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Prague, Jan 7 (CTK) – The incumbent President Milos Zeman or former Science Academy chairman Jiri Drahos will become the new Czech president, according to voter preferences as showed by public opinion polls ahead of the January 12-13 first round of the direct presidential election involving nine candidates.

The third most preferred candidate is Michal Horacek, a lyricist and entrepreneur, it ensues from the polls various agencies have released since October.

The polls’ results can be published until Monday. As of Tuesday, a moratorium on their release starts to last until after the election.

All December public opinion polls indicated Zeman’s victory in the first round with the election gain of one third to two fifths of the vote, while Drahos, the probable runner-up, is expected to gain one fifth to one third of the vote.

Out of the other candidates, only Horacek might reach a two-digit result, the polls showed.

According to a poll conducted by the STEM agency and released by TV Nova today, Zeman would gain 45.5 percent of the vote in the first round now, followed by Drahos with 27.2 percent and Horacek with 10.3 percent.

Out of the other candidates, only former ambassador Pavel Fischer’s and former PM Mirek Topolanek’s gains would cross 5 percent, according to STEM.

A model encompassing not only public opinion polls but also betting odds as set by betting agencies shows Zeman as a slight favourite in the possible runoff battle two weeks later.

The runoff vote would decide between the first round’s two most successful candidates, if none of them crossed 50 percent and were elected directly in the first round.

According to this model, the probability of Zeman’s re-election oscillates around 46 percent, compared with a 45-percent probability of Drahos’s victory in the runoff.

Apart from Zeman, Drahos, Horacek, Fischer and Topolanek, the remaining four candidates are doctor and activist Marek Hilser, musician and businessman Petr Hannig, Defence and Security Industry Association head Jiri Hynek and former Skoda Auto head Vratislav Kulhanek.

CVVM and Sanep polls (in percent):

CVVM September 2017CVVM October 2017Sanep November 2017CVVM December 2017
Milos Zeman313430.232
Jiri Drahos182223.621.5
Michal Horacek14139.710.5
Marek Hilser113.94
Pavel Fischer6.33
Mirek Topolanek16.82.5
Vratislav Kulhanek121.91.5
Petr Hannig3.11
Jiri Hynek4.51
Undecided voters282223

STEM/MARK polls (in percent)

November – “definitely yes” and “probably yes” answersNovember – “probably no” and definitely no” answersDecember – “definitely yes” and “probably yes” answersDecember – “probably no” and “definitely no” answers
Jiri Drahos40216041
Milos Zeman45534754
Pavel Fischer16264060
Michal Horacek32523861
Marek Hilser12143862
Jiri Hynek392079
Vratislav Kulhanek12222080
Petr Hannig1387
Mirek Topolanek12791090

Polls Kantar TNS and Median agencies released to Czech Television (in percent):

November modelNovember potentialDecember modelDecember potential
Milos Zeman41.54543.548.0
Jiri Drahos30.540.528.541.5
Michal Horacek16.528.511.528.5
Mirek Topolanek49.57.014.5
Pavel Fischer2.511.55.021.5
Marek Hilser2.56.52.09.5
Vratislav Kulhanek151.58.0
Jiri Hynek0.52.51.05.5
Petr Hannig130.54.5

rtj/dr

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