Yemeni's expectations about the future in 2013 

More than half of Yemenis haven’t heard about federalism, says a public opinion survey, conducted by PERCENT Corporation on a total sample of 1064 respondents in nine governorates. According to the survey, 56% of Yemenis, the majority of who are from northern governorates, haven’t heard about federalism or self-governed regions, compared to nearly 44.3% who said they have heard about federalism. Men are more knowledgeable about federalism than women, as more than 60% of men said they have heard about federalism, compared to just 28% of women.


When distributing the results over northern and southern governorates, the percentage of those who said they heard about federalism in the southern governorates covered by the study (Aden, Dhalea and Hadramout) is 38% higher than the northern governorates (Sana’a, Taiz, Hodeida, Ibb, Amran and Hajjah). According to the survey, some 76.6% in the southern governorates have heard about federalism, compared to 38% in the northern governorates.


Aden has the highest percentage (92%) of people who have heard about federalism and self-governed regions, followed by Dhalea and Hadramout, compared to less than 60% of people in Sana’a, less than 50% in Ibb and less than 19% in Amran.
The findings indicate that knowledge about federalism is low in the northern governorates, particularly in the urban areas like the Capital City of Sana’a. Such fact may be symptomatic of community fears in these governorates about the option of federalism, as a high percentage of the population is opposed to federalism as a structure for the State. This will be made clear later on…

Structure of the State:
A question about the structure of the state was asked to those (44.3% of Yemenis] who said they heard or know about federalism: “What, in your opinion, is the favorable structure of the State? Do you prefer a federal state of multiple self-governed regions or a simple [unitary] state (without self-governed regions)? If you don’t know the difference between the two, say that.
As per the findings, 38.2% of Yemenis, who have heard about federalism, favor a federal system while 39.7% favor the current structure. And, more than 7% of those who have heard about federalism said they don’t know the difference between federalism and other governing structure , nearly 9% don’t know which structure is the most appropriate for Yemen, and nearly 6% refused to answer. There have been no differences between men’s and women’s answers.

Supporters of federalism are higher in the southern governorates than in the northern governorates by nearly 13% in the total results, as more than 47% in the southern governorates said they favor a federal state, compared to 34.7% in the northern governorates. And, 49.7% of people in the northern governorates favor the unitary state, compared to just 13.7 in the southern governorates. A significant portion of people in the southern governorates (15.3%) either don’t know what the most appropriate option is, or they (17.6%) don’t want to answer the question.
The detailed results by governorate revealed that preferences for federalism are higher than preferences for the unitary state in northern governorates, too, like the Capital City of Sana’a and Hodeida. However, contradictory results surfaced in southern governorates like Dhalea where people voting for a unitary state are more than those who selected a federal structure for the state.

All those who have heard about federalism in Amran governorate selected the current structure of the state when asked about which structure of state they prefer, followed by Ibb Governorate with more than 78%. And, nearly half of Taiz community members prefer the simple structure [unitary state], compared to 38% who prefer a federal state. The results of Dhalea were relatively similar to those of Taiz.
In Hajjah governorate, nearly 46% selected federalism and 44% selected the simple structure of the state [Unitary State]. Of those who have heard about federalism in the northern governorate of Hodeida, 38% favored a federal system, compared to 31% who favored a unitary state. And, nearly half of the population, who have heard about federalism in the Capital City of Sana’a, favor a federal system, compared to nearly 25% who selected the unitary state; and nearly one-fourth of the population said they don’t know which option would be better.
Of those who have heard about federalism in Hadramout governorate, 42% favor a federal system, compared to only 3.8% who favor the current unitary structure, and more than 42% said they don’t know which option would work best for Yemen. In Aden governorate where more than 92% of the population said they heard about federalism, only 60% of them favor a federal structure for the State of Yemen; 30% refused to answer and 8.5% said they don’t know what the most appropriate system for Yemen is, compared to only 2.1% who voted for a unitary state.

The level of education had an impact on the responses of informants, who have heard about federalism, as those, who said they don’t know the difference between the unitary state and the federal state, or don’t know which system of governance would be the best for Yemen, were mostly illiterate or have lower education. The current centralized structure of the state was the most favorable option for more than half of the illiterate respondents, compared to 16.7% who selected federalism. (See the diagram: Structure of the State and the Level of Education).

Number of Regions:
Those who selected federalism as a favorable structure of the state were asked about the number of regions they prefer. Consequently, 34.4% of them, mostly women, say they favor a federal system of two self-governed regions (North and South). Those who voted for a federal system of five regions stood second with 27%, most of who were men. The rest voted for a federal system of three, four or more than five self-governed regions, while 4.4%, mostly women, said they don’t know, and 2.2% refused to answer.
By gender, more than half of women, who favor federalism, said they prefer a federal system of two self-governed regions, compared two one-fourth of men. The findings revealed that 36% of men support a federal system of five self-governed regions.

Of those who support federalism, 85% in the south voted for a federal system of two self-governed regions (North and South), compared to only 8.5% in the North. And, 39% of respondents in the northern governorates voted for a federal system of five self-governed regions while the rest voted for a federal system of four regions or more than five regions.


Of those who support federalism, 85% in the south voted for a federal system of two self-governed regions (North and South), compared to only 8.5% in the North. And, 39% of respondents in the northern governorates voted for a federal system of five self-governed regions while the rest voted for a federal system of four regions or more than five regions.

Methodology
The findings of such quantifiable study are based on direct [face-to-face] interviews, conducted between October 27 and November 6, 2013, with a total of 1064 interviewees, who were randomly selected from the age group 18 years over, and they live in 79 villages/neighborhoods scattered over 72 districts in nine governorates.
Based on the total population of Yemen, one could say that the level of trust reaches up to 95%, and the margin of error is ± 2.95.
The population was represented in the sample, taking into consideration gender equality, in that half of the respondents were men and the other half women. Up to 68.4% of the interviewees were conducted in rural areas and 31.6% in the urban areas. The interviews were distributed to target governorates as per their respective population weight.
The sample followed the random selection methodology throughout all its phases (a random multi-phased/ multi-category sample) as per the official population data from the 2004 census and Yemen’s population projection estimates for the period 2005 – 2025.
The interviews were conducted by men and women interviewers in the field, as per the questionnaire form (measurement tool), which contained a cluster of questions about the topic of the study, in addition to demographic and other sample-related questions.
The tablet devices were used for data collection through the application of PERCENTAB.1, and the data collection phase was directly observed by main supervisors via the Internet through interview samples displayed on the website, and a reviewer might have access to the interviews of one’s respective team through a special account.
All the interviews implemented were reviewed and examined; and phone calls were made for verification on 15% of the total interviews in which contact data of target interviewees were provided.
The response rate in the survey was 72.9%, according to AAPOR Standards for surveys implemented through direct (face to face) interviewers. Up to 74.3% of the interviews were completely conducted in first-selection houses, and 25.7% were conducted in substitute houses for many reasons, including refusal to be interviewed or inaccessibility to a first-selection house.