Strained Relationship with the Federal Govt and Unemployment are high in the minds of survey participants!


Strained Relationship with the Federal Govt and Unemployment are high in the minds of survey participants!*


We recently conducted an opinion poll primarily targeting Tigrawot. The public poll was developed by and was conducted online between August 11 and 26, 2020.  This is our first poll and hence many caveats, including the obvious in that respondents were those who have accessed and participated in the NorthStarTrbune online survey, and almost exclusively men (a lot of work cut out for us all) and not necessarily a reflection of the general population eligible to vote. Nevertheless, it gives a glimpse of public opinion among those with access to online media. And it shows Tigrai is truly of diverse opinion, at least when it comes to politics. 

The following is just a descriptive summary of the opinion poll, and more analysis (for instance response to the choice of party, or priority issue by geography and education) will soon follow.  We are providing you with the first and preliminary results. More polls on the debate and other important issues will soon follow. We really appreciate those who participated in the first public opinion and we encourage others to do the same and spread the word wide. We know your time is valuable and we promise to keep the survey nifty and relevant.

A summary of the Tigrai Election 2020 Public Poll I

Tegaru from all corners of the world participated in the public poll. The highest percentage of participants were from Tigrai (32.4%), followed by residents in Addis Ababa (21.5%), North America (18.5%), and Europe (15.2%). There were also participants from Australia (4%), other countries in Africa (2.7%), other parts of Ethiopia (1.8%), and Asia (1.5%). The gender distribution of participants was 91.8% males and 8.2% females. All poll participants were 18 years and above. The overwhelming majority (76.4%) were between and 25 and 44 years old.  Regarding the educational level of participants, they were highly educated with 32.0%, 46.3%, and 15.2% having college, masters, and doctoral degrees, respectively.

Participants were asked to pick top three issues facing Tigrai today. The top issues selected by participants were: strained relationship with the federal government (78.3%), lack of good governance in Tigrai (67.7%),  no peace no war with Eritrea (60.4%), lack of economic opportunities in Tigrai (48.0%), lack of peace with Amhara state (27.8%), and 8% wrote other issues outside the list provided.

Respondents were asked if they will vote in the upcoming 2020 election in Tigrai. The response was 44.4% yes, 43.8% no, and 11.8% “Don’t know”. These figures reflect the geographic distribution of respondents as participants outside the country won’t vote.

Poll participants were also asked to select the top five important issues the parties or candidates competing in the election should address. The top two issues were unemployment (88.2%) and peace and security (85.7%).    The following issues also received more than majority votes: autonomous Tigrai (69.7%), representative government (60.3%), and urban land policy (57.3). The distribution of other pressing matters were: rural land issue (47.3%), women rights (31.5%), and the opening of Tigrai – Addis Ababa roads (12.1%).

When participants were asked whom they plan to vote, only 35.7% indicated they intend to vote for the ruling party, the TPLF. Salsay Woyane (27.1%) and NeTsanet (23.2%) were close second and third. The distribution of the remaining candidates were: Baytona (5.0%), independent candidates (2.7%), Assimba (0.8%), and others (5.4%).  

 *   Valid respondents, n = 332


  1. Good exercise given the time and financial constraints. It provides a good picture of the issues that need to be adressed. As indicated in the text, however, the sample is biased and difficult to use it as a predictor for election results.

    • Thanks for recognizing our modest effort. Your feedback will sustain us. As you noted, and we made it clear in the caveat, indeed the survey has limitations and is not meant to predict the outcome nor claim to capture a robust representative of the electoral population. Just a glimpse into that. Please continue to follow us and share your feedback.

  2. It is a good start. It would be helpful to indicate the total number of respondents. The percentages may not make much sense if we don’t know the denominator.

  3. This statement looks vague and irrelevant.
    “Respondents were asked if they will vote in the upcoming 2020 election in Tigrai. The response was 44.4% yes, 43.8% no, and 11.8% “Don’t know”.”
    These figures reflect the geographic distribution of respondents as participants outside the country won’t vote.

  4. This is an insult to science, theis amaturish media is simply trying to imposing its own childish wish .Two weeks is not too long, 90% of the vote will be secured by TPLF, guaranteed.

  5. A good start. Thank you. The article stressed correctly that the participants of the poll were not representatives of the real voting population. This bias should be emphasized strongly, to avoid any misunderstanding since the actual results of the coming election most likely will be different from the result of this poll

  6. I am proud that we have a very concerned, committed and skillful Tegaru like you!! This is my first time to see your website and product and thank you for that. I hope you will also use such and other means in raising other peace and development issues for discussion in the future.

  7. Thank you for your effort in collecting some poll numbers. However, as stated above and alluded in your description, the vote will likely produce a very different result. I am especially surprised that Baytona came out at 5% while Salisay Weyane came out at 27% – may be I wasn’t following politics too closely but those numbers seem extremely skewed. Also, I will be surprised if Hiwehhat gets less than 70% of the popular vote given their strong base in rural and urban Tigiray. The opinion poll should also have removed the opinions from those who are not illegible to vote, such as those of us who reside abroad, who may have a different understanding of situations on the ground in Tigiray and who will not matter in the vote anyway since they will not vote. Lastly, I suggest that you conduct another poll a day or two before the election for a more accurate result – just a thought…

    • Thanks Liul for your feedback. I think we stated and clearly you mentioned the limitations. We are not yet in a position to predict the election, so we won’t even venture into that. Hopefully few years from now we will get there. Yes, we are conducting another survey: check around Poll 2 just out. Again we won’t be making any claims of prediction, association or correlation: too early for that. Depending on the question, opinion from those who claim to reside in Tigrai and intend to vote may agree or differ from response from all poll participants but when it comes to overall party choice, not much. We hope to have articles looking more into breakdowns and detailed results from the data.

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