Petition Against The Patently Partisan And Unprofessional Conduct Of Thisday Newspapers

Rotimi Fashakin(Engr.)

Petition Against The Patently Partisan And Unprofessional Conduct Of Thisday Newspapers Regarding The Public Opinion Poll (Pop) That Deliberately Aims To Boost The Electoral Fortunes Of Peoples’ Democratic Party (PDP) In April 2011 Elections


Dear Sir: 1. On the March 8, 2011 edition of Thisday Newspaper pages 8&9; writing under the rider-‘Gauging the pre-election mood of Nigerians’-the tabloid gave a 73% “somewhat” or “strongly agreed” with the statement that “President Goodluck Jonathan is doing a good job as a President”.

2,   The Newspaper further stated inter-alia, “currently support for the incumbent president in his role as candidate for 2011 presidential office is strong and cuts across the majority of states, this clearly is raising the bar for the other presidential candidates and raises the question on how will they be able to sway the people towards voting for them in the five weeks that are left before the presidential elections.”

3,   But in a swift reaction to this polling outcome, Mr John Campbell, the American former ambassador to Nigeria wrote: “According to a recent opinion poll in Nigeria, 38.1 percent of  respondents “strongly agree” and 34.9 percent “somewhat agree,” “that Goodluck Jonathan is doing a good job as president.” The poll even shows Jonathan with a one hundred percent positive approval rate in Akwa Ibom state, and an average positive performance rating of about ninety percent in the southern states. His lowest score was in Kano with 22.5 percent, but he had an overall approval rate in the North of sixty percent.
The poll was conducted by This Day, a newspaper that is sympathetic to the Jonathan administration, and Ipsos, an international polling organization under contract to the paper.

I am skeptical that this poll accurately measures Jonathan’s support. Indeed, an approval rating of one hundred percent anywhere stretches credulity. While opinion polls are not unknown in Nigeria, they are not common, either.
Shortly before the 2007 elections, a government cabinet minister came to see me with polling results that ostensibly showed overwhelming support for the governing People’s Democratic Party. In hindsight, the Obasanjo government’s sharing of poll results with the diplomatic community looks like it was part of an orchestrated campaign to try and give credibility to the electoral outcomes despite the massive PDP rigging of the elections. Friends of Nigeria must hope that polling data is not now being used in a similar way before the April 2011 elections.”

4,   In the March 21, 2011 edition front page of Thisday Newspapers and writing under the rider, “Jonathan leads with 60%, PDP may lose four states”, the paper inter-alia asserted that “80% of the polled voters said they would vote for Jonathan (PDP Presidential).”

5,   When asked about the challenges faced in conducting the Poll, the CEO of IPSOS(Sub-Saharan Africa), David Somers asserted that: “ What is challenging in our own opinion is the share mass and size of Nigeria. First and foremost, it’s very large country in terms of space and size and a very complex country in terms of culture, heterogeneous, many different languages and it’s always a difficult place to get to. It’s far away places. So we had the challenge of culture on one hand and the challenge of demographic complexity on the other hand. Also we realized this sort of thing has not been done a lot in Nigeria. So one of the biggest challenges perhaps is that we didn’t have many benchmarks to work on, we didn’t have many comparisons to use when going into interviews. So I will say those were some of the challenges we faced.”

6,    The foreign Polling consultant, however, did not mention how those impediments were overcome: how many different Nigerian languages’ experts were employed for the face to face interviews; how the impassable terrains of the rural  communities were navigated; how many rural communities (where the preponderance of the voters reside) were visited?

7,    The entire exercise was predicated on the statistical random sampling with its universally accepted principles. One of which is that the size of the sample is determined by the optimum number necessary to enable valid inferences to be made about the population. The larger the sample size, the smaller the chance of a random sampling error. It is still opaque to the ordinary Nigerians how a sample size of 11,000 respondents was used to capture over seventy three million (73Million) voters spread across the various geo-political zones in the country.

8,   Furthermore, Probability sampling scheme is one in which every unit in the population has a chance (greater than zero) of being selected in the sample, and this probability can be adequately determined. What is of critical importance here are the criteria were used in determining the 11,000 respondents and was there Equal Probability of Selection (EPS) for all the 73Million registered Nigerian voters?

