News & Analysis

Final polls confirm comedian as front-runner in Ukraine’s presidential election

Final polls ahead of Ukraine’s presidential election have confirmed former comedian Volodymyr Zelensky (pictured above) as the front-runner, with a comfortable, double-digit lead over all other candidates.

According to a poll carried out by the Rating Sociological Group, conducted between March 14 and 22, the TV star will enter the second round with 26.6 per cent of the votes. His two main rivals, incumbent president Petro Poroshenko and former Ukrainian prime minister Yulia Tymoshenko are tied for second, with 17 per cent each. All of the other candidates in the 40-strong field poll below 10 per cent. As many as one in five voters have yet to decide how they will vote, however.

In another poll, conducted by the Kyiv International Institute of Sociology, Mr Zelensky has the support of 32.1 per cent among those who have already decided whom to vote for. Mr Poroshenko is ranked second with 17.1 per cent while support for Ms Tymoshenko is just 12.5 per cent.

The first round of the presidential election will take place on March 31. The top two candidates will then go forward to the second round on April 21.