Georgian Ministers do not trust NDI public opinion polls

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David Darakhvelidze, the Minister of Internally Displaced Persons from the Occupied Territories, Accommodation and Refugees of Georgia, has said he does not trust public opinion polls conducted by the National Democratic Institute (NDI) at all because before the parliamentary elections in 2012, the NDI surveys rated the Georgian Dream at 12% whilst the United National Movement at 60%, which did not prove true. In Darakhvelidze's assessment, "NDI continues its activity with the same pathos."

Paata Zakareishvili, the State Minister for Reconciliation and Civil Equality, said that he had never treated such surveys as reliable.

"If they were not reliable before why should they become reliable today – because I am in power? Such surveys give rise to very many questions for me. As regards my ministry, I do not worry that it does not have high rating because we maximally try not to publicize what we are doing. Our beneficiaries are citizens living in occupied territories who receive certain benefits from us and this does not need publicity," Zakareishvili said.

The Minister of Sport and Youth Affairs, Levan Kipiani, noted that he is not aware of recent results of the poll but he remembers NDI surveys.

"I remember what kind of surveys it produced in the run up to elections, rating the Georgian Dream at 12% when in reality it mustered three or four times more. Therefore, let society comment on this organization," Kipiani said.

The NDI released results of its survey which reflect ratings of politicians and institutions on 8 May. The NDI public opinion poll was conducted over the period from 26 March to 18 April and covered 3,942 people. The survey was financed by the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (Sida).

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