9,     With the completion of the Voters’ registration exercise in early February, 2011, an initial figure of 63 Million voters and later revision two weeks’ later to 73Million voters was reported by the Independent National Electoral Commission; it is therefore germane for the purpose of enlightening Nigerians the duration for the Polling project by IPSOS and the collation/interpretation of the result.

10,   It is frightening to conjecture that a credible polling project could be conducted in less than a two-week duration for a country with such land mass over 900square kilometers with extremely difficult terrains, unpredictable weather and over 350 ethnic communities with heterogeneous cultures and languages!

11,   It is doubtful if a truly professional and realistic polling endeavor was conducted which could be relied upon with much gusto for a Nation in the circumstances as Nigeria’s.

12,    It is of interest to the Nigerian Public the funding for this project since it was Thisday Newspaper that contracted IPSOS to conduct the survey. How much did it cost and from where did the source of funding come from?

13,   If it was funded by Thisday Newspaper, was it a ‘PRO BONO’ service as part of its Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR)? If yes, being a National project, why was there no collaboration with other Media houses of corporate entities in Nigeria?

14,    It is inconceivable that with the seething anger of the Nigerian Public against the twelve years of profligacy by the ruling party, coupled with the recent celebration of recidivism in Lagos by the chieftains of the same ruling party in loudly welcoming a jailed chieftain from prison; a POP will post remarkable result which is diametrically opposed to the mood of the Nation!

15,   The defense of IPSOS as having 30-year polling experience does not preclude it from sacrificing professionalism for clientele approval (as was the case of Arthur Andersen in the celebrated Halliburton saga)!

16,    It is axiomatic that factual, accurate, balanced and fair reporting are the hallmarks of good journalism and the basis for earning public trust and confidence.

17,   It is therefore of National interest that a thorough investigation be conducted on the professionalism of Thisday Newspaper in projecting the image of Journalism with the utterly untidy Polling project.

18,   I look forward to reading soon from you.
Thank you.
Yours faithfully,

Rotimi Fashakin(Engr.)

To: The President,
Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ),
Festus Okotie-Eboh crescent,

Cc:  The President, Nigerian Guild of Editors
Cc:  The President, Newspapers Proprietors’ Association of Nigeria.


22 comment(s)
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Did Bakare not conduct polls for Buhari under SNG?

Nigerians are nothing but hypocrites. Too criminal minded for my taste. They can lie their way to heaven if its possible. Odumakin should be checked if all is well between him and Buhari.

Bakare conducted similar polls for Buhari here. What was the yardstcik used. There was no noise. During the PDP primaries we saw Nwodo and his group conduct another rented internet survey which showed Atiku far ahead of Jonathan. Nobody raised eye-brows over the issue. Now that Nduka has sent shock waves into the mind of Odumakin, he has started with his old style.

Penning and repenning articles for SR. Instead of going from village to village to sell his green book on War Against Indiscipline. Is Buhari the Editor in Chief of SR now? Nduka would also produce the result of the survey conducted by Bakare for Buhari in court period.

These socalled Nigerians in diaspora out with the gospel according OBAMAs revolution in Libya should leave us alone. Its only those who have never witnessed war that often prays for one daily. As for ACN we have already seen the legacy, they left behind in Akwa Ibom. We dont need a sooth sayer to know who they are.

Nduka is another name for fraud


In fulfilment of an alleged contractual agreement with the promoters of the Jonathan candidacy, This Day newspaper published Tuesday the third instalment of its so-called “Political Trending” titled “How PDP delegates may vote”.

To arrive at its pre-determined conclusion, This Day purportedly interviewed statutory delegates and conducted a political intelligence that gave the yet-to-make-up-his-mind Jonathan a landslide victory in the PDP presidential primary.

However, information available to us shows that This Day neither interviewed any delegate nor conducted any political intelligence. The flamboyant publisher of the newspaper, Nduka Obaigbena, simply conjured up the figures from the comfort of his 10th floor residence at Hilton Hotel, Abuja, to satisfy his pay masters.

The objective of the current This Day campaign for Jonathan is to distort reality, paint a false picture of Jonathan’s acceptability within the PDP and thus create a bandwagon effect for his candidacy. The strategy is to create the impression that Jonathan is winning big across the country and then force the undecided to board the Jonathan train since everyone loves a winner.

