2015 Election: Jonathan, Buhari Can Win- Survey
Following increased public interest which is coupled with uncertainty about election integrity and security of the main contenders in the presidential race, a new Afrobarometer survey has shown what might be the outcome of the polls.
Afrobarometer, an African led, non-partisan research network in a nationwide survey conducted two months before Election Day reveals that “Among respondents who say they are likely to vote, the ruling People's Democratic Party (PDP) and the opposition All Progressives Congress (APC) are tied at 42% each while support for the opposition is at the highest level recorded since Afrobarometer surveys began in Nigeria in 2000, and the challengers are set to make their strongest showing since the restoration of multiparty elections in 1990.”
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According to Nengak Daniel Gondy’s findings of the Round 6 Survey during a press conference in Lagos, said: “Large majorities of Nigerians support elections as the best mechanism for selecting their leaders, Nigerians have confidence in their ability to vote as they choose, and intend to go to the polls. A sizeable majority believe that the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) is adequately prepared to manage the polls, but many citizens also lack confidence in the integrity of the electoral process and express concerns about security and intimidation around the elections Support for the opposition is at the highest level recorded since Afrobarometer surveys began in Nigeria in 2000, and the challengers are set to make their strongest showing since the restoration of multiparty elections in 1990.”
Mr. Gondy further noted that the Survey findings offer a snapshot of voter attitudes in December 2014, just before the presidential campaigns went into full swing.
“In a fluid and highly competitive campaign environment, the presidential race is too close to call,” he quoted the Survey.
Meanwhile, Fieldwork for Afrobarometer Round 6 in Nigeria was conducted by Practical Sampling International (PSI) in collaboration with the CLEEN Foundation.
However, Olusola Moses, the Project Management Director of Practical Sampling International, PSI said he interviewed 2, 400 adult Nigerians between 5 and 27 December 2014 for 80 cases, while supplementary interviews were conducted on 18 and 19 January 2015.
“The sample covered 33 of Nigeria’s 36 states, as well as the Federal Capital Territory. It was not possible to conduct interviews in three states in the North East zone Adamawa, Borno, and Yobe due to unrest in the region, so substitutions of sampling units were made from neighbouring states in the same zone. Thus, each of the country’s zones is represented in proportion to its share of the national population. A sample of this size yields results at the national level with a margin of sampling error of +/-2% at a 95% confidence level,” Moses said.
Previous Afrobarometer surveys have been conducted in Nigeria in 2000, 2001, 2003, 2005, 2007, 2008, and 2012 but key findings in the 2014 Survey aims at determining the Democracy and Political Participation in Nigeria.
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“It shows that Nigerians are generally dissatisfied with current economic conditions and the government’s performance on key issues (Figure 1); 74% say their country is headed in the wrong direction, up from 70% in the previous Afrobarometer survey in 2012. Among respondents who say they are likely to vote, the ruling People's Democratic Party (PDP) and the opposition All Progressives Congress (APC) are tied at 42% each; The survey has a margin of sampling error of +/- 2%; 80% of Nigerians say they are free to vote as they choose, although 50% express significant concern about political intimidation or violence in the current election environment, a dramatic increase from 34% just two years ago,” the Survey added.
Meanwhile, the All Progressive Congress (APC) has raised the alarm that President Jonathan is plotting to thwart the February 14 election by forcing a constitutional crisis.