912Published on January 15, 2020
More people are happy with the Awami League’s governance now, a year after it took office for an unprecedented third term with a landslide in the 2018 general election, a new nationwide opinion poll shows.
The poll, conducted by US-based International Republican Institute or IRI Center for Insights in Survey Research, shows heightened support for the government despite concerns over economic inequality and corruption.
Approval of the government’s job performance rose 19 points since IRI’s May 2018 survey to a high of 83 percent.
More Bangladeshis now have a positive view of security, political stability and the country’s economic future, according to the latest survey conducted among 4,993 respondents aged 18 and older between Aug 1 and Sept 16 last year.
Among the respondents, 76 percent believe that things in Bangladesh are heading in the right direction in general under the Awami League’s rule. The rate was found 62 percent in the previous survey.
On the other hand, satisfaction over the opposition parties’ job performance has dropped to 36 percent from 48 percent.
However, 76 percent of respondents also believe that economic inequality is increasing, and 31 percent say that corruption has negatively impacted their lives.
Further amplifying concerns over corruption, a plurality of respondents, 19 percent, say that this is the single most important problem facing Bangladesh today.
“Successes in economic development—particularly improvements in infrastructure — have translated into strong public support for the government,” Johanna Kao, IRI regional director for Asia, said in a statement on the publication of the report on Jan 8.
“However, if the government is to secure sustained support, it must take steps to respond to citizen concerns over corruption and economic issues,” she added.
While the public has mostly demonstrated support for government performance, polling reflects anxiety over the government’s management of topline issues such as corruption, inflation and jobs.
The survey also reflects concerns over the government’s response to the Rohingya refugee crisis, as just 37 percent approve of the government’s performance on the issue.