This Day game plan is not limited to the survey alone. In the last two weeks, the newspaper has made its front page a Jonathan Campaign notice board, hailing even a non-event as “a game changer” and giving the Jonathan camp a false hope. For example, a few days ago Olusegun Obasanjo gathered his fellow clowns together in Ibadan to hurriedly endorse Jonathan after a national newspaper had published that the irascible former president was no longer enthusiastic about Jonathan. This Day quickly hailed the so-called endorsement of Jonathan by Southwest PDP as another “game changer”.

Habits die hard. This Day is back on a familiar turf. Nigerians have not forgotten how the same newspaper, working under a similar contract with the Yar’Adua Campaign in 2007, prepared the blueprint for the massive rigging of those elections by publishing favourable “exit polls” even before the elections actually took place.

This Day is at it again. Its publisher has made the paper available to the highest bidder. Cash-and-carry pseudo surveys, phoney analyses and concocted intelligence gathering are being offered daily to unsuspecting readers as objective reports in clear violation of the basic ethics of journalism.

But This Day gimmick will not work this time. Nigerians are wiser. They cannot be scammed again. They are familiar with the wiles of a cash-strapped publisher doing desperate things to sustain his extravagant lifestyle even as staff salaries remain unpaid for several months now. No matter how altruistic they try to make it look, the This Day-Jonathan alliance does not serve the best interest of Nigeria. It is an alliance forged in the anvil of convenience, self-interest and crass opportunism. It is a project that is bound to fail.
Jonathan is yet to formally declare an interest in the 2011 race. He is yet to tell Nigerians what he intends to do for them. He is yet to unfold a vision for the country. His performance since taking over nearly seven months ago has been at best lacklustre. So, on what basis did This Day would be delegates hinge their preference for Jonathan? Or are we to believe that these things do not count any more?

Journalism is a noble profession. It is a public trust. And trust is a burden. Its practitioners are expected to commit themselves to the highest ethics of fairness, truth, balance and integrity. It is not a profession for scammers and 419 kingpins desperate to recover a fake six-million dollar debt from the government. Nigerian journalism must urgently rid itself of the unworthy elements within its rank.

If This Day continues like this, one does not have to be a prophet to know that it is destined to go the way of its forerunner, This Week. It is this sort of wuruwuru that led to the untimely death of its off-shoot in South Africa, a country where things are done differently and with a modicum of decency and professionalism.

Wow!! Nigerian Defence

Wow!! Nigerian Defence Academy has Masters'.
programs? Since when? That's how u will have just fooled that do not know. NDA is only for military cadets, 5-yr Bachelor programs and doesn't even include Law and Medicine. And there are no female cadets.


Thisday has been widely criticized on this online news reporting.I believe they have their opinion to give in the press and that is acceptable.

@Onu don't mind them !!!

@Onu, don't mind them. Then wan throw "san' san' into your gari" that you hope to drink for the next 4 years. We don hear you. At least you are sincere and how I wish Deri would be that fortright instead of making the "ablutions" like a cat on S/R. hahahahaha!!!

Thisday is soiling its name

Nduka Obaigbena is a businessman but i believe everyone should have ethical standards. I doubt that a poll of 11000 people in what will have been urban areas only, cannot represent the wishes of 73million people. It can be likened to taking a poll of approximately 2 people to represent the wishes of 10000 people it is STATISTICALLY WRONG!!!! Thisday is a DISGRACE!!!!!

Just for your information,

Just for your information, Buhari's wife is alive and kicking, she was on the front page of several newspapers in the country two weeks ago, however unlike the penchant by the others, she is not building an hegemony with the tax payer's money by throwing her weight around, she has her Beauty Parlour in Kaduna where she runs her private Business ( yes, she is a beautician by training and has a masters degree in international relation from the Nigerian Defence Academy. By the way, is it a problem to you and your ilks that Buhari is a muslim? it is your types that Nigeria does not need, you are a worse bigot than the person you are accusing. can you employ a Muslim as your personal Driver and wait for it, cook? Buhari's Cook and personal Driver of over a decade are practicing Christians and have no inhibitions whatsoever in their religious belief.

