Connect with us


Madagascar President Re-elected As Opposition Denounces Irregularities



Incumbent president Andry Rajoelina is poised for a new term in Madagascar.

The election commission said Saturday that he won the first round of the presidential election with 58.9% of the votes.

Speaking in Antananarivo, Rajoelina hailed the « people’s choice.

« This year, in the first round of voting, I still managed to secure more than 2 million 850,000 votes, that shows the determination of the Malagasy people to continue along the path of development […] It’s precisely for this reason that I’m even more committed to catch up with Madagascar’s development lag. Madagascar must shine, and now we’re going to continue working to implement all the development plans we’ve already started for Madagsacar. »

In the last presidential vote in 2018, a second round was necessary for Rajoelina to win the presidency. At the time, he secured 2 586 938 votes.

Just over 46% of the 11 million voters cast a ballot this time. Vote tower was lower that during the last election.

Ten of the 12 rivals of Rajoelina refused to campaign and called for boycott.

Their collective said Friday (Nov. 24) that it would « not recognize the results » of the contested November 16 vote.

The Constitutional Court now has to formally validate the results.

“Illegitimate election, riddled with irregularities”
Madagascar President Andry Rajoelina has won re-election in the first round of a ballot boycotted by nearly all opposition candidates in the Indian Ocean island nation, the election commission said Saturday.

Turnout was just over 46 percent, down on the previous presidential election in 2018, which the election commission blamed on « ambient political climate » and « manipulation of opinion ».

Rajoelina first came to power in 2009 following a mutiny that ousted former president Marc Ravalomanana. He then skipped the following elections only to make a winning comeback in 2018.

The former mayor of the capital Antananarivo, is accused by rivals of corruption, greed, and turning a blind eye to the pillage of the country’s natural resources, including its precious rosewood forests.

« What results? What election? » was the joint opposition response to a request for comment on Rajeolina’s victory.

« We will not recognise the results of this illegitimate election, riddled with irregularities, and we decline all responsibility for the political and social instability that could ensue », the opponents warned.

The opposition has not yet indicated if it will formally contest the result and has not called for more street demonstrations.

In the weeks leading up to the vote, the opposition — including two former presidents — led near-daily, largely unauthorised protests that were regularly dispersed by police using tear gas.

Madagascar has been in turmoil since media reports in June revealed Rajoelina had acquired French nationality in 2014.

Tense socio-political climate
Under local law, the president should have lost his Madagascan nationality, and with it, the ability to lead the country, his opponents said.

The head of Madagascar’s lower house of parliament on November 09 called for the suspension of the November 16 presidential elections.

The mediation group headed by the official concluded the current situation in the country did not allow for a free and credible vote.

The group including the organization that bring together Madagascar’s four biggest Christian churches spoke to the press in Antananarivo.

On early November, some 60 Madagascan civil society organisations and trade unions have called for the « cancellation » of the first round vote, warning of an « even harder crisis » if the election were to go ahead.

Opposition candidates complained of an « institutional coup » in favour of the incumbent, accusing government of working to reappoint Rajoelina.

They called for the electoral process to be suspended and for the international community to intervene.

Eight countries and organisations including the European Union and the United States expressed concern about the « disproportionate use of force » to disperse opposition demonstrations.

The opposition has denounced irregularities, including closed polling stations, a lack of ballot boxes and the use of state resources by Rajoelina for his campaign.

One of the two opponents who formally remained in the race, Siteny Randrianasoloniaiko, also denounced « worrying anomalies » which he said « raise legitimate questions about the validity of the results ».

The election took place « in regular and transparent conditions », Arsene Dama, the president of the national electoral commission, said on Saturday.

Dama’s impartiality has been questioned by the opposition.


Continue Reading
Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Votre adresse e-mail ne sera pas publiée. Les champs obligatoires sont indiqués avec *


14-year-old boy arrested in parents’ deaths, tried to kill sister, sheriff says



A 14-year-old boy was in custody Friday after allegedly killing his parents and trying to kill his 11-year-old sister in their Fresno County, California home, authorities said.

Deputies were dispatched to the residence in the community of Miramonte on Wednesday night on a 911 call reporting a break-in and attack, Sheriff John Zanoni said at a news conference Friday.

Deputies found the parents dead and the sister injured. A 7-year-old sibling was uninjured, and was in the care of relatives, Zanoni said.

The teenage boy told deputies someone broke in attacked family members before fleeing in a pickup, but detectives discovered inconsistencies in his story, and he was ultimately taken into custody, the sheriff said.

