Presidential hopefuls in the Madagascar elections held their final campaigns in the country’s capital of Antananarivo on Saturday.
Madagascar’s President Hery Rajaonarimampianina faces two main challengers in November 7 elections both key players in the island’s past political turmoil have promised to put that behind them and keep the economy’s recovery on track.
One is Marc Ravalomanana, who served as president from 2002 to 2009. The other is Andry Rajoelina, the man who seized power from him in a coup a takeover that scared off foreign investors and led donors to freeze funds.
“Three things are essential, and a priority listens carefully: road construction, safety and above all good governance. We’ll have to do all this, okay?” said Ravalomanana.
“There is a time to sit, there is a time to speak, there is a moment to observe and there is a time to take responsibility. Ladies and gentlemen, Andry Rajoelina is here to save his homeland, to save Madagascar,” said Another presidential candidate,Andry Rajoelina.
There will be 33 other candidates on the long ballot paper. But few are seen having the influence or cash to take on the three established figures and capitalise on discontent over an economy that has still not fully recovered from the chaos.
“Looking after the steelworkers and everybody and keeping his promises and I believe that he will achieve everything he is talking about. He will.” said a supporter of young Malagasies Determined Party, Aina.
Though relative political stability since a 2013 election has enabled Madagascar’s economy to rebound, the country of 25 million people remains among Africa’s poorest. About 80 percent of the population lives on less than $2 per day. Africanews