PML-N popularity soars, PTI’s falls

Afzal Khan
Filed on September 30, 2012

ISLAMABAD The Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) is currently the most popular party in the country amid a sharp decline in public standing of its trenchant critic, the Pakistan Tehrik-e-Insaaf, a survey has shown

The survey carried out by the International Republican Institute (IRI) shows a 3.7 per cent surge in the PML-N popularity with corresponding 22 per cent decline suffered by the PTI compared to its February opinion poll this year.

The IRI survey was carried out between July and August 2012 from a pool of 6,001 respondents who were posed the question that if the elections for the National Assembly were to be held next week, who would they likely vote for.

According to the IRI survey, 28 per cent of the respondents agreed to vote for PML-N, closely followed by PTI at 24 per cent. The Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) took the third spot with 14 per cent votes whereas Muttahida Quami Movement (MQM) polled 3 per cent.

When asked about electing representatives in, 43 per cent respondents from Punjab agreed to vote for the PML-N.

In spite of facing severe criticism with respect to its governance from rival parties such as PPP and PTI, the political party maintained its top position.

Furthermore, according to the survey, PTI lost 18.2 per cent of its vote bank, with 27 per cent of the respondents agreeing to vote for the party in July-August compared to an earlier 33 per cent. A 22.2 per cent decline in PPP’s popularity was witnessed in the province, and the Pakistan Muslim League-Quaid (PML-Q) was chosen by two per cent of the respondents.

In Sindh, the PPP took the top spot while the MQM surged up by 22.4 per cent. However, according to the survey, the PPP has lost its popularity in the province by 7.1 per cent. The PTI took second place but witnessed a sharp decline of 13.3 per cent in its votebank whereas the PML-N showed no change despite its vigorous campaign to woo nationalists.

In Khyber Pukhtunkhwa, amid an overall downward trend in political parties’ popularity, the ruling ANP suffered a free fall by a whopping 92.3 per cent drop in its votebank with only one per cent of the respondents agreeing to vote for it compared to 13 per cent in February. Though the PTI maintained its position as the most popular party in the province with 30 per cent agreeing to vote for it, its votebank also shrunk by 38.8 per cent.

The PPP’s popularity also showed a sharp decline by 75 per cent as only two per cent of the respondents agreed to vote for the party. At 9 per cent position, there was no change in respondents’ preference for PML-N.

In Balochistan too the downward trend in political support was witnessed. The PTI took the top slot with 26 per cent against previous of 35 per cent, a loss of 38.8 per cent. The PML-N stood at only eight.

According to the survey 91 per cent of the people believed that Pakistan was heading in the wrong direction. Respondents termed electricity and inflation to be the two most important issues being faced by Pakistan.

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