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Monday, 13 November 2023 12:45

Mbeki surpasses Ramaphosa as most favored leader | Survey.

By Lehlohonolo Lehana.

Former president Thabo Mbeki enjoys favourable popularity in the public and among ANC members, with a score surpassing President Cyril Ramaphosa.

A new survey by the Social Research Foundation revealed Mbeki as the most favoured political leader in the country.  

Mbeki scored 57.5%, while Ramaphosa scored 44.4% favourability.  

The survey measured the opinions of 1 412 people.  

The former president's popularity score increased by just over 4% compared to March, where he scored 53%.    

Mbeki's popularity comes in spite of him being the ANC's most prominent critic in recent years. 

He scored moderately among all race groups surveyed by the company, with black people responding at 60%, whites 45%, coloured 53%, and Indians 54%.  

His popularity in the ANC remains high, with party supporters scoring him 70%, DA supporters giving him 45% and EFF supporters 53%. 

Political analyst Goodenough Mashego says, "I think Thabo Mbeki being popular at the level of 57.5% speaks to the lack of decisiveness on the part of Cyril Ramaphosa because since he came into power, there has not really been any decisiveness on anything, on unemployment, on the ballooning debt, the July unrest happened under his tenor and Phala Phala is something that is his to handle," said Mashego.  

"I think you can't pin a scandal on Thabo Mbeki except his denialism (on HIV/AIDS), but you cannot say that he was indecisive because people like Tony Yengeni were even sentenced to jail under his leadership, Mbulelo Goniwe was expelled as a member of the ANC."

Besides the survey, recent reports have spotlighted significant developments in the country. The Democratic Alliance's call for an inquiry into allegations of wasteful expenditure on the Inkwazi Presidential Jet and the Gauteng government's scrutiny over an abandoned road project underscore the importance of transparent governance. Both incidents raise critical questions on the use of public funds and reinforce the significance of accountable leadership.

The SRF survey also gauged other political leaders. 

Former DA party leader Helen Zille remains a preferred political figure compared to current leader John Steenhuisen

Zille scored 27.5% overall in favourability, 19% among black people, 49% from coloureds, 45% from Indians and 69% from whites. 

Steenhuisen meanwhile scored 18.5% overall, 8% among black people, 48% with coloureds and 59% among whites. 

Among DA supporters, Steenhuisen, who was elected for a second term this year, scored 47% among party supporters, 8% among ANC supporters and 2% among EFF supporters. 

EFF leader Julius Malema scored 27% in the favourability score, with 32% among black people, 15% with coloureds, 15% with Indians and 5% with whites. 

Malema is more popular among EFF supporters scoring 81%, while scoring 22% among ANC supporters and 21% with DA supporters.