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News release

Angolans trust religious and traditional leaders more than elected leaders, Afrobarometer survey shows

30 Nov 2022 Angola
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News release
Key findings
  • A majority (53%) of Angolans say they trust religious leaders “somewhat” or “a lot.” No other leaders or institutions the survey asked about enjoy the trust of a majority of citizens. Only 29% express trust in the president of the Republic, an 8-percentage- point drop from 37% in 2019, and even fewer (21%) say they trust the National Electoral Commission, down from 27% in 2019 (Figure 1).
  • Between 2019 and 2022, trust in religious leaders rose dramatically in rural areas (from 56% to 73%) and in Huila province (from 50% to 66%) (Figure 2). Trust in religious leaders declined in urban areas (from 51% to 43%), especially in Luanda province, the capital (from 47% to 29%).
  • Similarly, traditional leaders enjoy relatively high – and increasing – levels of trust in rural areas (71%) and Huila (59%), while trust in traditional leaders is fairly low – and declining – in Luanda (19%) and urban areas in general (31%) (Figure 3).
  • In Luanda, only 15% of respondents say they trust the president of the Republic “somewhat” or “a lot,” down 13 percentage points from 2019 (28%). In Huila, trust has increased to 42%, 12 points more than in 2019 (30%) (Figure 4).

Angolans trust religious and traditional leaders more than elected leaders, according to the latest Afrobarometer survey.

In general, Angolans express little trust in leaders and institutions, including the president of the Republic, the National Assembly, and the bodies that played key roles in the general elections in August – the ruling and opposition parties and the National Electoral Commission. In most cases, trust levels have declined since the previous survey in 2019.

In the period following the electoral campaign, which was sometimes marked by a tense atmosphere among the main political actors, trusted religious and traditional leaders can play a crucial role in calming tempers and fostering a climate of reciprocal political tolerance.