NDI publishes results of a new survey
The National Democratic Institute - NDI has published the results of the survey Public attitudes in Georgia. The survey looks at issues of public importance, perceptions of democracy and attitudes toward reforms, as well as various domestic and foreign policy issues. The results reflect data collected from March 26 through April 18 in face-to-face interviews with a nationwide representative sample of Georgian speakers that included 3,942 completed interviews.
The 61% of the respondents say the most important issue for them is unemployment, the next are - the problems of territorial unity, poverty, availability of health care and pesnions.
On the question, how the situation has changed since October 2012 in various spheres, 58% of the questioned citizens say that the situation has been worsened from the point of view of growth of prices and inflation; 50% of the respondents think that the situation has imrpoved in respect with the conduct of fair elections, while 44% think that the best improved sphere is the pension policy.
43% of the respondents think that the number of jobs has been reduced after the 2012 parliamentary elections. 35% think that the range of criminal has incresed, while 46% think that the criminal situation has not changed.
Considering various fgactors, the greatest majority, 69% of the respondents say that the situation for their families is the same after October 2012.
36% of the respondents believe that Georgia really or basically is developing in a right direction, 38% says Georgia is not changing at all, while 19% think that the country is developing in a wrong direction.
46% of the respondents think that there is a democracy in Georgia, while 41% gave negative answer.
On the question, how much it is important to protect the rights of the minorities for the development of democracy, 11% of the respondents says it is very important, 51% says it is important, 18% has neutral approach to the issue, while 9% think this issue is less or absolutely not important.
The ongoing political processes in the country was also in the focus of the survey. The respondents were asked about how would they assess the criticism of the president by the former prime minister Bidzina Ivanishvili. 35% think that the criticism was fair, while 40% think it was not acceptable.
26% of the respondents justify the statement of the prime minister, Irakli Gharibashvili that he will not accept the discussions with the parliamentary opposition on public policy issues as they have no moral right to question the work of the government of Georgia; 28% does not approve this statement.
Sixty-two percent of respondents think that former Prime Minister Bidzina Ivanishvili continues to be a decision-maker in the actions of the government as compared to the 18 percent who do not think so and 20 percent who do not have an opinion. Out of those respondents who believe that Bidzina Ivanishvili is still a decision-maker, 41 percent approve of the fact, while 49 percent disapprove.
55% of the respondents approve the funding of the Georgian Orthodox Church wth 25million GEl from the state budget; 21% disapproves this fact.
43% of the respondents approve issuing electronic ID cards by the government, while 33% disapproves it.
Forty-five to forty-three percent margin people are aware of `This affects you too`` campaign launched by the coalition of NGOs and led by ISFED, GYLA and TI, which calls for legislative changes prohibiting alleged illegal surveillance. Sixty-two present of the population approves of the campaign as compared to 10 percent who does not.
Fifty-nine percent of respondents believe that current prosecutions of former government officials is primarily based on the principle of holding government officials accountable for their actions, while 22 percent believe that current prosecutions of former UNM government leaders is primarily based upon the desire for political retribution.
The survey shows that by 65 to 16 percent margin respondents agree that Georgia should join the European Union (EU) as compared to Eurasian Union, with 19 percent expressing no opinion. At the same time, 50 percent of respondents think that Russia is a real and existing threat to Georgia as compared to 36 percent in NDI’s November 2013 poll.
`Georgians’ support for EU membership remains strong and their view of Russia as a real and existing threat has increased. Georgians place a high priority on public accountability, whether it pertains to the actions of the former government, a policy of the current government or their views about the role of a person without office as a decision maker in the government,` said NDI Director Luis Navarro.