Bloomberg News

South African President’s Approval Rating Slips, Survey Shows

October 03, 2011

Oct. 3 (Bloomberg) -- South African President Jacob Zuma’s approval rating slipped after clashes with the leadership of the ruling party’s youth wing, which is calling for the seizure of mines and banks, a survey released today showed.

Of 2,000 adults canvassed by Johannesburg-based research company TNS between Aug. 25 and Sept. 12, just 45 percent said Zuma was doing a good job, down from 48 percent in March. Forty- one percent of respondents disapproved of Zuma’s performance, up from 38 percent. The survey, conducted in the seven main cities, had a margin of error of less than 2.5 percent, TNS said.

The African National Congress Youth League, led by Julius Malema, has threatened to oust party leaders who fail to back its nationalization call. Last month, the ANC instituted disciplinary action against Malema and four other league officials, accusing them of sowing divisions within party ranks. Malema was getting out of control and needed to be reined in, Zuma said an address in Johannesburg today.

“This is a very public disagreement between two very high- profile leaders,” Neill Higgs, a TNS analyst, said by telephone. “It’s not helping either of them.”

Zuma, who has been in power since May 2009, has said he is available to serve a second term as ANC president when it holds leadership elections in December 2012.

--Editors: Jennifer M. Freedman, Ben Holland

To contact the reporter on this story: Mike Cohen in Cape Town at mcohen21@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Andrew J. Barden at barden@bloomberg.net


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