Abuja, Nigeria, March 8th, 2022 – Africa Polling Institute recently released its monthly NigeriaSpeaks poll report for February 2022. The poll was undertaken in the week of February 17th, 2022 to elicit citizens’ perception and attitudes on topical issues and trends covering a potpourri of social, economic, political, governance and public-life issues. The NigeriaSpeaks poll project is a series of monthly nationwide public opinion polls, aimed at bridging the gap in primary data, by capturing public opinion and allowing citizens to lend their voice to public policy discourse, practice, and advocacy.
In summary, the February 2022 poll revealed that Nigerians have expressed anger and frustration over the lingering fuel scarcity in the country, as 92% of respondents have experienced scarcity of the product in their respective locations; resulting in high cost of transport (88%), increase in food prices (59%), and reliance on fuel hawkers (black marketers) for their supply (35%). Consequently, citizens blamed the Minister of State for Petroleum Resources and the Group Managing Director (GMD) of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), suggesting that they are not doing enough to address the situation and alleviate the pain caused by fuel scarcity on the masses.
In addition, the poll sought the opinion of citizens on the spate of ritual killings in the country; and found that 82% of respondents expressed concerns over the prevalence of ritual killings, especially amongst youths in Nigeria; as they consider a number of factors responsible for this trend, such as the get-rich-quick syndrome (62%), peer pressure (40%), unemployment (29%), and poor parental upbringing (23%) amongst others. Finally, the poll revealed that in order to address the issue of ritual killings amongst youths, there’s need to create job opportunities (55%), provide closer local security, such as community policing (12%), and ensure adequate that justice and adequate punishment is meted out to perpetrators of ritual killing (12%) amongst others.
Detailed Poll Results & Findings
Given the current fuel crisis bedeviling the country, the first question from the poll asked citizens if they have experienced fuel scarcity in their location in the past 4 weeks. From the poll responses, the majority of respondents (92%) confirmed they experienced fuel scarcity in their location in the past 4 weeks, compared to a few respondents (8%) who said they have not experienced fuel scarcity in their location in the past 4 weeks.
As a follow-up to the preceding analysis, the second question sought to examine the impact of fuel scarcity on Nigerians and their household in general. Overall, findings from the poll revealed that fuel scarcity has had a significant negative impact on households; and Nigerians expressed anger and frustration over the situation. From the poll responses, majority of respondents (88%) expressed their anger and frustration that the fuel scarcity has resulted in “High cost of transport”, “Increase in food prices” (59%), and “Reliance on fuel hawkers (black-marketers)” (35%). Others said they have had to resort to making “Use of public transport instead of private cars” (32%) and it had affected some businesses (5%) amongst others.
Also, the poll sought to capture citizens’ awareness of the incidence of adulterated fuel or dirty fuel that was imported into the country. From the responses, the majority of respondents (66%) claimed to had experienced or heard about the incidence of adulterated fuel, compared to 27% who hadn’t expressed experienced or heard about it.
Furthermore, the poll sought to examine the effort of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) / Ministry of Petroleum Resources toward addressing the issue of fuel scarcity. Surprisingly, from the poll responses, only 25% of respondents opined that the NNPC / Ministry of Petroleum Resources is doing enough to address the issue of fuel scarcity, compared to 40% who opined they are not doing enough.
In addition, disaggregated data showed that there are more citizens in the North-Central (52%), South-East (49%), and South-South (47%) zones who suggested that the NNPC and the Ministry of Petroleum Resources are not doing enough to address the situation and alleviate the pain caused by fuel scarcity on the masses. On the contrary, the North-West zone, with 43%, had the highest responses who said the NNPC and the Ministry of Petroleum Resources are doing enough.
The next question focused on social-related issues and sought the opinion of Nigerians on the prevalence of ritual killings especially amongst youths in Nigeria. From the poll responses, a vast majority of the respondents (82%) believe the issue of ritual killings amongst youths is ‘Somewhat’ or ‘Very’ Prevalent in Nigeria today compared to 12% who do “Not at all” believe the issue is prevalent.
In addition, respondents were asked to identify factors responsible for the reported cases of killings in society today. From the poll responses, the top three factors highlighted by respondents are: “Get-Rich-Quick syndrome” (62%), “Peer pressure” (40%), and “Unemployment” (39%). Other factors mentioned are “Poor parental upbringing” (23%), “Poverty” (17%), “Heightened insecurity” (11%), “Decline in societal moral values” (8%), and “Lack of education” (5%).
Consequently, the poll sought the opinion of Nigerians regarding safety measures they think people can take to avoid being victims of ritual killing. From the responses, “Be safety conscious / Avoid late nights & lonely places” (48%) came first on the list of safety measures people can take to avoid being victims of ritual killing. Following this was “Be contented / Prayerful & trust your instincts” (32%). Other measures highlighted by respondents include: “Keep good company / Avoid peer pressure” (6%), “Let people know your whereabout at all time” (3%) amongst others.
The poll also sought to elicit the views of citizens on what should be done to address the rising incidence of ritual killing in society. From the responses, the top three (3) priority areas identified by citizens are: “Create job opportunities” (55%), “Better security measures / community policing” (12%), and “Adequate justice to offenders or perpetrators” (12%). Other areas mentioned are: “Bringing back our moral values to the society” (10%), and “Educate the society / create more awareness” (3%).
In addition, the poll also sought the opinion of citizens regarding February 14th, a day popularly observed as Valentine’s Day. From the poll, majority of respondents (64%) stated that they do not believe in Valentine’s Day; compared to 30% of who affirmed their belief in Valentine’s Day.
Consequently, the 3 in 10 respondents who said they believe in Valentine’s Day were further probed to find out what the day means to them. Interestingly, the majority stated that the day represents a Celebration of love / Lovers Day (92%), as well as a day to Show Care and Charity (5%) and Share Gifts (1%).
In addition, respondents were asked how they spent the day. Findings revealed that more than half of the respondents (54%) celebrated Valentine’s Day at Home / Farm/work / Shop and Church. This was closely followed by 22% of respondents who said they celebrated Valentine’s Day with their loved ones, 17% said they went out to see a movie, 3% said they celebrated Valentine’s Day by exchanging gifts, and 4% of the respondents said they forgot about celebrating Valentine’s Day.
This poll is part of the monthly NigeriaSpeaks series of national public opinion polls conducted by Africa Polling Institute (API). The opinion poll was administered between February 17th to 24th 2022. It involved telephone interviews of a random nationwide sample. 1,021 randomly selected phone-owning Nigerians aged 18 years plus, representing the six geopolitical zones in the country, were interviewed. With a sample of this size, we can say with 95% confidence that the results obtained are statistically precise – within a range of plus or minus 5%. Members of the public are welcome to suggest questions to the monthly poll.
Africa Polling Institute (API) is an independent, non-profit and non-partisan opinion research think-tank, which conducts opinion polls, surveys, social research, and evaluation studies at the intersection of democracy, governance, economic conditions, markets, and public life; to support better public policy, practice, and advocacy in sub-Saharan Africa.
Professor Bell Ihua