New opinion poll puts ND, SYRIZA neck-and-neck

A new opinion poll carried out by the firm Public Issue for Kathimerini and Skai puts conservative New Democracy, which leads the tripartite coalition, and the main leftist SYRIZA virtually neck-and-neck.

According to the survey, which was carried out between February 1 and 5 on a sample of 1,027 Greeks, if general elections were held now, 29 percent of the votes would go to SYRIZA while 28.5 percent would back ND. The ultra-right Golden Dawn would draw 11.5 percent of the vote with PASOK and Democratic Left, the other two parties in the coalition, drawing 7 percent and 6 percent respectively. The Independent Greeks would garner 8 percent and the Communist Party 5.5 percent.

Asked what they believed the result would be if elections were held now, 48 percent said ND would prevail compared to 38 percent who thought SYRIZA would emerge first.

The three-party coalition was considered best equipped to govern the country according to 37 percent of respondents while only 23 percent thought a SYRIZA administration could rule effectively.

Antonis Samaras remains the most popular choice for prime minister with 46 percent expressing their support for him compared to 25 percent backing SYRIZA leader Alexis Tsipras. A total of 26 percent of respondents said they believed that neither of the two leaders were suitable for the post of premier.

Overall Greek voters retain a gloomy opinion of the country's prospects with 72 percent reckoning that Greece is heading in the wrong direction, 63 percent seeing a need for "deep changes" in society and 23 percent stating that the only way forward is radical change by means of a revolution.

Six in 10 Greeks (63 percent) said they believed that early general elections were not necessary but 51 pecent said thet believed that snap polls were inevitable before the end of the current government's four-year term.

Meanwhile an overwhelming majority of 96 percent said they believed the new tax system is unfair while 80 percent said they expected upheaval in the labor sector over the next three months.