Three out of five people in Cyprus said Cypriots are “ready to accept” a female president while more than half believe eligible voters abstain from the elections due to lack of trust in politicians.

The results came from an opinion poll published by the Cyprus association of opinion poll and market research enterprises (Sedeak) on Tuesday. The questions concerned the presidential elections, satisfaction with various institutions and the degree of confidence in various professionals among others.

It showed that 60 per cent of the 784 participants believe Cypriots are ready to accept a woman as president of the country, with 38 per cent replying ‘no’ to the same question and two choosing not to reply.

The older generation appeared more hopeful that locals will accept a female president with 73 per cent of participants over 65 replying yes, while just 47 per cent of people aged 18 to 24 responded the same.

More men than women responded in the affirmative, with 63 per cent of males saying a female president could be accepted by society, compared with 57 per cent of women.

The same opinion poll showed 55 per cent of participants believe people abstain from the elections because they do not trust politicians, 38 per cent said people do not believe things will change no matter who is elected while another 29 per cent said people do not vote because of indifference.

Some 20 per cent said there are no candidates who inspire, 11 per cent said people are unsatisfied with the candidates of the political party they support, while 9 per cent chose other reasons and two per cent said they do not know or they do not wish to reply.

It also looked into how polls affect elections, with 57 per cent of participants saying presidential election polls affect “to some degree” people’s choice to vote or not, while 59 per cent said polls partially affect people’s choice of candidate.

While 37 per cent of people said the future elected president will not affect their lives in the next years, a narrow majority, 51 per cent, said who will be elected president will affect their lives.

Under the question ‘Looking at international developments, how optimistic are you about the future of Cyprus?’ people were asked to answer from a scale of 1 to 5, with 1 meaning not optimistic at all and 5 meaning very optimistic. In total, 88 per cent of people chose to answer between 1 to 3, with just nine percent choosing 4 and three per cent choosing 5. Most, 36 per cent, chose number 3, followed by 29 per cent who choose 2, and 23 per cent who said they are not optimistic at all.

Using the same scale, people rated their satisfaction with various institutions with the highest rating going to Gesy and the lowest to public transport. The lowest degree of confidence in professionals was held by politicians, with half of participants choosing 1, while artists had the highest confidence rate followed by doctors and opinion poll companies.

The poll was carried out in April 2022, with phone interviews of 784 people, of whom 39 per cent were in Nicosia, 28 per cent in Limassol, 17 per cent in Larnaca, 11 per cent in Paphos and 6 per cent in Famagusta.

The largest percentage of participants, 38 per cent, concerned people aged 25 to 44, while 30 per cent belonged to the 45 to 64 age group and 20 per cent were over 65. Another 12 per cent were people aged 18 to 24.

Regarding gender representation, 48 per cent of participants were men and 52 per cent were women.

The opinion poll was presented during an event under the umbrella of International Market Research Day, which is celebrated every year on May 2 with various events by national professional associations and supported by the International Organisation of Market Researchers (Esomar).

The first opinion poll in Cyprus was carried out in November 1980 under the auspices of Dr George Vasiliou which among others looked into whether people intended to vote in the then parliamentary elections.