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AK Dissanayake (50%) maintains lead in Presidential Election voting preferences in January 2024
IHP MRP Presidential Election Voting Intentions Update January 2024

IHP’s Sri Lanka Opinion Tracker Survey (SLOTS) MRP provisional estimates of Presidential Election voting intent in January 2024 show NPP/JVP leader AK Dissanayake with the support of 50% of all adults (-1 since previous month), followed by the SJB leader Sajith Premadasa on 36% (+2), and both Pres. Ranil Wickremesinghe  and a generic SLPP candidate on 7%. 

These estimates are based on the Jan. 2024 revision of the IHP SLOTS Multilevel Regression and Poststratification (MRP) model, which smoothed monthly changes and reduced monthly fluctuations due to sampling noise. This update is for all adults and is based on a revised MRP model using data from 15,590 interviews conducted from Oct. 2021 to 26 February 2024, with 506 interviews during Jan. 2024. 100 model iterations were run to capture model uncertainty. Margins of error are assessed as 1–3% for January.

IHP’s SLOTS MRP methodology first estimates the relationship between a wide variety of characteristics about respondents and their opinions – in this case, ‘If there was a Presidential Election today, who would you vote for?’– in a multilevel statistical model. It then uses a large data file that is calibrated to the national population to predict voting intent in each month since Oct. 2021, according to what the multilevel model says about their probability of voting for various parties (‘post-stratification’) at each point in time. The multilevel model was estimated 100 times to reflect underlying uncertainties in the model and to obtain margins of error.

About IHP

IHP is an independent, non-partisan research centre based in Colombo, Sri Lanka. The SLOTS lead investigator is Dr Ravi Rannan-Eliya of IHP, who has trained in public opinion polling at Harvard University and has conducted numerous surveys over three decades. 


SLOTS combines interviews from a national sample of adults (ages 18 and over) reached by random digit dialling of mobile numbers, and others coming from a national panel of respondents who were previously recruited through random selection. IHP estimates voting intent using an adaptation of Multilevel Regression and Post-Stratification (MRP), with multiple imputation to account for uncertainties in its modelling, exploiting data from all SLOTS interviews to estimate voting in a particular month. 

The January 2024 MRP estimates are based on 506 interviews conducted in January 2024, and 15,590 interviews conducted overall from 1 October 2021–26 February 2024, with a margin of error assessed as 2.5–3.0% for AK Dissanayake, Sajith Premadasa and 0.5–1.5% for Ranil Wickremesinghe and the other potential candidate. All estimates are adjusted to ensure the sample matches the national population with respect to age, sex, ethnicity, socioeconomic status, education, geographical location, and voting in the 2019 Presidential and 2020 General Elections.


The SLOTS survey has previously been funded by the Neelan Tiruchelvam Trust, the UK National Institute for Health and Care Research (NIHR), The Asia Foundation in Sri Lanka, and others. Current fieldwork is financed by the IHP Public Interest Research Fund and others. The sponsors play no role in the study design, analysis, or interpretation of findings. Furthermore, the survey findings do not necessarily reflect the views or positions of past and present funders. Interested parties can contact IHP for more detailed data and results.


Date: 29 February 2023
Time: 11:59 PM Sri Lanka Time


Email: info ‘at’


Dr. Ravi Rannan-Eliya
Email: ravi ‘at’  Twitter: @ravirannaneliya