The survey of 2,307 respondents in 16 cities conducted by the Kazakhstan Institute of Politician Decisions showed that 34% of residents, city dwellers, had been unaware of the merger of the National Social-Democratic Party (NSDP) and Azat (Freedom).

 

 

"The news about the consolidation of the two oppositional parties has provoked no response, since every third respondent has never heard the news," IPD expert Irina Chernykh told reporters on Thursday in Almaty.

 

31.3% are uncertain how to treat merger, 16.8% see it as "a fruitless effort," 13.1% support the decision and 4.8% are negative about it.

 

As reported, on October 26 a congress of the two major Kazakh opposition parties, the National Social-Democratic Party and Azat (Freedom), decided to merge into one party called National Social Democratic Party Azat. National Social Democratic Party leader Zharmakhan Tuyakbai and Azat leader Bulat Abilov had announced the unification plans two weeks earlier.

 

The survey demonstrated that in September 2.9% respondents would have voted for Azat and 1.8% for NSDP, which in total was 4.7%, though after the merger the total number of votes dropped to 2.9%.

 

"A decline in the rating of the consolidated party could be referred to the lack of the rebranding efforts and a widespread PR campaign," Chernylkh said.

 

The margin of error in the survey is 1%.

 

Interfax-Kazakhstan