TEMPO.CO, Jakarta – The Political Indicator survey institute held an approval rating survey or level of satisfaction with President Joko Widodo or Jokowi after raising subsidized fuel prices on September 3. The indicator assesses that Jokowi is smart in taking unpopular policies but his satisfaction level has fallen to 10 percent.
“The president is smart to carry out unpopular policies when the approval rating is high,” said the Executive Director of Political Indicators Burhanuddin Muhtadi in a virtual presentation of the survey results, Sunday, September 18, 2022.
From survey level of satisfaction with Jokowi fell from 72.3 percent on August 22, 2022 to 63.6 percent on September 22. “The effect on the presidential approval rating is quite good, approximately 10 percent compared to August before the fuel price hike, this is an interesting point,” he said.
Burhanuddin assessed that Jokowi was smart because the policy was taken when his satisfaction level was at its highest since the last few months. At the end of May, the level of satisfaction with Jokowi was only at the level of 61.8 percent, increasing to position 72.3 or returning to the position before the Covid-19 pandemic.
If the satisfaction level is below 50 percent, it’s an alarm
So that when Jokowi decided to increase fuel prices, which did not please the public, the level of public satisfaction with Jokowi did not fall below the psychological limit of 50 percent. “If it gets below 50 percent, that’s an alarm,” said Burhanuddin.
Thus, conditions will be different when Jokowi raises fuel prices more quickly, namely in early May 2022. Because at that time, the level of satisfaction with Jokowi was dropping to the position of 58.1 percent. If the fuel price was raised at that time, said Burhanuddin, the satisfaction level could drop to below 50 percent.
On the other hand, the increase in fuel prices which is still far before the 2024 Simultaneous Elections is also considered not to have a major political impact. It’s a different story if fuel prices go up in 2023, a year before the election. “Maybe political parties don’t want to be associated with being part of the government, if (fuel prices go up) near the election,” he said.
Now the price of subsidized fuel has gone up, both Pertalite and diesel. “Whether Jokowi is able to raise his approval rating again, especially after getting the freedom to transfer fuel subsidies, that’s what we are waiting for. But if the downward trend (satisfaction level) continues, this will be a problem,” said Burhanuddin.
Survey The indicator involves 1,215 respondents with margin of error 2.9 percent and a 95 percent confidence level. Respondent interviews were conducted by telephone with the assumption that: simple random sampling.