Peru Poll: Humala's Approval Rating Dragged Down on Mining Protests
06/15/2012| 11:01am US/Eastern
LIMA--President Ollanta Humala's approval rating has slipped to 43% in June from 55% in the previous month, a sign that social conflicts in the mining sector have started to affect the president's popularity, a new national poll shows.
The survey from pollster Datum, released Friday, showed a 49% disapproval rating for Mr. Humala, while 8% was undecided or didn't comment. The poll is the first to show disapproval of the president higher than his approval rating since he took office last July.
The release of the poll follows protests held against Xstrata PLC's (>> Xstrata PLC) Tintaya copper mine, where two people were killed, and ongoing demonstrations against Newmont Mining's (>> Newmont Mining Corporation) Minas Conga copper and gold project.
Minas Conga, which is Peru's biggest private sector investment project, has been on hold since late last year. While some local politicians and residents continue to oppose the project, the poll said that national support for Minas Conga has increased. Datum said that 60% of respondents support the project, while 29% say it should not be developed.
Humala, a former military officer, took office July 28 last year for a five-year term.
The Datum poll of 1,216 persons was taken June 8-11 and has a margin of error of 2.9 percentage points. The poll was published in newspaper Gestion.
Write to Ryan Dube at firstname.lastname@example.org