Latest public opinion polls show that Prime Minister Najib Razak’s reputation has taken another bashing after several embarrassing public relations failures over the Chinese New Year period, dropping further to a mere 61% overall score.
According to independent pollster Merdeka Centre, Najib’s approval rating was 63% in December last year and has been on a steady decline since the December 2011 high score of 71%.
Merdeka Centre also reported that Najib’s Malay support declined four per cent from 77% to 73%, while his approval among Indians dipped from 76% to 75%. Meanwhile Chinese support for the PM remained constant at a dismal 34%.
Voters have turned against Barisan Nasional
Weeks ahead of polls, the ruling coalition’s popularity has been severely dented, with 45% of respondents saying that they were happy with Barisan Nasional, while 44% expressed feelings of anger or dissatisfaction with BN.
Respondents were posed the question “Some people say they are happy with Barisan Nasional, while others are dissatisfied and others say they are angry? Which one best describes how you feel?”
35% of the respondents said they were dissatisfied with BN, 9% were angry with BN. The poll showed that 68% of Chinese were dissatisfied or angry, a marked increase from 57% during December 2012.
Notably, a whopping 43% of Indians said they were dissatisfied or angry, compared to 25% who answered the same question in December 2012. This is a glaring 18% increase of unhappiness among the Indian community.
Malay dissatisfaction and anger also rose to 32% from 27% in December.
86% of Malaysians oppose Project IC
Participants were asked questions revolving around four issues, namely the “Allah” controversy, race rhetoric, Project IC, and non-communal political representation.
The survey found that 63% of non-Muslims and 52% of Muslims disagreed with Perkasa President Ibrahim Ali’s call to seize and burn copies of the bible containing the word “Allah”.
On racial sentiments, 66% of non-Muslims and 42% of Muslims felt that the government had not done enough to curb racist statements and sentiments lately.
Across the board, Project IC received the strongest reaction from respondents, with 86% opposing the granting of citizenship for Indonesian and Filipino Muslims so that they can live and vote in Sabah.
The response was overwhelming from all categories of respondents, regardless of race, age, location, internet accessibility and political affiliation.
The survey was carried out between 23 January and 6 February 2013, following the Himpunan Kebangkitan Rakyat (HKR) rally on 12 January, media coverage on the Royal Commission of Inquiry on Sabah, revelations by carpet seller Deepak Jaikishan and former police chief Musa Hassan, and the Allah controversy. –The Rocket