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Colombia: The Truth behind the Poll Figures
venezuela / colombia | miscellaneous | non-anarchist press Saturday July 16, 2011 06:54 by Justice for Colombia
Colombian media have greeted the latest polls showing President Santos’ approval rating and the country’s economic growth with great fanfare. According to a recent poll, Santos’ approval ratings stand at 75%. Other figures show economic growth in the last trimester hit 5.3%. However, the economic growth figures say nothing about the distribution of that growth, and the approval ratings are open to question.
Opinion polls in Colombia, as elsewhere, are conducted in calls to household telephones. Colombian telecommunications networks mainly cover the larger towns and cities. Just three cities account for half of the country’s phone lines – Bogota, Cali and Medellin. Overall, Colombia has an average telephone line density of 17%, but in many rural areas this drops to less than 10%. Therefore polls are heavily skewed towards the populations of the three main cities. Moreover, since they are conducted by fixed-line telephones, they cannot reach the more than 7 million Colombians who live on less than a dollar a day, and who cannot afford telephone lines.