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Updated: African leaders on Facebook (July 2012)

July 13, 2012  »  StatisticsNo Comment

This post is an update of February 2012’s list of African leaders with a Facebook presence. The numbers and a couple of links have been adjusted. A comparison of the past two years is forthcoming.

The theme of this update is leadership change: five nations have witnessed new heads of state in 2012. Joyce Banda became President of Malawi following the April death of Bingu wa Mutharika. Mohammed Morsi was elected President of Egypt and Macky Sall was elected President of Senegal. Both leaders have substantial Facebook presences (325k and 28k likes, respectively) after utilizing social media during the elections. More forcibly, Manuel Serifo Nhamadjo is Acting President of Guinea-Bissau and Dioncounda Traoré is Interim President of Mali. Interestingly, President Traoré appears to have an official Facebook page and a brand new website. Basically, a leader who has just experienced an election is sure to have an official Facebook page, and a popular one at that. Pages for new leaders already have more Facebook fans (“likes”) than their predecessors’ ever did.

Also, more leaders than ever – at least 12 and perhaps a few more – have an official Facebook presence this time around.

Growth trends & countries of interest:

  • Median like growth rate has settled and is again 10% over 5 months (was 10% for 4.5 months from October 2011 – February 2012, 15% for 4 months from June-October 2011 and 23% for 3 months from March-June 2011). The median number of likes for a leader is right around 5,000, but ranges greatly from a few to hundreds of thousands.
  • Given a consistent page, only the leader of Burundi lost likes over the time period (a community page).
  • like count growth of leader pages with greater than 20,000 likes has plateaued since last February after declining from the previous October. Growth is positive, but is again only in the 2-10% range.
  • Less than 5% growth in Guinea, Nigeria, Morocco, Seychelles, Zimbabwe. Guinea’s growth rate has remained among the lowest for two years and counting.
  • Solid (30-40%) growth in Cameroon (post-election), Gabon (new official page), Liberia (new page earlier in the year), Mauritius, and South Africa.
  • Growth for Benin accelerated from 4% to 13%.
  • The unofficial page for Rwanda’s Paul Kagame, which was new earlier in the year, gained over 20,000 likes in 5 months. In comparison, a page for Tunisia’s interim president launched at the same time has grown to only 2,400.
  • Senegal’s new president Macky Sall has 27,500 likes – substantially more than the 3,000 or so for former president Abdoulaye Wade.
  • Sudan’s Omar al-Bashir doesn’t have an official page – only a community page – but recent interest in the protests has driven his number of likes up by 55%.
  • Swaziland’s King Mswati III saw a huge increase from 76 to 339 likes of a community page.
  • A non-official page for Robert Mugabe of Zimbabwe continues 50% fanbase growth every 4-5 months. PM Tsvangirai, with an official page, still has more than five times as many likes, however.
  • Following his death, the community page for Malawi’s Bingu wa Mutharika grew by 147% (from 269 to 665 likes).
  • Official pages draw in more likes. The median number of likes for an official page is 20,000 (4x higher than unofficial pages/groups).
  • In order of sheer fanbase, Egypt now ranks #2 in Africa after the recent elections: Nigeria (727k), Egypt (325k), Kenya (104k), Morocco (88k), Zimbabwe (70k), Tanzania (38k)
  • Please help us find the proper page for Mauritania’s Ba Mamadou Mbaré – he must have more than 4 likes.

Logistical updates for July 2012 include:

  • Angola: Found an open group for Jose Dos Santos that is even more popular than the community page
  • Central African Republic: Added the proper profile for Francois Bozize Yangouvonda (previously had a much less popular one)
  • Democratic Republic of the Congo: Added the unofficial page for Joseph Kabila
  • Cote d’Ivoire: Replaced the unofficial page for Alassane Ouattara (the previous one was removed)
  • Ethiopia: Found the popular unofficial page for Meles Zenawi
  • Sierra Leone: Added official page of Ernest Bai Koroma
  • South Sudan: Added unofficial page for Salva Kiir Mayardit
  • Libya: Abdurrahim El-Keib is Interim Prime Minister of Libya (since October 2011)
  • Niger: Updated leader to Mahamadou Issoufou (president since April 2011)
  • Tunisia: Changed leader to Moncef Marzouki (president since December 2011)
  • Zambia: Changed leader to Michael Sata (president since September 2011, almost has more followers than Rupiah Banda)

