% indicated that his choice as leader of
the PDP did not enhance their view of the
party. Amongst Nigerians who indicated that
they were supporters of the PDP, Mr. Sherriff’s
selection was viewed negatively by 58.62% of
respondents.
Methodology & Disclosure
The survey was administered using electronic
media between February 22nd and 29th, 2016.
A total of 757 complete responses were
received. The survey results have a 4% margin
of error at a 95% confidence level. The
Governance Advancement Initiative for Nigeria
(GAIN) Poll is a public service survey intended
to track the performance of government at all
levels and provide feedback from the public to
their elected officials. GAIN also periodically
publishes policy statements to provide
perspectives on key policy and governance
areas. GAIN surveys are coordinated by Dr.
Malcolm Fabiyi and Dr. Adeleke Otunuga. Any
inquiries regarding the survey should be
directed to claypolconsult@gmail.com .

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s