If we asked you to describe the 2023 presidential election campaigns, what word would you use? 

Whichever word just ran through your mind, we know it doesn’t rhyme with “boring” or “dry”, because the campaign season has been entertaining. 

Millions of Nigerian voters have picked their candidates for the 2023 presidential election, but we won’t know who has more supporters until February 2023. But because some people want to see the future, they’ve been organising polls to frame the picture of what will happen. These polls represent the most dominant public opinion and we looked at five of the biggest polls to see which candidate is leading.

NOI Poll — Peter Obi

According to a poll conducted by the NOI Polls Opinion Learning Center (NOPC) in September 2022, Labour Party (LP) presidential candidate, Peter Obi, will most likely win the election with 21% of the votes.

Bloomberg Poll — Peter Obi

The candidate of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP), Atiku Abubakar, and the All Progressive Congress (APC) candidate, Bola Tinubu, ended up with 13% each. Rabiu Kwankwaso of the New Nigeria People’s Party (NNPP) finished last with only 3% of voters rooting for him.

Obi was also projected to win another poll conducted by American media company, Bloomberg. He finished the poll with a whopping 72% of decided voters rooting for him.

Tinubu finished the poll with 16% of voters in his corner and Atiku finished in third place with 9%.

Fitch Institute Research — Bola Tinubu 

Obi’s flawless record as the winner of presidential polls ended when Fitch Solutions, a research company, released its own report and crowned Tinubu the most likely winner. 

However, Tinubu’s projected victory wasn’t without a comma as Fitch also projected it would cause social unrest in Nigeria especially due to his choice of another Muslim as vice-president.

We2Geda — Peter Obi

When We2Geda asked 15,438 registered voters across Nigeria in September 2022 who they plan to vote for, 51% of them crowned Obi. 25% of them ended up in Atiku’s corner and Tinubu had to settle for 19% of respondents.

Further analysis also showed Obi remained a favourite in four geopolitical zones: North-Central, South-South, South-West, and South-East, while Atiku was the poll leader in the North-East and North-West zones.

Nextier — Peter Obi

When Nextier polled 2,000 Nigerians in rural areas, they also crowned Obi as Nigeria’s next president. Nextier excluded the home states of the leading presidential and vice-presidential candidates in conducting the poll.

Who’s the winner?

After much deliberation and collation of facts, the winner of the 2023 presidential election polls is… Peter Obi!

But how effective are opinion polls on Nigerian elections?

Polls aren’t considered a big deal in Nigerian elections, but facts don’t lie and neither does history. In 2010, 53% of people from the NOI poll believed that Jonathan would win the 2011 election, and he did. Buhari also won the NOI poll of 2014 with 32% and later became president in 2015. He also won the NOI poll of 2018 ahead of the 2019 election and look who’s still our president.

If the history of polls tells you anything, it’s that they can be very reliable. However, it’s still nothing but a waiting game until Nigerians elect their new president on February 25, 2023.


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