Only 18 percent of citizens supports the current Government without its reconstruction

Only 18 percent of citizens supports the current Government without its reconstruction

Almost half of the citizens believe that Montenegro is going in the wrong way and that early parliamentary elections should be scheduled. These are the results of this year’s second survey “Political Public Opinion of Montenegro” conducted by the Center for Democracy and Human Rights (CEDEM). Complete results are available here.

Almost a quarter of citizens (24.6 percent) believe that Montenegro is on the right path, while almost every second citizen (46.8 percent) believes that the current path is wrong.

“There is a significantly higher number of citizens who think that Montenegro is moving in the wrong direction compared to the number of citizens who believe that they are moving in the right one.” For more than 10 years, we have almost never had such a bad assessment when it comes to the direction in which Montenegro is moving,” said CEDEM director Milena Bešić.

She said that “dissatisfaction with the work of the Government is very pronounced and that the assessment of the work of the Government is at its lowestest since 2007”, this is coming from a finding that the majority of citizens are not satisfied with the performance of the Government of Zdravko Krivokapić so far. “Every other citizen is “very” or “mostly dissatisfied” with the work of the Government, while only 20% are “very” or “mostly satisfied” adding that compared to the previous survey, six months ago, there is again a visible decline in satisfaction.

Of the 12 ministries in Zdravko Krivokapic’s government, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (18.7 percent), the Ministry of Education, Science, Culture and Sports (18.4 percent), and the Ministry of Justice, Human and Minority Rights (16 percent) received the worst grades.

In the last half of the year, the average grade of all ministries has been declining from 28.8 to 26.5 percent.

On the other hand, speaking about the growth of support of about 15 percent for the Ministry of Finance and Social Welfare, Bešić assessed that “it is obvious that the recently presented programs of Minister Spajić have resulted in greater support.” She assessed that these programs also contributed to the growth in the evaluation of the Ministry of Economic Development, headed by Minister Jakov Milatović.

The percentage of those who are dissatisfied (37.9 percent) with the efforts of the Government and relevant institutions in the fight against the coronavirus pandemic is higher than the percentage of those who are satisfied with these efforts (about 30%).

When asked which solution to the political crisis they would support first, Bešić said that “22 percent of citizens believe that the only solution is early elections, while 18 percent are for the current government without its reconstruction.” Only 16.9 percent are of the opinion that a completely new government should formed by the current majority parties, and 10.5 percent are for the option of a minority government with the support of the DPS and its partners, while 3.6 percent are for the option of a minority government without the support of the DPS and their partners.”

31.7 percent of the respondents are of the opinion that early parliamentary elections should be organized as soon as possible, 12.9 percent of them think that they should be held at the same time as the presidential elections, 26.2 percent think that no elections should be called, and 29.1 percent did not have a stand on this issue.

Bešić said that a quarter of the citizens believe that the elections should not be organized ahead of time, but that almost half of the opinion of the citizens is that they should be called ahead of time.

“Compared to the previous research, the number of those who think that they should be organized as soon as possible or at the same time as the presidential one has increased. “Elections would mean a change in the situation we have today, and that is the state of socio-political crisis,” Bešić said.

If the parliamentary elections were to be held next week, at the turnout of 71 percent of voters, the largest percentage of committed respondents (30.5 percent) would vote for DPS, 20.4 percent for DF, 19.3 percent for the Democrats 19.3, 6.2 percent for URA, 6.1 percent for The Bosniak Party, 4.3 percent for the Social Democratic Party, while other parties are around or below the threshold.

“We can conclude that the political parties currently in power are either growing or retaining their electorate, while the opposite situation is true for political parties in opposition, with the exception of the growing SDP,” Bešić said, adding that the Bosniak Party and the Albanian Alternative are retaining their electorate.

If Prime Minister Zdravko Krivokapić would form his own political party, 1.9 percent would “probably” vote for it, 3.3 percent would “Certainly” vote for it, 12.5 percent “Possibly”, while she said that almost half of the respondents would not vote for it – 49.2 percent.

“We see that just over five percent of respondents would “Probably” and “Certainly” vote for it. Therefore, we have a slight increase in those who would vote for this party, if it were formed,” said Bešić.

Regardless of personal preferences, the largest number of respondents (32.8 percent) believe that the DPS would win the elections, 17.3 percent believe that it would be the DF, 9.8 percent the Democrats, and all other political parties’ 8.7 percent cumulatively, while 30.3 percent of respondents responded with “Do not know”.

When asked if they would vote the same way as in last year’s parliamentary elections, 58.5 percent said that they would, 12.5 percent said they would not, while 29 percent said they do not know or are not sure.

The majority of citizens support the idea of holding elections in all municipalities on the same day (48.6 percent), 14.3 percent do not support this idea, while 37.1 percent do not know or did not have a position on this issue.

When it comes to institutions, the Serbian Orthodox Church enjoys the greatest amount of trust among them (47.3%), followed by education (47.2%) and health (45.9%) systems and the Delegation of the European Union in Podgorica (44.5%).

On the other hand, the State Prosecution institution (21.8 percent), political parties (13.9 percent) and the Montenegrin Orthodox Church (10.1 percent) hold the least amount of trust among the citizens. Confidence in the State Prosecution institution has fallen by 10 percent since the June CEDEM poll, while it has fallen by about seven percent for political parties.

Since 2014, the lowest level of trust in political institutions has been recorded.

Assessing that the average ratings of politicians are quite low, Bešić added that the highest average score was given to Parliament Speaker Aleksa Bečić (2.50), followed by Montenegrin President Milo Đukanović (2.35), Deputy Prime Minister Dritan Abazović (2.23) and Prime Minister Zdravko Krivokapić (2.19).

“The key findings of this research indicate towards the state of apathy in society which show that substantial, positive changes are needed in the political life and the public discourse in Montenegro,” concluded Bešić.

Program manager at CEDEM, Marko Pejović, said that from 2014 to 2020 there was a decline, but that “a significant part of supporters of the current government expressed their support for Montenegro’s membership in the EU, so today we measure 70 percent of citizens’ support for the membership.” This is also the largest percentage of those who support Montenegro’s membership in NATO.

When it comes to who should Montenegro rely upon in terms of foreign policy, the number of citizens who believe that it should rely on the EU is almost 20 percent higher.

Almost every fourth citizen thinks that the dynamics of EU accession will slow down significantly a year after the change of government (24.9 percent), while only every fifth (20.2 percent) thinks that Montenegro has accelerated its path to the EU.

Almost every second citizen supports NATO membership, and Pejović pointed out that only in the last year, there has been an increase in support of about 10 percent.

Pejović emphasized that “almost 40 percent of citizens are afraid when it comes to “Europe Now”, “Montenegro Now” and “Marshall Plan” programs because they believe that they can have harmful consequences for the economy and that they are not realistic.” Almost an equal number of citizens unconditionally support these programs.

If a census were to be held at this time, Pejović said that citizens would ethnically/nationally declare themselves in the same way as in the previous survey.

“44.7 percent of respondents would vote as Montenegrins, 33 percent as Serbs, 7.9 percent as Bosniaks, 5.1 percent as Muslims, 4.6 percent as Albanians, and others.”

1,022 respondents participated in this research which was conducted from 1st to the 11th of December.

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