Re: ThisDay Poll

Thisday newspaper is entitled to conduct and publicise the result of her opinion poll and what about it? We are fed worse propaganda by The Nation,The Sun and co without anybody complaining. Enough of this south western indoctrination! I buy any paper of my choice and if I dislike their modus, nothing stops me from withdrawing my patronage.BUT IN ORDER NOT TO KILL URSELF OVER NEWS REPORTS ALWAYS READ IN BETWEEN THE LINES! After all u must balance the human and Nigerian factor. Who is fooling who?

I Shall never buy ThisDay newspaper

As a way of showing my disgust to ThisDay newspaper, I will not buy the dailies anymore. It is my own little way of boycotting the daily for it's action. If we have more people taking actions such as this, Obaigbena will know the implications of what he had done and is doing. He will definitely stop making a fool of himself by trying to justify his actions.

All enemies of Nigeria will be shown!

Time of reckoning is here for

Time of reckoning is here for Nduka and his rag sheet.

Cash-and-Carry Thisday

The concocted Thisday polls shows the extent of depravity in that uncoscionable organization, ready to sell its ethics to the highest bidder. If Joanthan were popular he would not be addressing scanty and rented crowds at his rallies. On the other hand, Buhari attracted huge crowds everywhere he went including Port Harcourt. Jonathan's security men killed innocent Nigerians to save Jonathan the embarrassment of addressing another empty arena. Jonathan needs more than the likes of Convict Bode George, Obasanjo or Thisday newspaper to rig the elections. Nigerians are ready for the PDP criminals!

100% purchased!!!

If the incompetent and corrupt Jonathan were popular, most of the comments here will support him.


I quite agree with your submission of the recent poll survey by the so called IPSO. Random selection of 11,000 respondent in an homogeneous, diverse, multi ethnic and multi religious country like Nigeri puts a question mark on the findings of the company. Secondly, carry out this exercise without other development agencies, NGOs, puts a another doubt in the integrity of the result. What if the sampled poll are peopled by the rulling party supporters/sympathisers?
Am specifically suprised at the outcome of their fainding in my State (Oyo) where a paltry 17% was alloted to the ACN Governorship Candidate and 34% to the incubent PDP Governor and the AP Candidate about 24%

It is Laughable because if you feel the paulse of the generality of the people, 7 out of every 10 wants Akala out of the Agodi Government House and the Broom revolution of the ACN everywhere. If the election is conducted today and its free and fair, Akala cannot score 20% of the total votes. His administration has made the state poorer than he met it. Hes morally corrupt and has nothing upstairs to offer the people of Oyo State.


I quite agree with your submission of the recent poll survey by the so called IPSO. Random selection of 11,000 respondent in an homogeneous, diverse, multi ethnic and multi religious country like Nigeri puts a question mark on the findings of the company. Secondly, carry out this exercise without other development agencies, NGOs, puts a another doubt in the integrity of the result. What if the sampled poll are peopled by the rulling party supporters/sympathisers?
Am specifically suprised at the outcome of their fainding in my State (Oyo) where a paltry 17% was alloted to the ACN Governorship Candidate and 34% to the incubent PDP Governor and the AP Candidate about 24%

It is Laughable because if you feel the paulse of the generality of the people, 7 out of every 10 wants Akala out of the Agodi Government House and the Broom revolution of the ACN everywhere. If the election is conducted today and its free and fair, Akala cannot score 20% of the total votes. His administration has made the state poorer than he met it. Hes morally corrupt and has nothing upstairs to offer the people of Oyo State.

Nigeria did not die in 38yrs she will not die in 4 years of GEJ

If Nigeria did not die under the 38year direct and indirect rules of the Born-To-Rules, she will not die during the next 4 years it shall be led by a fellow from the zone that has been laying the golden eggs.
Enough of these crooked theories against PDP and by extension GEJ. This tomfoolery game by some people must stop now!

not only this day

Again, a stark reminder of the decay in our system of which the media is part of. When Ibru wife stole 191billion naira. it was never reported in the Guardian newspaper with strap line...'conscience nurtured by truth'.
it was so heart breaking to know that the wife of a man with a newspaper that boast of the best set of journalist could partake in such crime.

