4 ex-Presidents, 36 others in tight race for Madagascar presidency

Among the 36 presidential aspirants in Madagascar, four are former presidents. Photo : AFP

Addis Ababa, Ethiopia (ADV) – Four former presidents are among 38 candidates contesting Madagascar’s presidential elections, ADV confirmed Thursday.

The former presidents include outgoing President Hery Rajaonarimampianina, Didier Ratsiraka, Marc Ravolamanana and Andry Rajoelina.

Presidential polls on the world’s largest island are billed for 7 November 2018.

Analysts told ADV that it was still difficult to predict the poll results but that a second round was imminent.

The president of Madagascar is elected for a five-year term by the people, by absolute majority through a two-round system.

The incumbent President Rajaonarimampianina was elected in July 2015 for his first four-year mandate.

An estimated 8,484,714 voters went to the polls at some 20,072 polling stations, according to the national elections agency.

Madagascar’s first President, Philibert Tsiranana, was elected at independence in 1960 and was reelected without opposition in March 1972.

However, he resigned only 2 months later in response to massive anti-government demonstrations which have characterized the country’s political history to date.

With a poverty rate of 76.2%, Madagascar, a former French colony, is one of the world’s poorest countries according to World Bank data.

Madagascar is among the rare countries in world not rocked by war situation but is steadily become poorer since independence according to researcher Francois Roubaud who co-authored “Enigma and paradox: Madagascar’s political economy”.

© Bur-csa – A.H / N.A / From our regional correspondent Tamba Jean-Matthew III– African Daily Voice (ADV)