Madagascar News- Current Issues and Perspectives

Hot Spots: Timeline

  • December 10, 2013: Menaces de manifestations publiques avant le 15 Décembre face aux possibles fraudes électorales. A quand la maturité politique?
  • October 30, 2013: Aux nouvelles ce soir, résultats préliminaires des élections: Dr Robinson – Ministre de la santé sous Ravalomanana-  27,74% ; le second Hery Rajaonarimampianina – Ministre des Finances sous Rajoelina-  14, 40%
  • January 29, 2013: Le 14 octobre redevient jour férié et  deux fêtes musulmanes , l’Aid el Fitr et l’Aid el Adha  – début et fin du Ramadan – intègrent le calendrier officiel : fériés pour les Musulmans –
  • November 24, 2011: Ratsiraka returns to Madagascar after nearly a decade of exile in France. Local reactions are mitigated according to the Courrier de Madagascar. Foreign press sees it as a possible catalyst toward crisis resolution.
  • December 08, 2009: Maputo III had taken place over the week-end, without Rajoelina who decided to boycott the Africa-based meeting on the basis of sovereignty. Most local media focus on the outcome of the meeting that resulted in specific decisions on seat sharing within the concensual government. However, headlines in Le Courrier de Madagascar and Madagascar Tribune are about the rejection of all that pertains to Maputo III by Rajoelina and his group supporters. Those groups include the KMDT or Comité de défense de la démocratie et de la Transition and the armed forces led by general Bruno Razafindrakoto, Commander in Chief of the  Gendarmerie Nationale, in charge of internal security, and  general  Ndriarijaona André, head of the armed forces. Members of the Maputo III delegation are scheduled to return to Madagascar early this week and the consensual Prime Minister, Managalaza, is to present the results to Rajoelina. Rajoelina had earlier called the propositions led by mediator Chissano  provocative, and the armed forces vowed “”to take their responsilities””. Moreover, Rajoelina has raised a new polemic  about his assasination attempt, insinuating links between the former and Colonel Ratsimandrava’s assasination at the eve of Ratsiraka’s raising to power in 1975. Reuters says that analysts view  Rajoelina as ” looking increasingly isolated and uncooperative”. Foreign aid is still frozen and will be a determining factor for the working class, as viability of businesses is dependent upon foreign investments.
  • November 11, 2009: According to a local media the Committee for Democracy and Transition or KMDT, a hybrid group emerging from the Malagasy political crisis, plans on a mass rally by the end of the week in contestation of the Addis Abeba agreement. According to the group, the terms of the agreement do not respond to the demands of the mass movement led by Rajoelina and Roindefo. The source says that violence could result from the protest, as the city of Antananarivo denied authorization to the group .
  • November 07, 2009: A New deal is reach in Addis Ababa, aiming at settling the long political crisis in Madagascar,  CNN reports.  The agreement provides for a consensual leadership where Rajoelina is maintained as President of the Transition with two co-presidents, one being from the Ravalomanana mobility, and another one from the Zafy mobility, specify local media.
  • November 04, 2009: Raymond Ranjeva, an eminent Madagascar jurist and former member of the High International Court of Justice (1991-2009), has been nominated by Marc Ravalomanana for heading the Transition for a neutral regime. Cyber Observer adds that Ratsiraka suggests a “collegiate”leadership for the Transition.
  • October 22, 2009: The State Council has denied Monja Roindefo appeal against the appointment of Mangalaza as Prime Minister, reports the Courrier de Madagascar. This is no surprise, and Mangalaza is expected to return from France shortly, says to the same source.
  • October 16, 2009: The Genève-scheduled meeting for finalization of the Maputo deal is off, according to Bloomberg, the New York Times,  and local media. Ravalomanana had refused having talks being held in Europe, say the same sources.
  • September 28, 2009:  Five political parties that poorly performed during last elections demanded that Madagascar withdraw itself from the SADC group and that the mediation group GIC be denied entry in Madagascar, as published by Midi Madagascar.and le Courrier de Madagascar.  According to  the latest  and  Reuters, Roindefo, who is the HAT head of government, is to protest against  the UN that Madagascar is not excluded from the UN yet and as such should be entitled to speech delivery at the UN Assembly. UN News Centre reports that Assembly President Dr. Trekki had previously consulted with UN Secretariat legal officials who had confered that Rajoelina be allowed to speak pending UN Credentials Commission ruling, but ultimately decided to submit the issue to a vote. In conclusion, the majority of members who were present denied Rajoelina access to the podium. Audio files of the summit have been made available through  Tiako i Madagascar . Midi Madagascar reports that Rajoelina conferred with Ratsiraka and Chissano in Paris. Nothing transpired from the meeting.
  • September 25, 2009: According to RFI unfortunate administrative slip  caused Rajoelina’s presence at the UN summit for climate change, causing controversies in Madagascar and confusion at the summit. Midi Madagascar confirms that SADC members and other countries, totaling 23 out of 33 voted against Rajoelina .
