Politics once again played a major role in South Africa’s Google searches this week‚ thanks largely to the announcement of Cyril Ramaphosa’s new Cabinet. People scrambled to find out more about the new ministers and the deputy minister. And Standard Bank trended on pay day.
On Monday night Ramaphosa announced his first cabinet since coming into office. The term “Cabinet reshuffle” saw more than 200,000 searches on the day‚ according to a Google statement issued on Friday.
The two who sparked the most interest were David Mabuza‚ the new deputy president‚ and Bheki Cele‚ who became the police minister. They each received more than 50,000 searches.
Next was Bathabile Dlamini‚ the former Social Development Minister linked to the social grants debacle‚ who survived the Cabinet shakeup. She’s now Minister of Women in the Presidency‚ a move described by the Daily Maverick as “giving women the middle finger”.
Interest in state capture and the economy was reflected in the searches for Pravin Gordhan‚ the finance minister fired by Jacob Zuma (now himself no longer president) who is now the Public Enterprises minister‚ and for Malusi Gigaba who was removed as the finance minister and given his old job at the Home Affairs department.
Gordhan and Gigaba had about 10,000 searches each.
Interest in Standard Bank spiked on Wednesday. The 50,000 searches it received were largely because its systems were down‚ preventing people from making payments. And it happened at the end of the month – pay day.
On the sports front‚ Manchester United and Arsenal saw more than 50,000 over the weekend.
Search trends in South Africa tend to be news and sports-driven‚ said Google in its statement.
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