NOI-Gallup Polls: Again, Nigerians Want Government to Focus On Power And Jobs
79 % of Nigerians Don’t Know The Yar’adua Seven Point Agenda
Lagos, Nigeria – 6th February, 2007 – For the second year running, Nigerians have asked the federal government to put the improvement of the nation’s epileptic electricity supply and job creation at the very top of its policy priorities. This was one of the key findings of the latest NOI-GALLUP Polls whose results were released in February 2008.
In the survey of various government priorities, respondents who were selected through a scientific process of random sampling were asked the question: Which of the following is the most important issue the government should address in the next 12 months? Respondents were provided with a number of options, namely: electricity, water, road system, rail system, agriculture, education, healthcare, corruption, security, creating new jobs, and ‘other’.
Electricity was identified as the most vital national need by the greatest proportion of respondents (23%); job creation was second with 17%.
According to the findings of the survey, other areas which the administration should also give attention to are the road system (14%), education (14%) and water (11%). In the last poll, released May 2007, power and jobs were also identified as being of pre-eminent concern to majority of Nigerians.
Corruption fared poorly. It came in 6th having been identified by just 7% of Nigerians as a top priority. Given the fact that the issue has been on the front burner of national discourse for the past four years this is indeed a surprise. There are several possible ways of looking at this result. It can be interpreted as a consequence of battle fatigue, a perception that the struggle against corruption has either substantially been won or a belief that substantial progress has been made in containing it.
The rail system did even worse than corruption. Less than one percent of respondents identified it as a worthy national priority. This is likely to be a product of apathy. After so many failed starts and very little progress, Nigerians seem to have given up hope that the rail system would ever be resurrected. Security did only marginally better, voted by only 2% of respondents as top national concern.
The results also show that there exists a consensus of Nigerians across all educational levels about the importance of electricity and creating jobs. Men (at 15%) place more importance on water than women (8%). The highest support for electricity can be found in Lagos and Kano which is not surprising given that they are both industrial hubs and also large urban centres.
A related survey also found that an overwhelming 79% of Nigerians are ignorant of the economic blueprint of the Yar’adua government known as the Seven-Point Agenda. Only 15% of those polled could name at least two of them. According to the Seven-Point Agenda, the government’s expenditure priorities are to be focused on the following areas:
1. Power and Energy
2. Food Security and Agriculture,
3. Wealth Creation and Employment,
4. Mass Transportation,
5. Land Reform,
7. Qualitative and Functional Education
This finding suggests that the federal government needs to do a lot more to sell its vision in order to make Nigerians full partners in its quest to raise living standards and improve the welfare of the people.
About NOI Polls
NOI Polls is a Nigeria-based opinion research organisation that works in partnership with Gallup Poll (USA) to conduct periodic scientific opinion polls in Nigeria. These polls survey citizens’ views, attitudes, and perceptions on a variety of social and economic issues such as governance, market trends, management of the economy, health and welfare, and the performance of government and private sector institutions. Information from the poll is aimed at supporting decision-making by business executives and government policymakers. The second NOI-Gallup Nigeria national poll was conducted in November 2007, and released in February 2008. The poll involved face-to-face interviews conducted across Nigeria in five languages (English, Hausa, Ibo, Pidgin English, and Yoruba). Further information about NOI Polls is available online at www.noi-polls.com.
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