Only 34 per cent of the public and 41 per cent of opinion leaders believe that the situation in Jordan is going in the right direction, a poll revealed on Wednesday.
The poll, conducted by the University of Jordan’s Centre for Strategic Studies (CSS), surveyed 1,823 Jordanian women and men over the age of 18. It also surveyed a smaller group of 700 “opinion leaders”, including academics, intellectuals, media and business leaders and politicians.
The latest figures, which evaluated the performance of Prime Minister Omar Razzaz and his government in the past 100 days, revealed an increase in the approval of the government’s performance of around 4 per cent in the public sample and 7 per cent among “opinion leaders”, in comparison with the Cabinet’s first 100 days in office.
However, the results show a remarkable drop in confidence in the government since its inception, when the SSC’s poll results showed that over 55 per cent of Jordanians and 63 per cent of opinion leaders believed that the situation in Jordan is going in the right direction, and some 83 per cent of all those surveyed believed that Razzaz’s government would perform better than its predecessor.
CSS Director Musa Shteiwi said several factors contributed to the decline in the government’s popularity since it first took office in June of last year.
The drop in the government’s popularity, according to Shteiwi, “is attributed to the fact that people had high expectations from Razzaz and his government, but felt that it did not meet their demands”.
“When Razzaz was appointed, people believed that he will be their saviour... but their expectations dropped because Razzaz and his government did not deliver that much, which contributed in the drop in approval ratings,” Shteiwi told The Jordan Times.
Unemployment and mounting prices were some of the most pressing issues that needed to be tackled according to 23 per cent of surveyed Jordanians, followed by corruption and wasta (using personal connections to obtain favours for friends and relatives) with 21 per cent.
Meanwhile, 24 per cent of opinion leaders said the lack of reform, economic hardships and government decisions that are not in favour of its citizens are the most important issues that need to be addressed.
Of those surveyed, 41 per cent believed that the government is capable of upholding its responsibilities, while 46 per cent of the opinion leaders believed the same.
As for the premier, 49 per cent of the popular sample said Razzaz is up for the responsibilities entrusted in him, while the rate was 55 per cent among opinion leaders.
Turning to the economic situation in the country, the poll indicated that 79 per cent of the grassroots sample and 75 per cent of opinion leaders believe that the Jordanian economy is going in the wrong direction.
Fifty-five per cent of opinion leaders and 42 per cent of the public were optimistic that the economic situation in Jordan would improve in the coming two years.
Meanwhile, 52 per cent of those surveyed and 35 per cent of opinion leaders said the government was able to manage the Dead Sea tragedy last October, which claimed the lives of over 20 people, mostly schoolchildren.
However, 69 per cent of the public and 68 of the opinion leaders polled believe that the resignation of two ministers following the incident was “unnecessary”, while 66 per cent of the surveyed and 81 of opinion leaders believe that the resigned ministers were not responsible for the disaster.
On the political level, 82 per cent of the popular sample and 92 per cent of opinion leaders support the appointment of a Syrian ambassador to Jordan, while 81 per cent of the surveyed and 90 per cent of opinion leaders support the appointment of a Jordanian ambassador to Syria.
This article has been adapted from its original source.
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