A majority of Zimbabweans view their personal living conditions as “fairly bad” or “very bad”, according to the latest Afrobarometer survey in Zimbabwe. Similarly, the proportion of citizens who view the country’s economic conditions as “bad” or “very bad” has also increased between the period 2009 and 2014. However, despite this pessimism regarding the state of the economy and citizens’ personal living conditions, a majority (57%) approved of the president’s performance.
After going through a tough socioeconomic period between 2002 to 2008, the economy of Zimbabwe began to recover around end of 2008. This followed the political settlement in September 2008 resulting in a coalition government of national unity (GNU) and the adoption of a multi-currency regime. Between 2009 and 2011, Zimbabwe's GDP growth averaged 7.3 percent, making it one of the world's fastest growing economies at the time. However, when the coalition government`s tenure lapsed in July 2013 and was replaced by ZANU-PF party, the honeymoon period came to an end.
Currently, the country suffers from high unemployment levels, high poverty levels and high levels of corruption2. The government also faces a dire situation as it struggles to pay salaries for its civil servant. The latest Afrobarometer survey in Zimbabwe also shows that four in 10 (42%) Zimbabweans expected the country’s economic situation to deteriorate in 2015. However, despite this negative assessment regarding economic conditions, close to six in 10 Zimbabweans, (57%), believe their President had performed well in the past twelve months.