The New Nigeria Peoples Party (NNPP), has warned that fake opinion polls will cause violence in the 2023 general elections.
The conduct of opinion polls is part of political activities carried out towards the conduct of elections in Nigeria, especially in the presidential elections, but NNPP warned that conducting fake opinion polls will set the country on fire.
A statement issued by the national publicity secretary of the NNPP, Major Agbo, said opinion poll can be very exciting as it allows the political parties to understand their performances in the electioneering in the run up to an election thereby, helping such political parties to either continue or change strategies but warned that doing such in a wrong way can cause violence.
“Some important ingredients of credible opinion polls are sampling different strata of populations, size of samples, distribution of samples across the constituency, professionals to conduct the polls and specifying margin of errors. All these are missing in the charade called opinion polls as being witnessed in the up to the 2023 general election in Nigeria.
“It is disheartening and disturbing the character and result of public opinion polls on the 2023 presidential election being released by selfish and unprofessional groups that don’t have any pedigree, giving misleading results designed to promote a certain candidate as a leading contender. More worrisome is that most media houses have fallen for this joke that has many far-reaching implications to the credibility of the elections and the security of the country. One cannot blame the media for reporting these fake opinion polls, however, the fourth realm of the estate needs to be wary to celebrate these falsehoods in their reportage.
“The so-called groups conducting these fake polls may be doing so in order to: connive with some candidates to deceive the public and confer undue advantage on some preferred candidates; deceive the undecided voters to move their attention to a dubiously acclaimed winning candidate; discourage supporters of other candidates so as to sway their support to the fraudulently acclaimed leading candidate; set up a booby trap for potential crisis if the criminally promoted candidate does not win by crying rigging.
“We cannot forget in a hurry our experience in 2011 when the country was thrown into an unavoidable crisis following alleged rigging of elections due to fake opinion polls bandied before the elections. Many lives and properties were destroyed due to the wickedness of fake pollsters and the laxity of authorities. Therefore, it is pertinent to call on all these fake public opinion polls mongers to desist from driving the country into crisis. We equally call on security agencies to be alive to their responsibilities and be more interested in the activities of all the dubious social media public opinion polls warriors.
“We cannot sit down and allow selfish and fake individuals to aggravate the tense situation we are passing through in our dear country by releasing fake opinion polls results which is as dangerous as releasing fake election results. They are a recipe for political upheavals, anarchy and crisis in the polity.”