Ukraine on the Eve of Local Elections: expert regional poll

The expert regional poll “Ukraine on the Eve of Local Elections” was conducted from October 15th to October 22nd, 2020. The goal of the poll was to understand how experts evaluate the performance of governmental institutions, local governments, and the features of the 2020 local elections. 79 experts participated in the poll.

  • The majority of institutions that experts evaluated scored low on mitigating the COVID-19 pandemic. Mayors (2.5/5) and governors (2.3/5) received the highest scores.
  • The experts believe that the pandemic “will make it more difficult for the election commissions to function” (71%). The majority of experts also note that “turnout will decrease (fewer people will show up to vote)” (68%). The notion that is most contested by experts is that “the election agenda has changed – national questions have become more important than the local ones” (30%).
  • Regional experts note that authorities to do not communicate the decisions in a clear manner. The mayors scored 2.8 out 5 – a relatively high score. The Ministry of Health scored 2.6, and the Cabinet of Ministers scored 2.2.
  • Among the issues that may potentially contribute to the mass protests in cities, the fraud during the local elections was the likeliest cause, according to experts. Some experts believe that protests against the initiative of the government to end the war in Donbas are likely.
  • The majority of experts note that unfair campaigning and advertising practices have been often employed during the campaigning process. Further, the use of the administrative rouse, fakes and disinformation about opponents, as well as bribery of voters were widely employed.
  • Experts believe that parties and candidates are the ones who perpetuate election fraud practices. At the same time, the heads of enterprises, institutions, organizations and mayors also contributed to the issue.

SURVEY RESULTS

  1. How would you rate the performance of the following subjects related to the mitigation of the consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic IN THE PAST THREE MONTHS?

 

1 – very inefficient

2 – mostly inefficient

3 - mediocre

4 – mostly efficient

5 – very efficient

Undecided

Average score

President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelenskyi

34,2

35,4

20,3

5,1

2,5

2,5

2,0

Ministry of Health

24,1

43,0

26,6

5,1

0,0

1,3

2,1

Ministry of the Internal Affairs

25,3

40,5

19,0

10,1

0,0

5,1

2,1

Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine

27,8

38,0

22,8

7,6

0,0

3,8

2,1

Verkhovna Rada (parliament) of Ukraine

30,4

31,6

30,4

6,3

0,0

1,3

2,1

The Head of the Oblast Administration (governor) of your oblast (region)

30,4

21,5

22,8

13,9

3,8

7,6

2.3

Mayor of your city

29,1

19,0

26,6

16,5

5,1

3,8

2,5

  1. For the first time, the elections in Ukraine are taking place during a dangerous pandemic and lockdown. Please state your opinion about the possible impact of the coronavirus pandemic on the local elections process. 

 

Most probably, yes

Most probably, no

Undecided

The campaigning has moved online

39,2

48,1

12,7

Turnout will decrease (fewer people will show up to vote)

68,4

22,8

8,9

It will be more difficult for the election commissions to function

70,9

20,3

8,9

The election agenda has changed – national questions have become more important than the local ones

30,4

46,8

22,8

Current mayors have gained an advantage

41,8

44,3

13,9

Candidates who volunteered during the lockdown will gain popularity

38,0

36,7

25,3

Candidates who represent businesses and provided assistance during the lockdown will gain popularity

40,5

39,2

20,3

3. How would you rate the performance of the following subjects related to the communication of decisions with the public IN THE PAST THREE MONTHS?

 

1 – very inefficient

2 – mostly inefficient

3 - mediocre

4 – mostly efficient

5 – very efficient

Undecided

Average score

President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelenskyi

31,6

34,2

17,7

3,8

6,3

6,3

2,1

Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine

22,8

36,7

26,6

6,3

0,0

7,6

2,2

Ministry of Health

19,0

25,3

38,0

11,4

5,1

1,3

2,6

The Head of the Oblast Administration (governor) of your oblast (region)

24,1

27,8

26,6

7,6

5,1

7,6

2,3

Mayor of your city

17,7

22,8

30,4

20,3

7,6

1,3

2,8

  1. What causes may potentially contribute to mass protests and demonstrations in your region in OCTOBER-DECEMBER 2020?

 

1 –will definitely not take place

2 – will most likely not take place

3 -

The probability of the event taking place and not taking place is roughly the same

4 – will most likely take place

5 – will definitely take place

Undecided

Lockdown measures

20,3

29,1

29,1

15,2

2,5

3,8

Poor mitigation of the COVID-19 pandemic by the authorities

20,3

43,0

25,3

8,9

0,0

2,5

Increase in the price of utilities

10,1

29,1

39,2

15,2

2,5

3,8

Political persecution of opposition parties by the authorities

22,8

34,2

22,8

12,7

2,5

5,1

Support by citizens for certain politicians or political organizations

8,9

32,9

36,7

16,5

1,3

3,8

Protection of civil liberties from the incursion by the government

12,7

26,6

39,2

13,9

5,1

2,5

The initiative by the government to end the war in Donbas

12,7

22,8

36,7

19,0

6,3

2,5

Fraud during local elections

8,9

31,6

31,6

20,3

5,1

2,5

  1. Please evaluate the frequency of use of the following ways to influence the outcome of elections in your region (city)?

