Hollande hammered in polls as prepares for TV grilling

14th April 2016, Comments 0 comments

Almost nine out of 10 French people have a negative view of Francois Hollande's time as president, a poll showed Thursday, as he prepared to face the public in a TV question-and-answer session.

The poll for BFMTV showed that 87 percent of respondents had an unfavourable opinion of his four years at the helm, and he did not fare much better among supporters of his own Socialist Party, with 69 percent backing that view.

Later Thursday Hollande will face a 90-minute grilling from a panel of three journalists and four French voters.

The voters have been chosen to represent the issues that have dogged Hollande since he became president in 2012.

There will be a company boss, a woman whose jihadist son has gone to Syria, a business student who writes a left-wing blog and a bus driver who votes for the far-right National Front (FN).

Hollande, who is believed to be preparing to stand for a second term in next year's presidential elections, has focused on trying to reduce stubbornly high unemployment, the thorniest issue of his time in office.

But another poll, for the Paris daily Le Parisien, showed that 69 percent of people will not change their minds even if he manages to reduce the jobless numbers.

And three-quarters of respondents believe he should abandon hopes of standing for a second term "to allow the Left to find a better candidate".

Hollande's ratings briefly zoomed up to 50 percent, the best since 2012, following his hardline response against jihadists after the Paris attacks in November.

© 2016 AFP

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