2023: “Polls Favouring Obi Lacks Social Desirability Bias” – Farooq Kperogi

Media scholar, Farooq Kperogi, on Saturday said Peter Obi’s electability in opinion polls has been “overestimated”.

TOP MEDIA reports that Obi, a former governor of Anambra State, is the presidential flag-bearer of the Labour Party for the 2023 election.

The 61-year-old remains the top pick for the Nigerian presidency in polls conducted by ANAP, Bloomberg and Stears.

Reacting to the poll results via his weekly column, the US-based professor wrote: “Opinion polls that show him (Obi) with a commanding lead, most of which are mere partisan exaggerations to start with, overlook what we call social desirability bias in social science research and public opinion polling, which is a tendency for survey respondents to give answers that affirm sentiments that are thought to be sanctified by the community that respondents belong to or aspire to belong to.”

He added: “Among southerners and Christians, there’s a lot of stigma in saying you will vote for Atiku Abubakar or Bola Tinubu—and for good reason, to be honest—so it’s not hard to see why they will tell pollsters that they will vote for Obi, the current darling of the South and of Christians, even if they will actually vote for another candidate. There’s also a lot of reputational brownie points to be gained if a Muslim says he’ll vote for Obi, even if he won’t.”

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