The recent publications of Straconsult for Afrobarometer made some surprising revelations and gave some food for thought. The survey reveals that Mauritians are showing a decline in trust in the main public institution as well as leaders.
Afrobarometer is a pan-African, non-partisan research network that conducts public attitude surveys on democracy, governance, economic conditions, and related issues in African countries.
It can be seen that political bodies and leaders have earned the minimum trust. Only 27% of the respondents trust the Prime Minister and the National Assembly. Around 23% of them trust the opposition. Moreover, less than 45% of the respondents trust the Electoral Commission and a drop from 67% in 2014 has been observed.
Institution that has earned a higher level (above 50%) of trust includes Public hospitals, Special Mobile Force, religious leaders, courts of law and police.
Democracy: Decreasing trust
Along with decreasing trust in the public institutions, Mauritians have also shown decreasing trust in democracy. According to the survey, two-thirds of Mauritians see their country as either “a full democracy” (23%) or “a democracy with minor problems” (45%), while about three in 10 say it is “a democracy with major problems” (24%) or “not a democracy” at all (4%).
Additionally, only half of the Mauritians (51%) state that they are fairly satisfied with the way democracy is working in their country. However, 31% of the respondents said they are not very satisfied and 14% are not at all satisfied with their democracy’s functioning.
Concerning political freedom, it can be seen that most of the respondents are of the view that their political rights are constrained. Around 71% of the respondents state that people often or always have to be careful when they refer to politics.
Likewise, the same percentage reveals that people are always careful about which political organizations they join and how they vote (73%). The younger generations are more cautious when joining political organizations.
Leader’s performance on decline
On the rating of the leader’s performance, it can be seen that President Gurib-Fakim receives the highest rating followed by Prime Minister Pravind Jugnauth. If we see the age group and the location of the respondents, it can be observed that approvals are higher in rural than in urban areas, and tend to increase with age.