Ghana’s government performed poorly on the economic management scorecard of most citizens, according to the findings of a new Afrobarometer survey.
The latest Afrobarometer findings reveal that Ghanaians want the government to give top priority to managing the economy – a shift in policy priorities from 2005, 2008, and 2012 Afrobarometer surveys, in which unemployment was the leading policy priority of most Ghanaians.
The negative evaluations of government economic performance also found expression in a finding that a majority of Ghanaians believe the country is moving in the “wrong direction.” These findings are significant in light of recent public discussions on the economy’s unstable trajectory, with months of exchange-rate depreciation and rising inflation.
Large majorities of Ghanaians gave ratings of “fairly bad” or “very bad” to government’s performance in managing key macro-economic indicators such as the economy (72%), improving living standards of the poor (76%), creating jobs (76%), keeping prices down (81%), and narrowing gaps between rich and poor (76%).
Ghanaians consider economic management (18%) as the most important problem that they want government to address. This is followed by education and electricity (12% each) and health.
Two-thirds (66%) of Ghanaians say the government is managing their topmost priority (i.e. the first most important problem) “fairly badly” or “very badly”.
An overwhelming majority of Ghanaians (82%) say the country is moving in the “wrong direction,” compared to 57% who thought so in 2012.
Afrobarometer is an African-led, non-partisan research network that conducts public attitude surveys on democracy, governance, economic conditions, and related issues across more than 30 countries in Africa. Five rounds of surveys were conducted between 1999 and 2013, and Round 6 surveys are currently under way (2014-2015). Afrobarometer conducts face-to-face interviews in the language of the respondent’s choice with nationally representative samples of between 1,200 and 2,400 respondents.
The Afrobarometer Project Team at the Ghana Center for Democratic Development (CDDGhana) interviewed 2,400 adult Ghanaians from May 24 to June 10, 2014. A sample of this size yields results with a margin of error of ±2% at the 95% confidence level. Previous surveys have been conducted in Ghana in 1999, 2002, 2005, 2008 and 2012. For more information, please visit www.afrobarometer.org.