Williams and Associates conducted 1,550 interviews  that yielded a “12% POSITIVE vote differential for Atiku over Buhari” from January 11-16, 2019.
The poll employed the same team and methodology that also correctly predicted Buhari's win in 2015. The survey findings showed 64 percent of respondents asserting that President Buhari does not deserve to be re-elected because of poor job performance. Also, 53 percent of those surveyed were pessimistic about the future of Nigeria's economy.
Many respondents agreed that unemployment, poverty, corruption, insecurity in that order will shape the directions of this year's elections. The poll findings also revealed an 11 percent increase in the number of people willing to vote in the 2019 presidential election when compared with the turnout for the 2015 election.
Read more of our coverage of #NigeriaDecides2019:
- Meet Nigeria's presidential candidates of 2019 
- Is the Nigerian government gagging the judiciary ahead of presidential elections in February? 
- Old age, hate speech, press freedom: Critical issues in Nigeria's 2019 presidential elections 
- How will propaganda shape Nigeria's 2019 presidential elections? 
- Nigeria's retired military generals battle for influence in 2019 presidential elections 
- With tensions rising ahead of 2019 presidential elections, Nigerians fear internet shutdown 
Abubakar recently visited  the United States (January 17 and 18) after almost ten years. Abubakar was linked to a multi-million dollar business scandal with a U.S. congressman. The U.S. Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs also accused him of money laundering and bribery. This led to the widely held assumption that he was banned from visiting the U.S.
Reuters claims that the travel ban on Abubakar  “was waived temporarily by the U.S. State Department after lobbyists mounted a campaign.” An anonymous source told Reuters that Abubakar was allowed to enter the US because
… the United States saw little benefit to creating bad blood with the man who might be the next leader of Africa’s most populous nation and the continent’s biggest oil producer.
Abubakar's lobbyists argued that the top U.S. official for African affairs, Assistant Secretary Tibor Nagy, had an obligation to encourage democracy in the seventh most populous country in the world.