Fresno County Sheriff John Zanoni during the news conference.
Fresno County Sheriff John Zanoni at a news conference Friday.Fresno County Sheriff’s Office / via Facebook
“He fabricated the story of the break-in,” Zanoni said.

The teen sustained a few scratches, he said, but there was no indication he had self-inflicted injuries.

The parents were identified as father Lue Yang and mother Se Vang, both 37. The cause and manor of death were still pending, a sheriff’s spokesperson said.

The sister had severe injuries and was expected to survive after receiving trauma care, Zanoni said.

Authorities were still cataloging weapons and were not prepared to say exactly what was used in the attacks, the sheriff said, adding that some of the multiple weapons used in the violence were not uncommon in rural areas.

Miramonte is in the Sierra Nevada mountains, about 40 miles west of Mount Whitney.

Miramonte sign by a road at night.
Deputies were dispatched to the residence in the community of Miramonte. Fresno County Sheriff’s Office / via Facebook
The motive has not been determined, Zanoni said. Deputies had not made previous visits to the household.

It wasn’t clear if charges had been formally filed or if the suspect has retained counsel in the case. The Fresno County public defender’s office did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

The teen was being held in a juvenile facility on allegations of murder and attempted murder, the sheriff said.

“It is extremely tragic,” he said.


Continue Reading


Burundi’s President Calls for Stoning of Gay Couples 



Burundi’s President Evariste Ndayishimiye recently launched a virulent tirade against same-sex marriage, denouncing it as an « abominable practice » and advocating for the stoning of gay couples, citing religious reasons.

The President, known for his conservative Christian views, previously called for homosexuals to be « banished » and treated as outcasts. He criticized Western countries opposing LGBTQ+ rights and defiantly rejected aid from those advocating such practices, urging individuals embracing those beliefs to stay abroad.

This strong stance is in line with the conservative Christian values prevalent in the Great Lakes country, where same-sex relations are punishable by imprisonment.

This statement comes in reaction as the global discourse on LGBTQ+ rights has seen some notable developments, such as Pope Francis’ declaration on December 18th regarding the blessing of homosexual couples.

While this marks a symbolic shift in the Catholic Church’s stance, it’s essential to note that the Church maintains a clear distinction between homosexual and heterosexual marriages.

The Vatican’s doctrine of the « one true marriage » underscores its position that while marriage for all is tolerated, it is not yet fully accepted within the Catholic religion.

However, implementing such changes globally is a complex endeavour. Despite the Vatican’s guidance, the ability to enforce a shift in mentality and impose measures across all Catholic communities proves challenging.

Several African churches have already signalled their resistance to these advances. For instance, the bishops of Cameroon explicitly rejected any change, stating, « We formally prohibit all blessings of homosexual couples. » Similarly, Togo has expressed openness to individuals in same-sex relationships but encourages priests to refrain from blessing such couples.

This dynamic reflects the ongoing struggle within the Catholic Church to reconcile differing perspectives on LGBTQ+ issues, illustrating the tension between global doctrinal shifts and the autonomy of individual religious communities, particularly in conservative regions like Africa.


Continue Reading


Ivory Coast will deliver 50 million liters of gasoline monthly to Guinea



Ivory Coast will deliver 50 million liters of gasoline per month to Guinea, following the explosion and fire at the country’s main fuel depot, Ivorian national television announced Wednesday evening.

“Côte d’Ivoire is committed to delivering 50 million liters of gasoline per month to Guinea,” said a journalist from Radiotélévision Ivoirienne (RTI), without specifying the duration of this aid.

“The practical terms of the contract and the security of the convoys will be signed this Thursday,” said another journalist from the channel, specifying that Guinea had a monthly need of 70 million liters of gasoline.

The Guinean Minister of the Economy, Moussa Cissé, met on Wednesday in Abidjan with the Ivorian Minister of Mines, Oil and Energy, Mamadou Sangafowa Coulibaly.

Saturday, five days after the explosion and fire in Conakry of the country’s main fuel depot which left 24 dead and 454 injured, according to a new report, the Guinean government announced the resumption of gasoline distribution, in rationing it.

Twenty-five liters per vehicle and five liters per motorcycle and tricycle were authorized, with the use of cans prohibited.

The population was deprived of gasoline throughout the territory since the explosion and fire, leading to the paralysis of a large part of the economy.

Demonstrations in several localities last week sometimes turned into clashes between groups of young people demanding the return of gasoline to service stations and the security forces.

Furthermore, the Guinean government announced Wednesday that the fire at the fuel depot was « completely extinguished », in a press release sent to AFP.

In total, more than 11,000 people were directly affected by the fire.


Continue Reading