ROSEAU, Dominica – The Barbados-based Caribbean Development Research Services (CADRES) last Thursday said many Dominicans expect the ruling Dominica Labour Party (DLP) to win the December 6 general election, but cautioned “that this is not necessarily an expression of voting intention”.
CADRES director Peter Wickham, speaking at a news conference, where he unveiled the results of a poll conducted here during the month of October said 48 per cent of those polled said they expected the DLP to win the elections, while 25 per cent said they expected the main opposition United Workers Party (UWP) to win and 27 per cent were unsure or preferred not to say.
The regional political scientist told reporters that the survey was based on just over 1,000 interviews that were conducted in all 21 constituencies across Dominica and the questionnaire used was structured and sought information on the main issues of concern, including the leader preferred to lead the island over the next five years and the respondents voting intention.
Prime Minister Roosevelt Skerrit is seeking an unprecedented fourth consecutive term in power, while his main challenger is Opposition Leader Lennox Linton.
Wickham told reporters that the issue of leadership is always a critical indicator and in this regard respondents were asked which leader they would “prefer” at this time and the majority -39 per cent- said that they would prefer Prime Minister Skerrit, while the second largest quantity (31 per cent) opted for Linton.
But he noted that 26 per cent of those questioned did not answer the question and four per cent said they were genuinely uncertain about which leader they preferred.
“In this regard, the preferred leader responses were cross tabulated with party support, in particular the “Uncertain voter” who did not opt for Labour or UWP in the party support question and a majority of these persons (69 per cent) did not commit to either leader. Among those who did, the majority (13 per cent) preferred Prime Minister Skerrit while eight per cent preferred Opposition Leader Linton,” Wickham said.
He said when respondents were asked about their voting intention and their expectation regarding the outcome ‘”some 48 per cent said they expected the DLP to win the December 6 elections, while 25 per cent said they expected the UWP to win and 27 per cent were unsure or preferred not to say.
“This conveys a sense that Dominicans expect the DLP to emerge victorious, but it should be noted that this is not necessarily an expression of voting intention,” Wickham said.