Zimbabweans’ development agenda remains unchanged since the Afrobarometer survey held in the country in 2014. According to the most recent Afrobarometer survey, a majority of the adult population (53%) considers unemployment as the most important problem that the government needs to address. However, this proportion represents a two percentage point decrease compared to public opinion on the same issue in 2014 (51%).
While people’s top ten priorities list for development has largely remained the same, there is slight increase, from 22% in 2014 to 31% in 2017, in the proportion of people calling for the government to address the economy, infrastructure/roads (29% from 22% in 2014), wages, incomes and salaries (18% from 13% in 2014) and food shortages/famine (20% from 10% in 2014). Thus these problems remain the public’s top five most important problems that need urgent attention.
The results are being released at a time when the current government is still struggling to stimulate the economy amid failed job promises and a devastating rain season that left the country’s road infrastructure in a state of emergency. The release also comes as political parties in Zimbabwe are preparing for their elections manifestos for the upcoming 2018 harmonised elections.