The list as of July 12, 2012:

CountryPresident (or other title)Facebook Page Type (hyperlinked)# of Likes% Change since February 2012 (5 months)
AlgeriaAbdelaziz BouteflikaOfficial Page247947%
AngolaJose Dos SantosOpen Group7629n/a
BeninThomas Yayi BoniOfficial Page744613%
BotswanaSeretse Khama Ian KhamaUnofficial Page954316%
Burkina FasoBlaise CompaoréUnofficial Page110248%
BurundiPierre NkurunzizaCommunity Page231-35%
CameroonBiya PaulOfficial Page1526134%
Cape VerdePedro PiresCommunity Page71-93%
Central African RepublicFrancois Bozize YangouvondaPersonal Profile?3560n/a
ChadLt Gen. Idriss DebyPublic Profile 270115%
ComorosAhmed Abdallah SambiCommunity Page876%
Congo, Republic ofDenis Sassou-NguessoOfficial Page | Private Profile7986 / 135810% / 9%
Congo, Democratic Republic ofJoseph KabilaUnofficial Page | Private Profile4750 / 421619%
Cote d'IvoireAlassane OuattaraUnofficial Page7946n/a
DjiboutiIsmail Omar GuellehUnofficial Page?49377%
EgyptMohammed MorsiOfficial Page352000n/a
Equatorial GuineaBrig. Gen. (ret) Teodoro Obiang Nguema MbasogoCommunity Page11214%
EritreaIsaias AfeworkiUnofficial Page864413%
EthiopiaMeles Zenawi (PM)Unofficial Page4072n/a
GabonAli Bongo OndimbaOfficial Page1823140%
The GambiaYahya JammehUnofficial Page66657%
GhanaJohn Evans Atta-MillsUnofficial Page2389910%
GuineaSékouba KonatéUnofficial Page38614%
Guinea-BissauManuel Serifo NhamadjoUnofficial Page103n/a
KenyaMwai KibakiUnofficial Page1040006%
LesothoKing Letsie III (King)Unofficial Page56116%
LiberiaEllen Sirleaf JohnsonCommunity Page345128%
LibyaAbdurrahim El-Keib (PM)Unofficial Page580n/a
MadagascarAndry RajoelinaCommunity Page252-48%
MalawiJoyce BandaCommunity Page1069n/a
MaliDioncounda TraoréOfficial Page735n/a
MauritaniaBa Mamadou MbaréCommunity Page2-50%
MauritiusSir Anerood JugnauthUnofficial Page112531%
MoroccoKing Mohamed VI (King)Unofficial Page878882%
MozambiqueArmando Emilio GuebuzaOfficial Page?478218%
NamibiaHifikepunye PohambaCommunity Page88424%
NigerMahamadou IssoufouOfficial Page?6325n/a
NigeriaDr. Goodluck JonathanOfficial Page7270004%
RwandaPaul KagameUnofficial Page21225872%
Sao Tome & PrincipeFradique De MenezesCommunity Page1721%
SenegalMacky SallOfficial Page27560n/a
SeychellesJames MichelPublic Profile49354%
Sierra LeoneErnest Bai KoromaOfficial Page | Community Page1102 / 2940n/a
SomaliaSharif AhmedUnofficial Page37645%
South AfricaJacob Gedleyihlekisa ZumaCommunity Page777444%
South SudanSalva Kiir MayarditUnofficial Page | Community Page574 / 1116n/a
SudanOmar Hassan al-BashirCommunity Page24555%
SwazilandKing Mswati III (King)Community Page339346%
TanzaniaJakaya KikweteOfficial Page3819110%
TogoFaure Gnassingbe"Fan Club"51219%
TunisiaMoncef MarzoukiUnofficial Page2367n/a
UgandaLt. Gen. Yoweri Kaguta MuseveniUnofficial Page / Profile7895 / 151411% / 14%
ZambiaMichael SataUnofficial Page2847n/a
ZimbabweRobert Gabriel MugabeCommunity Page1215353%
ZimbabweMorgan Tsvangirai (PM)Official Page696934%

Note: The above table lists all top African heads of state (usually President or PM) 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 which in many cases are a best guess have been used.

Stats from July 2010, December 2010, March 2011, June 2011, and October 2011 are also available.

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