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The ruling party is likely to sweep the Kazakh parliamentary elections – The Times of India

Almaty: Kazakhstan voted in snap parliamentary elections on Sunday that are widely expected to bolster President Kassym Jomart. TokayevHis grip on power and the completion of a cabinet reshuffle of the ruling elite began after he assumed full leadership last year.
By the time polling stations closed across the country, 54.2% of voters had cast ballots. Central Election Commission He said. Polling results are due after midnight (1800 GMT), with official data due on Monday.
A stronger mandate would help Tokayev navigate the regional upheaval caused by Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and the subsequent damage to trade, investment and supply chains across the former Soviet Union.
Although he officially became president in 2019, Tokayev, 69, has remained in the shadow of his predecessor and former patron. Nursultan Nazarbayev Until January 2022, when the two fall out amidst a coup attempt and violent unrest.
Tokayev sidelined Nazarbayev, after his suppression of political unrest in the oil-rich Central Asian country, and a number of his aides were removed from high positions in the public sector, some of whom later faced corruption charges.
While Tokayev made a cabinet reshuffle, the lower house of parliament was elected when Nazarbayev He still had sweeping powers and commanded governance Just Otan Party-elections were not scheduled until 2026, and the president called for a snap vote.
Unlike Nazarbayev, Tokayev chose not to lead the ruling party, renaming Amanat, but opinion polls show he is likely to retain a comfortable majority and form the core of his support base in the legislature, especially in the absence of strong opposition parties on the ballot. .
However, for the first time in nearly two decades, many opposition figures are running as independents, a move that could allow some government critics to win a limited number of seats.
However, in Almaty, Kazakhstan’s largest city that usually shows the most support for the opposition, voting appeared sluggish on Sunday morning amid a heavy police presence on the streets.
“We still complain that nothing is changing in our country and we ourselves do not participate in the political life of our country,” said Yevgenia, a 36-year-old marketing manager who declined to reveal her last name or say for whom she voted. “Getting out and voting is the least we can do to make change happen.”
Casting his vote in Astana early in the morning without speaking to the press, Tokayev said the vote would allow him to start implementing his plan to reform the country and ensure a more equitable distribution of its oil wealth.
The completion of the political transition is also likely to strengthen Tokayev’s hand in foreign policy. Despite gaining Moscow’s support during the turmoil of 2022, he has refused to support Russia’s invasion of Ukraine or to recognize its annexation of some Ukrainian lands.
Astana is trying to maintain good relations with both Moscow, its neighbor and main trading partner, and the West, which seeks to isolate Russia.

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