  • September 5, 2009: Reuters is among the first international medias to report that the opposition refuses Rajoelina unilateral decision, stating that Madagascar is on its way to a “dangerous situation.” This is a slap to yesterday’s strong statements issued by the UN and the US. In Madagascar, reactions are mitigated, typical manifestation of Malagasy culture and politics,  as the situation causes at least discomfort, if not frustration, awaiting official, international reaction. Local press is cautious. Economic sustainability is a major question that is brought up by the medias. Official statements have being issued by major stakeholders, justifying of their respective positions.   Sobika has posted Ratsiraka statement about his refusal of any involvement with the tandem Rajoelina-Roindefo. Tiako i Madagascar has published Ravalomanana Maputo statement denouncing the recognition of a “putschist” administration. Local press covered the Zafy position of curtailing the mutiny power through enforcement of neutrality . The Cyber Observer has posted the  statement issued by the army for refusing any political involvement.
  • September 4, 2009 18.30 pm AntananarivoTime: Breaking News: Rajoelina announced that he will remain as head of the Transition, and calls for his chosen Prime Minister to implement the Maputo agreement, reports Sobika.
  • September 4, 2009: As the deadline draws near, there are still no signs of reached agreement in Madagascar as to whom the leadership positions will be allocated to, summarize both local and international media. Rajoelina refuses to make any concession, and the other three former heads of state,  locally represented by an irritated Zafy Albert,  have suggested a military alternative, says local press. Subsequently, the army has refused to take over the leadership, reports AFP , and has issued a communiqué reports Cyber Observer. In the meantime, The US and UN urge Madgascar to find a “rapid”compromise and to adhere to the Maputo agreement, according to a US communiqué(AFP) and Reuters.
  • September 1st, 2009: The Maputo deal seems to be falling apart according to local press. The three former presidents of Madagascar are forming a coalition to save the country against incoming disaster at the eve of the September 4th deadline. There are no sign that leaves to believe that the Rajoelina movement will change its stand as to refuse a consensual government leadership. An intransigeant youth group claims to be a “fifth movement” in support of Rajoelina. Civil society  (société civile), mostly composed of economic stakeholders and various groups, calls for a  majority-based decision, reports Madagascar Tribune. Meanwhile,  Ablassé Ouédraogo, mediator appointed by the African Union, is expected in  Antananarivo today, according to Midi Madagascar. The Rajoelina group is to gather the results of its “mini-referendum.” The public is dishearted.
  • August 27, 2009: Maputo II talks have been stalling. Breaking news: the mediator has announced that stakeholders are close to reaching an agreement. Madagascar newspapers predict a strong presence of the Ratsiraka faction.
  • August 20, 2009: According to People’s Daily Online Madagascar politicians postponed their scheduled talks on power transition because of controversy over the freshly-signed  Maputo deal. Mediators are presetnly  in Madagascar, and Rajoelina has rallied holdhovers for a preliminary meeting questionning the terms of the agreement, reports local press. Maputo II was scheduled for August 25-26. Midi Madagascar writes that 457 seats for the new consensus transition are in dispute. Factions of the armed forces demand inclusion in the transition administration.
  • August 17, 2009: According to local press, several interested parties, who are holdhovers of the HAT regime,  refuse several terms of the Maputo deal. These groups include some members of the armed forces, and some groups issued from the Rajoelina regime. As to Rajoelina himself, he would claim the legitimacy of his assignment of the presidency of the transition.
  • April 30, 2009: Reuters reports that the Rajoelina administration has agreed to hold an election before the end of 2009, within the respect of the Constitution. The 53-member contact group, meeting in Addis Ababa, and which includes representatives from the United Nations, is seeking a “consensual solution” with contributions of all stakeholders, including President Ravalomanana.
  • April 29, 2009: Manandafy Rakotonirina, the prime minister of the President in exile has been arrested along with other opposition leaders. Pictures on Cyber Observer show mistreatment of the aging politician.
  • Rajoelina’s wife left for Paris. Unconfirmed reports say that she was booed in Paris.
  • Radio Fahazavana, broadcasting in Malagasy and interviewing eye witnesses, reported a shooting rampage on unarmed civilian protesters. For over two hours militaries pursued ran away protestors  through several neighboring parts of towns, forcing their ways to individuals’ homes where protesters sought safety.
  • There were initial reports from a major hospital of at least two fatal casualties and at least nine wounded including three children who were passer-by. One man eye witnessed one casualty through military pursuits. The victim was shot at the head.
  • The following originates from an SOS for publishing a live Malagasy radio broadcast today March 23 2009:Radio Fanazava, broadcasting in Malagasy and interviewing eye witnesses, reported a shooting rampage on unarmed civilian protesters. For over two hours militaries pursued ran away manifestants through several neighboring parts of town, forcing their ways to individuals’ homes where some manifestants sought safety. There were initial reports of at least two fatal casualties at the time of the broadcast, and several critically-wounded, of which two young passerby children. A witness described a gruesome scene when a manifestant was shot at the head. One man reported that Antananarivo population has reacted with raging violence to the overwhelming repression.
August 27, 2009: Maputo II talks have been stalling. Breaking news: the mediator has announced that stakeholders are close to reaching an agreement. Madagascar newspapers predict a strong presence of the Ratsiraka faction.

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