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Presidency: Peter Obi to face Atiku or Tinubu in runoff election – Nextier Poll predicts

Clockwise: Peter Obi, Bola Tinubu and Atiku Abubakar


ABUJA (Sundiata Post) – Mr. Peter Obi, presidential candidate of Labour Party is likely to face either Vice President Atiku Abubakar, candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) or Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) in a second round election (run-off) to determine winner of the 2023 presidential election.

This is the outcome of the latest opinion poll on the 25 February presidential election released on Sunday by Nextier Poll and made available to Sundiata Post.

According to Nextier, the poll was conducted on 27 January on a sample size of 3,000 voters.
It said Obi polled 37 percent of the survey respondents, followed by Atiku with 27 percent while Tinubu got 24 percent.

The report said although Obi had the highest poll, it is unlikely to give him outright victory in first ballot.

Patrick O. Okigbo III, founding partner of Nextier, stated in the report that the presidential election is shaping
to be one of the most keenly contested races in recent decades.

The current poll is the second opinion poll Nextier has conducted on the 2023 presidential election. The first poll released on 20 November 2022 conducted in rural communities in 12 states across Nigeria gave Peter Obi, 40.37 percent of survey respondents. Atiku Abubakar got 26.7 percent while Bola Tinubu got 20.47 percent with about 7.16 percent of the respondents undecided.

The full report of the current poll reads:

A recent face-to-face nationwide poll on Nigeria’s 2023 presidential elections shows Labour Party leading the voters’ preference at 37 percent of the survey respondents. The People’s Democratic Party (PDP) secured 27 percent of the survey responses, while the All Progressives Congress secured 24 percent, with the New Nigeria Peoples Party at 6 percent.

Nextier, an Africa-focused consulting firm, conducted its second presidential poll on Friday, January 27, 2023, four weeks before the scheduled presidential elections. The team used a sample size of 3,000 respondents and generated a margin of error of 2 percent at a 95 percent confidence interval. The survey sample represented the age and gender demographics in Nigeria’s 36 states and the Federal Capital Territory.

Although Labour Party secured the highest voter preference, it is unlikely to secure an outright first-round victory. None of the presidential candidates met both criteria for victory in the first round: a majority of votes cast and 25 percent in two-thirds of the states. The survey results show that Labour Party can achieve 25 percent of the votes in 23 states. Therefore, the presidential election could head to a runoff between Peter Obi and Atiku Abubakar or Bola Tinubu.

Most registered voters (72 percent) have decided on their preferred party. This result is consistent across rural and urban voters. Similarly, the survey data demonstrates that respondents are certain in their choices. Eighty-three percent of the respondents indicated that nothing would make them change their preferred party before the elections. It is important to note that the survey questionnaire showed the party logos and names instead of the candidates’ names or images.

Voter turnout in the 2023 presidential election could be significantly higher than in 2019. For instance, 77 percent of respondents indicated that they ‘will vote’ in this election, while 63 percent stated that they “will definitely vote.” This level of commitment was consistent across all age and gender demographics in rural and urban communities.

Despite the voter commitment, turnout could be depressed by a combination of factors: insecurity, concerns about the freedom and fairness of the election, and concerns about the impartiality of Nigeria’s Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC). Only 52 percent of the respondents trust that the elections will be free and fair. Only 47 percent of respondents trust that INEC will not manipulate the results.

Radio (33 percent) and WhatsApp/social media (29 percent) should be the key communication channels for political parties ahead of the election day. About 16 percent of respondents said they get information on the candidates and the political parties from their families and friends.

The same percentage get their information from television. Only 2 percent get their information from their religious leaders, while 1 percent get theirs from traditional leaders.
There are slight variations between urban and rural voters.

Nextier Founding Partner, Patrick O. Okigbo III, stated that the presidential election is shaping to be one of the most keenly contested races in recent decades. “It is exciting to see Nigerians take their civic responsibilities seriously.” He confirmed that, in addition to the two national polls, Nextier would continue to provide data analysis and insights on Nigeria’s elections, and other development issues.

In summary, although the Labour Party secured the highest voter preference, Nigeria’s 2023
presidential elections will likely go into a second-round runoff with Peter Obi and one of either
Atiku Abubakar or Bola Tinubu. (See the graphs).

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