A survey by Africa’s research powerhouse, Afrobarometer, has cast darkness on Malawi President Lazarus Chakwera. In the survey conducted earlier this year, Chakwera’s approval ratings have taken a tank with only 9% of Malawians indicating that they strongly approve of Chakwera’s leadership.
According to the survey results published on 30 August 2022, 51.7% of Malawians strongly disapprove of Chakwera. The majority of those who disapprove live in the rural areas.
The survey results have further indicated that 14.9 % of people disapprove of Chakwera’s leadership. This puts the total percentage of people disapproving of Chakwera at 66.6%.
On his side, Chakwera has the approval of at least 29.1% of Malawians as there is 19.2% share of Malawians that approved of his leadership.
A majority of Malawians surveyed revealed that they are mostly concerned with the economy. They also disclosed that the country is heading in a worse direction. They also expressed to have lost trust in the two main parties within the Tonse Alliance: the Malawi Congress Party (MCP) and UTM that is led by Vice President Saulos Chilima.
A research analyst speaking with Malawi24 said that while the survey was reflective of Chakwera’s dip in popularity, the results could have been worse had the survey been conducted around this time.
“Chakwera scored a 29% because it was earlier this year. At this point, I doubt if he can get that much. The devaluation has dented him. The electricity situation has made it worse,” said the expert.
Malawi devalued its currency by 25% in July this year. This was said that it would be instrumental in easing the forex shortages that have plagued the nation. However, it only led to an increase in prices of basic goods. The electricity situation has also gotten worse with the country experiencing national blackouts for 3 consecutive days in August this year. Power keeps rationed with areas getting only 8 hours of power in a day.
Lazarus Chakwera came to power after a re-run election in 2020 on the promises of ending corruption, nepotism as well as energising the economy. However, 2 years into his rule, Malawians have started losing hope in him.
Chakwera has gone back on his promises with the excuse that the Russia-Ukraine war has affected his plans.