NUR-SULTAN (Reuters) -- Voters in Kazakhstan supported constitutional amendments proposed by President Kassym-Jomart Tokayev in a referendum, the Central Election Commission said on Monday.
Tokayev has promoted the reform as a foundation for a new social contract in the oil-rich Central Asian country allied with Russia, and analysts say the vote could be seen as a rehearsal for his bid to win a second term as president.
The commission said that 77.18% of votes in the Sunday referendum were in favor of the amendments, which decentralize decision-making and strip former leader Nursultan Nazarbayev of his "national leader" status. Turnout was 68.06%.
Tokayev proposed the reform package after putting down a coup attempt amid deadly unrest in January and removing his former patron Nazarbayev and his relatives from important positions in the public sector.