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Sowetan Reporter

Sowetan Reporter

Most South Africans do not believe that most leaders once they have been elected into power listen to what the voters want.

This is according to a survey conducted by Idasa's Afrobarometer among 12 African states.

Only 23 percent of South Africans interviewed said MPs listened "often" or "always", compared to 64 percent who say they "never" or "only sometimes" listen to their constituents.

The survey shows that only one percent of South Africans interviewed attribute the responsibility to ensure that MPs do their job to voters. In fact, the survey shows that 30 percent believe that parliamentarians must monitor themselves; 29 percent believe that the responsibility lies with the president.

Across the 12 countries, an average of 38 percent said voters were responsible, and the figure was 70 percent in Malawi and 68 percent in Madagascar.

The survey also revealed that South Africans were less likely to know their MPs than respondents in any of the other 11 countries.

In general it found that while there was cause for concern about the diminished relationship of accountability between MPs and voters that the proportional representation system engenders, South Africans also find that the degree of contact they have with their elected representatives falls well below their expectations.


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