A new opinion poll on the fortunes of the candidates for next year’s presidential elections released on Thursday morning by ANAP foundation shows Peter Obi of labour party holding a significant lead over both Bola Ahmed Tinubu of the ruling APC and Atiku Abubakar of the opposition PDP.
In the nationwide poll conducted this month, Peter Obi stands at 21% while both Tinubu and Atiku are tied in second place with 13% each. Kwankwanso of the NNPP is at a distant fourth with only 3%.
ANAP foundation has traditionally organized political opinion polls ahead of each of the presidential elections since 2011 and are conducted by front line polling company, NOI polls. Thursday’s earthshaking poll results were released by ANAP’s founder Atedo Peterside.
He said this recent nationwide opinion poll was concluded in early September 2022 with each of the respondent asked the same question, “suppose the presidential election is being conducted today, who are you likely to vote for.”
According to a statement personally signed by Peterside, “the poll revealed a substantially close race between Mr. Peter Obi of Labour Party (LP), Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu of the All Progressives Congress (APC) and Alhaji Atiku Abubakar of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP).
“Running significantly behind the leading pack is Dr. Rabiu Kwankwaso of the New Nigeria Peoples Party (NNPP) who is the lone outsider. All other contestants polled results that are statistically insignificant.
“The results showed a significant lead for Mr. Peter Obi with 21% of voters proposing to vote for him if the presidential election were to be conducted today; and 13% each proposing to vote for Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu and Alhaji Atiku Abubakar who are both tied in second place. Dr. Rabiu Kwankwaso was a distant fourth with 3% of voters proposing to vote for him.
“Mr. Peter Obi’s 8 percentage point lead at this early stage is significant, but not sufficient to separate him completely from a leading pack of candidates scoring 21%, 13% and 13% respectively.
“Undecided voters and those who prefer not to reveal their preferred candidate add up to a whopping 32% and 15% respectively. The gender split of undecided voters shows that 39% of women are undecided versus 27% of male voters.”
The percentage of registered voters among the respondents is as follows in each of the zones – 99% in the North East, 90% in the South, the North Central and the North West respectively. The lowest registered voter percentages were in the South East with 88% and the South West with 85%.
When asked if respondents were aware of the various candidates vying for the Presidency, data gathered showed that 99% of the respondents were aware of Bola Ahmed Tinubu of the APC, 98% were aware of Atiku Abubakar of the PDP, 95% were aware of Peter Obi of LP and 74% were aware of Dr. Rabiu Kwankwaso of the NNPP. All other candidates scored below 55% in terms of name recognition.
Furthermore, the data from the wide-ranging poll summarizes top five reasons why voters are more inclined to vote in the forthcoming elections, these include: – the need to tackle insecurity (45%), the Economy (20%), Education (9%), Unemployment (7%) and Poverty alleviation (4%).
According to the results, 46% of the respondents said they want to see their preferred presidential candidates participate in a televised interview and/or debate, with the interview/debates spanning across topics like their party manifestos, issues of Security, Economy, Education, Job Creation, Healthcare and Agriculture amongst others.
According to the statement by ANAP foundation, “it is worthy of note that 69% of those aged 18-25, 76% of those aged 26-35, 77% of those aged 36-45, 87% of those aged 46-60 and 89% of those aged 61+ responded saying that they would definitely vote in the coming elections.
“The age groups that expressed the greatest willingness to vote were those between 46-60 and 61+ years. On average, the Poll shows that almost 8 in 10 registered voters are absolutely certain that they would be voting in the next presidential election. If they stay committed, then we could witness a huge turnout in the February 2023 elections.
“Furthermore, Peter Obi led the pack in virtually all the age categories i.e., his leadership was not confined to the youths only.
“While these Poll results show some significant trends, it is key to note that the battle ahead lies in the hands of the undecided/swing voters, as it appears they would ultimately decide which candidate takes the lead to emerge as the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria in the 2023 presidential elections.”
The statement concluded that “in summary, our September 2022 Polls are inconclusive in terms of establishing a clear winner, as the undecided voters are large enough to turn the tables. However, ANAP Foundation has concluded that the trends are clear enough to establish the front runners and so our subsequent polls will concentrate on the four leading candidates only.”
According to one analyst who spoke to BusinessDay, “these results show that Obi can win this election and we may well be headed for a run off between Obi and the second candidate given the relatively humble showing of Obi in some regions. The results also answer the question which many have asked as to whether a vote for Obi is a wasted vote. A vote for Obi is not wasted at all.”