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Updated: African leaders on Facebook (February 2012)

February 28, 2012  »  StatisticsOne Comment

This post is an update of October 2011’s list of African leaders with a Facebook presence. The numbers and a couple of links have been adjusted. Stats from July 2010, December 2010, March 2011, and June 2011 are still available.

As always, the challenge is determining what share of fans of these pages are diasporans. A solid number of nations – most notably Liberia, Senegal, and Gabon – have seen extraordinary Facebook fan page growth in the past 4 months. Pages for leaders in these nations have shown 144%, 110%, and 92% growth rates, respectively, in the number of fans. Abdoulaye Wade’s fans have grown tremendously in advance of this month’s presidential elections. Cameroon’s Paul Biya witnessed similar interest on his Facebook page last year during the election season (his page has grown by 18% since). Other updates for February 2012 include:

  • Burkina Faso: Blaise Comparoré has a very official-looking page, even if it may not be official.
  • Rwanda: The widely-popular unofficial page for Rwanda’s Paul Kagame is gone – it boasted nearly 20,000 fans. Perhaps this was a move by leadership to reduce confusion?
  • Zambia: We found the official page for Zambia’s Rupiah Banda.
  • Gabon: Ali Bongo’s page continues to grow by huge margins after becoming official less than a year ago.
  • Egypt: Added community page for Mohamed Hussein Tantawi, although there is limited social interest around him.
  • Madagascar: Added community page for Andry Rajoelina.
  • DRC: The “official page” for Joseph Kabila, with previously 4,000 fans, has been removed. A profile with that many still exists however.
  • Chad: One of the two public profiles for Idriss Deby has been removed.

Growth trends & countries of interest:

  • Median fan growth rate: 10% over 4.5 months (was 15% for 4 months from June-October 2011 and 23% for 3 months from March-June 2011)
  • Given a consistent page, only the leaders of DRC and Seychelles lost fans over the time period.
  • Fan count growth of leader pages with greater than 10,000 fans has slowed substantially since last October. Growth is positive, but is only in the 5-10% range: Algeria 14% (was 17%), Ghana 8% (was 10%), Kenya 4% (was 5%), Morocco 2% (was 5%), Nigeria 7% (was 13%), Tanzania 9% (was 8%), Zimbabwe 3% (was 3%).
  • Less than 5% growth in Benin, Guinea, Mauritania, Somalia. Benin, and Guinea also were in this range last year.
  • The page for Libya’s Col. Gaddafi grew by another 23%
  • Mauritania still only has 4 fans of the community page for Ba Mamadou Mbaré. Guinea-Bissau is not much better with 14 fans for Malam Bacai Sanha.
  • Solid (40%) growth in Angola, Ethiopia, Malawi, Mali.
  • Ethiopia’s fan base has doubled from 700 to 1,400 since June 2011 suggesting either a growing interest in politics by diasporans or a domestic adoption of Facebook.
  • In order of sheer fan base there is no change in order: Nigeria (699k), Kenya (98k), Morocco (86k), Zimbabwe (67k), Tanzania (35k)

The list as of February 25, 2012:

CountryPresident (or other title)Facebook Page Type (hyperlinked)# of Likes% Change since October 2011 (4.5 months)
AlgeriaAbdelaziz BouteflikaOfficial Page2307114%
AngolaJose Dos SantosCommunity Page306740%
BeninThomas Yayi BoniOfficial Page65774%
BotswanaSeretse Khama Ian KhamaUnofficial Page823725%
Burkina FasoBlaise CompaoréUnofficial Page101678%
BurundiPierre NkurunzizaCommunity Page35513%
CameroonBiya PaulOfficial Page1139318%
Cape VerdePedro PiresCommunity Page95810%
Central African RepublicFrancois Bozize YangouvondaPersonal Profile?1917%
ChadLt Gen. Idriss DebyPublic Profile 261216%
ComorosAhmed Abdallah SambiCommunity Page829%
Congo, Republic ofDenis Sassou-NguessoOfficial Page | Private Profile7254 / 124410% / -2%
Congo, Democratic Republic ofJoseph KabilaPrivate Profile4003-4%
Cote d'IvoireAlassane OuattaraUnofficial Page161329%
DjiboutiIsmail Omar GuellehUnofficial Page?46267%
EgyptMohamed Hussein TantawiCommunity Page286n/a
Equatorial GuineaBrig. Gen. (ret) Teodoro Obiang Nguema MbasogoCommunity Page9827%
EritreaIsaias AfeworkiUnofficial Page76585%
EthiopiaMeles Zenawi (PM)Community Page143538%
GabonAli Bongo OndimbaOfficial Page1302392%
The GambiaYahya JammehUnofficial Page62417%
GhanaJohn Evans Atta-MillsUnofficial Page217828%
GuineaSékouba KonatéUnofficial Page37022%
Guinea-BissauMalam Bacai SanhaCommunity Page1427%
KenyaMwai KibakiUnofficial Page977654%
LesothoKing Letsie III (King)Unofficial Page53036%
LiberiaEllen Sirleaf JohnsonCommunity Page2698144%
LibyaCol. Mu'ammar al-QadhafiUnofficial Page919927%
MadagascarAndry RajoelinaCommunity Page484n/a
MalawiBingu wa MutharikaCommunity Page26937%
MaliAmadou Toumani ToureUnofficial Page32246%
MauritaniaBa Mamadou MbaréCommunity Page40%
MauritiusSir Anerood JugnauthUnofficial Page8608%
MoroccoKing Mohamed VI (King)Unofficial Page863532%
MozambiqueArmando Emilio GuebuzaOfficial Page?404415%
NamibiaHifikepunye PohambaCommunity Page71420%
NigerSalou Djibo (Head of Military Junta)Unofficial Page13805%
NigeriaDr. Goodluck JonathanOfficial Page6990737%
RwandaPaul KagameCommunity Page2184n/a
Sao Tome & PrincipeFradique De MenezesCommunity Page1417%
SenegalAbdoulaye WadeUnofficial Page | Community Page1882 / 1263107% / 115%
SeychellesJames MichelPublic Profile4750-2%
Sierra LeoneErnest Bai KoromaCommunity Page144813%
SomaliaSharif AhmedUnofficial Page35944%
South AfricaJacob Gedleyihlekisa ZumaCommunity Page541137%
South SudanSalva Kiir MayarditCommunity Page91021%
SudanOmar Hassan al-BashirCommunity Page15814%
SwazilandKing Msati III (King)Community Page7615%
TanzaniaJakaya KikweteOfficial Page347279%
TogoFaure Gnassingbe"Fan Club"46846%
TunisiaFouad MebazaaUnofficial Page4618%
UgandaLt. Gen. Yoweri Kaguta MuseveniUnofficial Page / Profile7085 / 133210% / -1%
ZambiaRupiah BandaOfficial Page?3332n/a
ZimbabweRobert Gabriel MugabeCommunity Page796248%
ZimbabweMorgan Tsvangirai (PM)Official Page671903%

The above table lists all top African heads of state (usually President) and provides a link to the one or two most popular Facebook pages, groups, or profiles for a given leader. The final column shows how many users are interested in the particular leader. Loose definitions of the page-types:

  • Official page: A page run by the actual leader.
  • Public profile: A presidential account with a public wall and information about the leader.
  • Private profile: An seemingly real account without a public wall or information about the leader.
  • Unofficial page: A user-created page that serves as the leader.
  • Group: A user-created group dedicated to a leader.
  • Community page: A placeholder courtesy of Wikipedia for cases when no user-generated page exists.