The industry still remained bugged with corruption and unimaginative leadership which have no clue on the dangers lurking the industry's future along the electronic age.
Their staff are ran like the Nigerian enterprise. They are poor, corrupt and cannot be independent of their owners.
One would have expected them to use the interest being generated by election to increase circulation, and awareness by putting together a rich reporting format specially for this election by showcasing most of the candidates so the pool of diverse audience can be a source to persuade many parties for more advertising!.
Rather it is the opposite. PDP bought so many of them over, forgetting that their real market is Nigerians. They can stop to play safe and ask what if PDP loose this election?
it is also shameful that given the fact many Journalist were killed in 12 years of PDP, they still chose to have the slave mindset relationship with them. One would have expected them to gag the aspirant and government to find the killers! or ask the government for more assurances that they will not be kidnapped as they were sensationally snatched or nicked in the eastern part of Nigeria.

You can hardly see Buhari, Shekaru, Ribadu campaign coverage in Vanguard and many others Newspapers who are either anti other party or Pro PDP .

vanguard have more paid advert for PDP GOV and aspirants. This guys paid a fortune for those pages out of money stolen from tax payers.(
This are front page and center spread ads that cost alot.
The news media are so stupid not to know that given this time, everyone that can generate publicity is the money giver! whether it is ACN,CPC,ACCORD,PDP,ETC. ride the wave of interest and the election crowd!

How many papers had serious long interview with aspirants asking them structured questions on the how they intend to bring about progress in Nigeria...if you all remember the Obama campaign. many newspaper endorsed Obama, in return they got readership with its fan and ads. the opposite is here.

The press must remember all through history how Nigerians have stood for them. They must remain truthful and objective, and not be used to black out information for people who have destroyed the country! they must present everyone view and not use the trust of readership and reliance on them for information to manipulate the electorate.

finally, with example of SR and many more we need create and build more private press institutions . please keep the dream alive if you got it. no effort is small. even if it means having a newspaper in pidgin English!
Our people need information to have a final liberation.

PDP at it again!

The Thisday newspaper has now become an agent the the PDP in trying to deceive the Nigerian public. It's so sad that after 12 unfruitful years, thisday has the audacity to conduct a baseless poll. Shame on Thisday. Shame on PDP. Shame on President GEJ.

Nduka oh Nduka

Nduka is a born pro-establishment character. I believe he has gotten his fingers burnt this time around as he will definitely soon find himself in a place he detests.

The Fraud Called Thisday

Thisday newspapers has become a fraud! When they are not busy organizing and dishing out questionable awards, they are engaged in the contraption of despicable opinion polls. All the banks and bankers Thisday celebrated with dubious awards are today in serious trouble with the bankers themselves being in jail,being tried in the courts or on the run! I tell you, Thisday is a fraud!

Bakare is trick by Islamist Buhari to power, BB ends ABACHA/DIYA

First petition the tricks that religious fundamentalist, Buhari, is foisting on gullible Nigerians by trying to use Bakare to clinch the presidency. Buhari said Sharia law must be implementeed all over Nigeria. Buhari said muslims must vote for only muslims. All these are on record. No matter any outcome, an Islamic zealot like Buhari cannot be president of Nigeria. Religion is like opium. Buhari is hiding his widely-publicised Islamic fundamentalism now. He must demonstrate and practice religious fundamentalism anywhere he is in control. That's why Buhari can never work with Bakare for long.
To these people hustling for Buhari because of gainig political power through Bakare, note that Buhari only intends to ride to power through Bakare. The Buharis do not believe that a Christian is competent enough to preside over Nigeria.

For a test, Nigerian women voters must ask this question: where is Buhari's wife? These days it is only hard-core Islamic fundamentalists like Buhari that hide their wives from public view. Sambo is a muslim, married to one of the most pretty, outspoken and hardworking women in Nigeria.
Buhari is a muslim. Where is Buhari's wife?

What do opinion polls do?

There's a current debate in UK about whether opinion polls reflect opinion or are simply used to influence and direct the intention of voters.

compromised This Day newspaper

This Day has been bought over by the PDP, we need to boycott such newspapers that have been compromised.
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