If presidential elections were held in June 2012 the ruling People’s Party would have won with 46 %, an opinion poll by Afro-barometer has indicated, but it is unclear if the percentage has increased or waned three months down the line.
The Afrobarometer is a pan-African network of researchers that carry out surveys to gauge public opinion toward democracy, governance, the economy, leadership, identity, and other related issues.
Dr. Maxton Tsoka, Afrobarometer National Investigator for Malawi, confirmed carrying out the survey in all the districts except Likoma.
However, PP Secretary General Henry Chibwana said the figure is on the lower side considering that the party has over four million members.
“The 46 percent is not good enough because it is below 50%. But if the poll was more scientific then the figure should have started from 55% percent because as a party we have over four million members,” said Chibwana by phone Wednesday.
The Malawi survey was carried out in June 2012 and sampled a total of 2,400 adult citizens across the country.
“If an election were held in mid June 2012, the PP presidential candidate would have won easily, with 46% of the vote,” reads the report.
The report says the PP candidate would have benefitted a lot from the support of ‘independent voters’ – those individuals who claim not to support any political party.
The report further says the PP has overtaken the DPP as the most supported party, but with only 27% of Malawians claiming its membership.
The DPP is second with 16%, followed by UDF and MCP with 9 and 4% support respectively.
The Afrobarometer findings also indicate that the PP enjoys the highest share of support in the Northern and Central regions while the DPP is still marginally ahead in the Southern region.
But DPP Spokesperson Nicholas Dausi faulted the poll, saying it is manipulative and does not reflect the reality on the ground.
“PP cannot win elections. DPP remains the most trusted party with sound policies. We doubt the credibility of the poll,” said Dausi.
On gay marriages, the report’s findings show that over 94% of Malawians are against homosexuality and same sex marriages.
The report says while most supporters of the main political parties are against gay marriages, the People’s Party supporters are the most conservative, with 98% of them against gay relationships while DPP supporters are the least conservative, with 92% against gay relationships.