Electoral commission 15 June released provisional results of 27 May legislative elections: of 151 seats, President Rajoelina’s coalition Isika Rehetra Miaraka amin’i Andry Rajoelina won 78 and leading opposition party Tiako i Madagasikara (TIM) of former President Marc Ravalomanana won seventeen; turnout reportedly low at 31%. TIM 31 May denounced campaign irregularities. Police 8 June arrested 27 soldiers accused of killing three civilians same day in extortion attempt in Ambohimahasoa area; soldiers reportedly threatened magistrates handling case.
Madagascar’s recent elections marked an ostensible return to democracy, but unless the new government works hard to implement meaningful political, economic and social reforms, the prospect of further crisis is just a matter of time.
While the reality and extent of the coup announced yesterday by military officers is still uncertain, the latest events demonstrate the fragility of the situation in Madagascar and the urgent need for a new international strategy to end the long crisis. Negotiations should now focus on international support to the electoral process based on strict conditions.
Madagascar has been in crisis since the bloody upheavals in early 2009. Several rounds of mediation under the auspices of the African Union (AU) and others have not unlocked the stalemate.
Originally published in City Press