Monday 21 January 2019
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africanews - 3 month ago

Electoral campaign ends in Madagascar

Malagasy voters take to the poll on Wednesday in a high-stakes election with three ex-presidents as front-runners. Nearly 10 million voters are eligible to select a president from a list of 36 candidates who include former presidents, ex-prime ministers, pastors and a popular rock singer. The November 7 election is the tenth presidential poll in Madagascar since 1965, and the second since the 2009 coup that isolated the country from the international community. For the citizens, the priority of this poll is summed up in their living conditions. “I am happy to go and vote for the President of the Republic to change because the former President has no consideration for the poor, He only pays attention to the people in his sphere up there but not to the poor people,” said an eligible voter. “I am happy to go and vote and I have to vote. I have remained silent until now but now I will express my opinion, because it is my right,” added another voter. Hery Rajaonarimampianina and his two predecessors Andry Rajoelina and Marc Ravalomanana are the frontrunners in the presidential race, according to observers and a September opinion poll. To secure an outright victory in the presidential election, a candidate needs to secure an absolute majority (50 per cent plus one vote) in the first round. A run-off vote has been scheduled for December 19, in case none of the candidates secures a first round win. Politics in the island nation, a former French colony, have long been marred by coups and unrest, with citizens rarely experiencing a peaceful transfer of power. AFP

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