 

Often used

Sometimes used

Rarely used

Not aware of the issue

Bribery of voters (money, goods, services)

41,8

43,0

3,8

11,4

Unfair campaigning and advertising practices

64,6

27,8

0,0

7,6

The use of the administrative resource (campaigning at workplace, the involvement of communal and state-owned enterprises in the campaign, the use of authority to obstruct the campaign of the opponents)

53,2

35,4

6,3

5,1

Voter intimidation

6,3

17,7

41,8

34,2

The intimidation of political opponents and candidates

3,8

29,1

40,5

26,6

Pressure on the media

11,4

22,8

26,6

39,2

The spread of fakes and disinformation about opponents

49,4

36,7

3,8

10,1

The bribery of the election commissions to impact the vote counting process

16,5

22,8

11,4

49,4

The application of pressure on the election commissions to impact the vote counting process

13,9

19,0

16,5

50,6

The use of “clones” (non-electable candidates who have the same last name as the opponents)

17,7

30,4

26,6

25,3

The interference of foreign governments with the election process 

8,9

13,9

25,3

51,9

  1. Please indicate how often the following subjects of the election process have employed fraud to affect the outcome of the elections.

 

Often

Sometimes

No such conduct

Undecided

Parties, deputy candidates

38,0

32,9

2,5

26,6

Governors

16,5

38,0

5,1

40,5

Mayors

16,5

35,4

6,3

41,8

Heads of enterprises, institutions, organizations (hospitals, schools)

12,7

50,6

5,1

31,6

Heads of security services (police, SSU, representatives of the Prosecutor General’s Office)

6,3

22,8

19,0

51,9

Local businessmen (not participating candidates)

7,6

34,2

10,1

48,1

Criminal gangs

8,9

17,7

7,6

65,8

 

List of experts who participated in the poll

  1. Anatolii Boyko
  2. Anatolii Stoyan
  3. Andriy Tokarskii
  4. Anzhela Kardynal
  5. Anna Murlykina
  6. Anna Osypchuk
  7. Anna Chaikovska
  8. Artem Konovalov
  9. Barannykov Serhii
  10. Berezuk Kateryna
  11. Brynza Yakiv
  12. Valerii Bolhan
  13. Vivchar Iryna
  14. Vita Dumanska
  15. Vitalii Zuzin
  16. Vishtaluk Oleh
  17. Hazhur Maryna
  18. Hanna Kolomiets
  19. Heorhii Byanov
  20. Hud Svitlana
  21. Hunchenko Serhii
  22. Hurtovenko Denys
  23. Danko Taras
  24. Dmytro Bulah
  25. Dmytro Cheretun
  26. Evhen Kuzmychov
  27. Yelyzaveta Lirska
  28. Zotkina Natalya
  29. Ihor Bychkov
  30. Ihor Dotsyak
  31. Ihor Zots
  32. Inna Eschenko
  33. Iryna Zhuk
  34. Iryna Lyahul
  35. Ismailov Karen
  36. Kalenska Mariia
  37. Kyryla Zakharov
  38. Kovalenko Kristina
  39. Kovalchuk Serhii
  40. Kuryanov Evhen
  41. Kuts Yehor
  42. Leonid Shtekel
  43. Maksym Dolzhenko
  44. Maksym Kovalyk
  45. Maksym Cherkashyn
  46. Matvii Dukh
  47. Nataliia Morozova
  48. Nataliia Noritsina
  49. Nataliia Pyvovarova
  50. Nataliia Yakovleva
  51. Nataliia Chermoshentseva
  52. Nataliia Shalnova
  53. Novikova Svitlana
  54. Ohorodnyk Serhii
  55. Oksana Halkevych
  56. Oleh Konotoptsev
  57. Oleksandr Halyas
  58. Oleksandr Korenkov
  59. Oleksandr Chumak
  60. Oleksandra Fadeyeva
  61. Oleksandra Schukina
  62. Olena Karchevska
  63. Olha Klymko
  64. Petro Hois
  65. Piven Natalya
  66. Potiomkin Serhii
  67. Roman Serduk
  68. Serhii Zhyzhko
  69. Suleimanov Ibrahim
  70. Tetyana Bidnyak
  71. Tetyana Kovaliova
  72. Fedotova Andrii
  73. Yuliya Horodchanina
  74. Yuliya Konotoptseva
  75. Yuriy Khrystenzen
  76. The expert preferred to remain anonymous
  77. The expert preferred to remain anonymous
  78. The expert preferred to remain anonymous

Please indicate your occupation

 

Number of responses

Activist

40

Expert, analyst, scientist

30

Journalist

14

Other

16