Patriotic Front president Michael Sata is the most preferred candidate ahead of this year’s polls according to the opinion poll conducted by the Center for Policy Dialogue.
CPD executive director Neo Simutanyi announced in Lusaka this morning that if elections were held today, PF president Michael Sata would get overall 31 percent of the votes, closely followed by MMD’s Rupiah Banda with 28 percent, with Hakainde Hichilema getting 12 percent.
In 2008, Simuntanyi conducted a similar poll with the same predictions. He disowned it after it was discredited and the results of the elections were different.
Dr. Simutanyi further stated that in terms of voter preference of a political party, the Patriotic Front is likely to obtain the largest number of votes if elections were held today, with 29 percent of voters favoring the largest opposition political party.
He adds that the MMD would get 27 percent with the United Party for National Development getting 10 percent of vote preference.
Dr Simutanyi says his organization conducted a public opinion with a national representative sample of 1,200 registered Zambian voters.
He says the poll was conducted from 14th to the 24th of April 2011 and it covered all the nine provinces of the country and 19 districts.
He observed that a closer examination of electoral preferences suggests that there has been little shift from the 2006 and 2008 scenarios.
Dr. Simutanyi stated that the PF and Michael Sata still command support in their traditional areas of Lusaka, Copperbelt, Luapula and Northern Provinces.
He further observed that the support of all major parties declined significantly from 2008 elections in the areas they claim to have support.
The opinion poll further reveals that 47 percent of Zambians consider overall government performance so far as poor or very poor.
He says 43 percent of the respondents reported that they do not approve the performance of president Rupiah Banda.