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Najib's approval rating up to 69pc
09-Mar-2012, The Malaysian Insider
By Shannon Teoh

KUALA LUMPUR, March 9 — Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s approval rating has surged by 10 percentage points to 69 per cent on the back of an improving economy and the cash handout of RM500 to low-income earners under the Bantuan Rakyat 1 Malaysia (BR1M), according to a recent poll.

Pollsters Merdeka Center found that the prime minister’s support was highest among households earning less than RM1,500 a month at 78 per cent with four-fifths of Indians and 74 per cent of Malays also giving Najib the thumbs up.

But less than half of the 1,022 voters polled in peninsular Malaysia last month said “they were happy with the government.”

Najib’s (picture) ruling Barisan Nasional (BN) is more popular with older voters, receiving 54 per cent support from those aged above 60 but only 39 per cent backing from those younger than 30, according to the survey.

“The findings also show that as many of one-third of respondents who were inclined towards Pakatan Rakyat (PR), reported satisfaction with the prime minister — indicating that such expression of approval may not all translate into votes for the ruling coalition,” Merdeka Center said.

The survey also found those in households earning between RM1,500 to RM3,000 per month, who also receive the BR1M handout, were mostly supportive of the PM and his government.

But approval for the incumbents decreased with earning power, as only 29 per cent of voters earning above RM5,000 said they were happy with Putrajaya.

Najib and his coalition remain least popular among Chinese of whom only 56 per cent are satisfied with the prime minister and just 17 per cent are happy with the federal government.

The Umno president’s popularity had been on a steady decline since hitting a peak of 72 per cent in May 2010, dropping to 69 per cent in November the same year before sliding to 59 per cent in August 2011.

Malaysia’s economy had recovered from a slight contraction in 2009 to record a 7.2 per cent expansion in 2010 before growth slowed again last year.


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