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The beautiful game of soccer excites millions of Nigerians, Constitutional Blues, Tertiary education

As the host nation and defending champions of the FIFA 2009 Under-17 World Cup, the buzz around the tournament in Nigeria has been tremendous. Our survey revealed that four in ten Nigerians (40%) were optimistic that the Golden Eaglets will reach the finals of the FIFA 2009 under-17 World Cup competition, although fewer people (14%) thought that the Nigerian team would feature in the quarter finals, 12% said the semi finals, 6% chose the first round while the remaining 6% believe Nigeria’s progress will end at the second round of the tournament.

Constitutional Blues…

The much-anticipated review of the 1999 Constitution has begun, following the submission of six Executive bills by President Umaru Musa Yar’Adua to the National Assembly. Again, awareness of this momentous event is high among Nigerians. Our snap poll indicates that 72% of the people interviewed are aware of the constitutional review, while a further 76% of respondents agreed that this is the right time for the review.

Tertiary education in turmoil

The four-month deadlock between the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) and the Federal Government abruptly ended on October 23, with the formal suspension of the nationwide industrial action that was started on June 22 by the ASUU. The Union’s demands included full autonomy for public universities, better pay and benefits for university teachers, and improved learning conditions for students. Our survey reveals a general perception of the parlous state of tertiary education in Nigeria – 56% of respondents said that the Nigerian government is not committed to improving the education sector, and a further 67% said that industrial action by ASUU and other unions in the education sector is justified. However, over three-quarters of respondents (78%) identified dialogue and negotiation as the best strategy to secure the government’s commitment to tackling the educational crisis in Nigeria, while 17% chose the more hard-line strategy of industrial action by the unions.

Barack Obama, Peace Laureate?

On September 9, President Barack Obama of the United States became the surprise recipient of the 2009 Nobel Peace Prize, for his efforts towards nuclear disarmament. However, the award to President Obama, who is just nine months into his tenure, generated both praise from his allies, especially in Europe, and criticism from domestic critics who opined that the Prize was prematurely awarded. Past surveys by NOI Polls have shown that Nigerians have a favourable view of the Obama presidency, and the reaction to President Obama’s Nobel Peace Prize is consistent with this view. 73% of Nigerians interviewed in the recent snap poll were aware of President Obama’s Nobel Peace Prize, and a majority of respondents (78%) said it was a well deserved award.

Survey Methods

Respondents for the snap poll were randomly selected from a database of phone-owning Nigerians aged 15 and above, complied by NOI Polls. 726 people took part in the telephone interviews over a four day period from the 23rd to the 27th of October 2009. 85 percent of respondents were male, while 15 percent were female. NOI Polls adopts scientifically robust techniques in conducting opinion surveys. Our snap polls are valid within a statistical margin of error, also known as a 95 percent confidence interval.

Nigerians categorically condemn Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab’s alleged actions.

Nigerians woke up on Christmas day, 2009 to the shocking news that a Nigerian born man had attempted to blow up a Detroit bound Northwest Airline flight 253. While reacting with surprise that a fellow Nigerian could attempt such an atrocity, the majority of Nigerians also roundly condemned the act. Our survey shows that over nine in ten Nigerians (91%) disapprove of Abdulmutallab’s actions with just one percent (1%) expressing support. However, eight percent of respondents were either undecided or refused to provide an opinion on the issue.

Attack will damage Nigeria’s Image abroad….

The consequences of the failed terror attack are already reverberating around the world and impacting on the lives of Nigerians home and abroad. The recent blacklisting of Nigeria by the United States government is one example of the negative effect of the botched terror attack. Our snap poll indicates that the majority (62%) of Nigerians feel that Abdulmutallab’s actions will damage the image of the country, while 16% and 12% are more worried about restrictions in the issuance of visas to Nigerians and worsening foreign relations respectively.

Where is Mr. President?.

The President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, President Umaru Musa Yar’Adua has now been absent from the country on the grounds of ill health for over 50 days. While the initial public response of goodwill towards the ill President still obtains, there have been increasing demands for decisive resolution to the perceived leadership vacuum created by his absence. This was verified by our snap poll which found that as many as 74% of respondents feel that Mr. President’s absence will have various dire effects on Nigeria. Out of this group of respondents, 29% of feel that the economy will suffer the most, while 26% believe that Mr. President’s absence will cripple public administration, as well as affect national security, implementation of Niger Delta amnesty deal and achievement of the 7 point agenda

Survey Methods.

Respondents for the snap poll were randomly selected from a database of phone-owning Nigerians aged 15 and above, compiled by NOI Polls. 725 people took part in the telephone interviews from the 4th – 8th of January, 2010. For a sample of this size, we can say with 95% confidence that the maximum margin of sampling error is ±3.6 percentage points. The margin of error reflects the influence of data weighting. In addition to sampling error, question wording and practical difficulties in conducting surveys can introduce error or bias into the findings of public opinion polls.


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