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Mnangagwa wins approval ratings?

by Staff reporter
08 Jun 2019 at 08:06hrs | Views
It was a twar. That is the colloquial term for Twitter "war" as social media users on the microblogging site call it. This time, beginning some 48 hours ago, Zimbabweans (or Twimbos) engaged in a "war" to measure the approval ratings of President Mnangagwa. It started off with Voice of America's Studio 7 conducting a survey asking, "Is President @edmnangagwa taking Zimbabwe in the right direction?" and early voting on Thursday showed a massive approval rating for the President as participants responded in the affirmative.

Apparently miffed by the results, ZimLive - believed to be controlled by fugitive former G40 kingpin and rabid critic of President Mnangagwa, Professor Jonathan Moyo - ran a counter poll designed to outbalance the verdict.

However, the results were no different. As of last night, with 30 661 votes cast on Studio 7, 51 percent said "Yes" while 44 percent said "No" and 5 percent "Not sure."

In the ZimLive poll, Twimbos were even more emphatic at the close of the vote. To the question, "Is President Mnangagwa taking Zimbabwe in the right direction?" 60 percent said "Yes", 37 percent "No" and 3 percent "Not sure".

Twenty-three thousand one hundred and twelve people had voted. Mduduzi Mathuthu, a close confidant of Prof Moyo and editor of ZimLive, was left fuming.

He wrote on his Twitter handle: "This abnormal swing clearly tells us that Zanu-PF has invested in internet trolls and bots (robots) with the sole aim of trying to change the narrative about their failing leader.

"Their only problem is that they peaked too early and their methods are now known."

But Twitter users and experts who watched the twar unfold were not all aggrieved.

"The Zimlive poll has terminated with as much as 60% Zimbabweans confirming that President Mnangagwa is taking the country in the right direction," Tich Mushambadope, a socioeconomic commentator based in Harare told The Herald.

"This is after more 22500 votes which is relatively large population sample. The affirmation by such a high percentage of Zimbabwe is instructive and testament...In more ways than one, the poll results serve as a timely referendum that vehemently rejects the MDC efforts to cast a gloomy portrait of the nation's course.

"This demonstrates the disconnect between the internet users most of whom are part of the working class with the new MDC leadership which has since ceased to represent the working class."

Prince Farai Nyandoro said: "Most people in the Diaspora have been impressed by President Mnangagwa's re-engagement efforts and the efforts are bearing fruits as attested by the historic meeting with European Union at the beginning of this week. With some Zimbabweans casting their votes from beyond the borders, these re-engagement efforts can be attributed as the main reason why those in Diaspora feel that President Mnangagwa is taking the country in the right direction."

Nyandoro noted the significance of the demographics inthe poll. "Given that most of the people that participated in the poll are part of the urban and youthful demographics, an endorsement on President Mnangagwa is an instructive paradigm shift. Losses for the opposition on anti-government platforms spells disaster for the MDC and is a clear rejection of "Kudira jecha" buffoonery. The poll results are reflective that the youthful population is embracing the President's vision and affirms the old timeless adage, 'Vox populi, Vox dei'"

Last night, secretary for Information, Publicity and Broadcasting Services, Mr Nick Mangwana said approval polls "are a normal part of political conversation in a democracy". President Mnangagwa is on record as encouraging young people to engage robustly and constructively on social media platforms.

Source - the herald