Poll 33 Evaluation of the Performance of PLC and PA, Corruption, Attitudes Regarding new Legislative Elections, Local Elections, and Oslo Peace Agreement ,
3-6 June 1998
These are the results of opinion poll #33, conducted by the Center for Palestine Research & Studies, between 3-6 June 1998. The poll deals with evaluation of the performance of PLC and PA, corruption, attitudes regarding new legislative elections, and Oslo peace agreement. The total sample size of this poll is 1330 from Palestinians 18 years and older, of which 802 in the West Bank and 528 in the Gaza Strip. The margin of error is + 3% and the non-response rate is 3%.
1) Decrease in the percentage of positive evaluation of the performance of the PLC, Cabinet, and Presidency
- Positive evaluation of the performance of the PLC reached 45% in this poll compared to 49% in a CPRS March 1998 poll, 51% in December 1997, and 42% in September 1997.
- As in previous surveys, positive evaluation of the PLC is lower in the Gaza Strip (39%) compared to the West Bank (48%), among residents of cities (40%) compared to residents of towns and villages (53%), among men (35%) compared to women (53%), among refugees (39%) compared to non-refugees (49%), among holders of BA degree (28%) compared to holders of primary school certificate (52%), among students (32%) compared to housewives (56%), and among supporters of the PFLP (26%) compared to supporters of Fateh (56%).
- One reason for the poor showing of the PLC is the belief among a majority of Palestinians that the Council's performance in the area of issuing new legislation has been poor. Only 25% believed that the work of the PLC in issuing 14 proposed laws was satisfactory, while 54% believed it to be insufficient. It is also noticeable that the man in the street blamed both the legislative and the executive authorities for the lack of more unified and applied Palestinian laws in the West Bank and Gaza. About 48% blamed the two sides, while 16% blamed the PLC alone and 22% blamed the executive authority alone.
- The Palestinian Presidency received the highest positive rating reaching 71%, followed by the Police and security services (67%), the Cabinet (53%), the judicial authority (48%), the PLC (45%), and finally the Palestinian opposition (41%).
- These results indicate a continued decline in the positive evaluation of the performance of the cabinet from 61%, six months ago, to 59% three months ago, to 53% in this poll. The results also show a decline in the percentage of positive evaluation of the judicial authority from 53%, three months ago, to the current level of 48%. Moreover, the percentages of positive evaluation of both, the presidency and the security forces, have each decreased by three percentage points within a period of three months. .
2) Two-Thirds Believe Corruption Exists in the PA
- Over 65% agree that corruption exists in the institutions and agencies of the Palestinian Authority, while only 23% do not agree. The results show an increase in the percentage of those who believe in the existence of corruption form 61% in March 1998 and 63% in November 1997. About a year ago, the percentage was 57%. Meanwhile, 55% expressed the belief that corruption will increase or remain the same in the future. This percentage stood at 50% about three months ago.
- The belief in the existence of corruption increases among men (74%) compared to women (56%), among holders of BA degree (90%) compared to illiterates (46%), among students (78%) compared to housewives (53%), among those with monthly income of less JD900 (81%) compared to those with income of less than JD300 (60%), and among supporters of Hamas (83%) compared to those who support Fateh (54%).
3) A Majority Supports Holding New Legislative Elections in 1999
- A majority of 58% supported the holding of new legislative elections in May 1999 after the end of the transitional period of self-rule. Only 23% supported an extension of mandate for the current PLC, while 12% opposed both the new elections and the extension of mandate.
- Support for holding new elections is stronger among residents of the Gaza Strip (61%) compared to those residing in the West Bank (55%), among men (62%) compared to women (53%), among those between 23-27 years of age (60%) compared to those over 53 years of age (49%), among the holders of BA degree (69%) compared to illiterates (41%), and among students (68%) compared to housewives (52%). The holding of new legislative elections finds almost equal support among supporters of Fateh (61%) and Hamas (59%).
- If new legislative elections are held, only 36% intend to vote for one or more of the current members of the PLC while another 36% intend to vote for new candidates and 20% do not intend to participate in elections at all.
- Members of the PLC who received the greatest support from their constituencies include Haidar Abdul Shafi, Abed Rabbo Owen, Mohammad Hijazi, Sulieman al-Roumi, Sa'di al-Kurunz, Ibrahim Habbash, Freih Abu Medein, Nabil Sha'ath, Abdul Karim Abu Salah, and Imad al-Falouji in the Gaza Strip, and Hanan Ashrawi, Ahmad Qurie, Salah al-Ta'mari, Bishara Doud, Jamal al-Shati, Azam al-Ahmad,Abbas Zaki, Abdul Jawad Salih, Hasan Khraisha, and al-Tayyib Abdul Rahim.
4) The Street is Divided Over the Immediate Holding of Local elections
- Only 48% support the immediate holding of local elections while 45% support the postponement of local elections until after Israel carry out further redeployment from the West Bank. Support for immediate elections increases in the areas of Tulkarm (70%), Khanyounis (60%), and Jabalya (54%) and decreases in the areas of Deir al-Balah (42%), Bethlehem (43%), and Jenin (43%). Support decreases also among residents of refugee camps (42%) compared to cities (50%), among illiterates (39%) compared to holders of BA degree (65%), and among housewives (43%) compared to professionals (69%). The levels of support are not very different among supporters of Fateh (49%) and Hamas (45%).
5. Decrease in the Level of Support for Oslo to 62%
- Findings show a drop of support for the Oslo agreement form 67% in March 1998 to 62% in the current poll. Opposition to Oslo increased from 29% to 33% during the same period. Support for Oslo increases in the areas of Jenin (74%) and Rafah (70%) and decreases in the areas of Ramallah and Hebron (55%). Support for Olso also increased in villages and towns (67%) compared to refugee camps (58%), among women (69%) compared to men (54%), among nonrefugees (65%) compared to refugees (59%), among illiterates (77%) compared to holders of BA degrees (38%), among housewives (72%) compared to students (49%), among those with income of less than JD300 (66%) compared to those with income of more than JD900 (51%), and among supporters of Fateh (77%) compared to Hamas (37%).
6. Political Affiliation: Decrease in Support for Fateh; Increase in Support for Hamas
- Support for Fateh dropped from 46% in March 1998 to 42% in this poll while support for Hamas increased from 9% to 12 % during the same period. Support for all Islamists reached 17% while support for the national opposition did not exceed 3%. The non-affiliated stood at 37%....More