Friday, April 2, 2010

Najib approval rating climbs to 68pc

The Malaysian Insider, 2 April 2010

Datuk Seri Najib Razak is in a stronger position today than he was 12 months ago, when he was appointed Malaysia’s sixth prime minister, a recent survey has shown.

Then, his approval rating was a dismal 44 per cent; the economy was slipping into unforgiving negative territory, and he seemed vulnerable as he was pelted by bad news everywhere he turned.

Today, the proportion of Malaysians satisfied with his performance as the PM stands at 68 per cent, the highest it has been since the Merdeka Center for Opinion Research began tracking his approval ratings in April 2009, the month he replaced Tun Abdullah Ahmad Badawi in Putrajaya.

Merdeka Center polled 883 registered voters in West Malaysia between March 11 and March 27, and the questions covered the direction of the country, public satisfaction with the prime minister, and perception of some of his key initiatives.

A summary of the survey was obtained by The Malaysian Insider.

The pollster noted that, since June 2009, satisfaction levels with Najib’s performance as premier has hovered in the 65 per cent range, plummeting sharply once to 56 per cent in September last year, in the wake of the cow head protest by mainly Umno members against the construction of a Hindu temple in Shah Alam and the death of DAP aide, Teoh Beng Hock, while in the custody of the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC).

In the latest survey, 68 per cent of the respondents said that they were satisfied with the prime minister’s performance. This upward trend occurred despite issues that erupted recently, such as the “Allah” controversy and subsequent attacks on places of worship.

Najib’s improved numbers is also the result of a recuperating economy, along with an opposition which has been troubled by defections and infighting.

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