Malawi government has rejected the opinion poll showing that President Peter Mutharika’s popularity has dipped as opposition Malawi Congress Party (MCP) leader Lazarous Chakwera’s ratings climbed.
Minister of Information, Communications and Technology (ICT), Nicholous Dausi said the opinion poll by Central Media Development (CMD) Limited is a scheme to tarnish the DPP government and described it a manipulated survey, saying there is no point discussing it .
Dausi, who is also government spokesman, dismissed the CMD Limited survey as mercurial or irrelevant or both.
“The only poll that matters is the one on election day. The opinion poll is wrong, disingenuous and mala-fide,” he said.
He termed the opinion polls unreliable and inaccurate “released out of paranoa, fallacy, political inertia and it’s a bunch of bull—- propaganda.”
Dausi questioned the methodology of the pollsters, saying it lacks credibility.
But CMD Limited which is owned among them Thomson Reuters journalist Mabvuto Banda, said tt is not a good idea to dismiss public surveys out of hand.
It explained the methodology it used in the survey conducted mostly by university students and journalists.
“A total sample size of 3,883 respondents was used and this sample was assigned to the regions and districts based on the population ratios of the 2008 population and housing census,” said CMD Limited in a poll report.
According to the national statistical office, the total population of Malawi in 2008 was 13,077,160 comprising of 1,798,930(Northern Region) representing about 13% of the total population, while the southern region contributed 5,858,035 representing 45% of the population, and finally the Central Region with 5,510,195 representing 42% of the total population.
Following the 2008 population distribution ( by region), the survey assigned the sample size of 3883 to the Northern, Central and Southern Region using 13%,42% and 45% respectively, translating to 500 respondents( about 13%) in the NorthernRegion, 1633 respondents (42%) in the Central Region and 1750 respondents ( 45%) in the Southern Region.
“The regional samples were further assigned to districts, by using the population distribution ratios as of 2008 population and housing census results. Blantyre, Lilongwe and Zomba were divided into city and district, i.e. Zomba City and Zomba district; Blantyre City and Blantyre district; Lilongwe district and Lilongwe City. The same applied for Mzimba which was divided into Mzimba district and Mzuzu City,” said CMD.
Further, due to logistical challenges, the team was not able to have interviews on Likoma Island, saying there is no result for Likoma district.
The interviews included and accounted for a sub-sample of 3,183 “likely voters,” corresponding to a presidential election turnout of 82 percent, it said.
CMD said the survey is based on a representative sample of all areas of the country, including the most rural; over 240 different sampling points included small rural villages. (e.g.Lanston Njema EA7, STA Chitekwere EA31, and phalombe TA mkhumba EA109) results from the full sample are subject to weighing the data to account for potential abnormalities in various sampling environments, improving the statistical margin of sampling error to +/-3.1 percent; and results for likely voters are subject to a margin sampling of sampling error of+/-3.6 percent.
The pollsters said the public claimed that President Muthaika needs to live the austerity talk and continue to pursue all roads of stopping and prosecuting corrupt activity.
It said people want Mutharika’s ruling DPP to “stop exaggerating the fruits of the economic reform as the so called fruits have not yet trickled down to the masses in full.”Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :