Chissano to mediate the Madagascar crisis

Thursday April 26 2018

Mr Joachim Chissano. FILE | NATION MEDIA GROUP


Former Mozambican President Joachim Chissano was Thursday expected in Antananarivo to mediate in the Madagascar political crisis.

The 15-nation Southern African Development Community (SADC) decided to urgently send Mr Chissano to the island state that has been in the grip of violent clashes between opposition supporters and security agencies.

SADC made the decision at its summit in Luanda, Angola on Tuesday.

Political actors

Mr Chissano's mission entails facilitating a national dialogue to calm down political tensions and come up with consensus on the electoral reforms.

Meanwhile in Madagascar, diplomats struggled to meet with the various political actors.


Some envoys held a closed-door talks with President Hery Rajaonarimampianina at the State House of Iavoloha on Tuesday evening.

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However, the situation remains tense with more demonstrations by the opposition supporters planned in various regions from Thursday.

Some 73 opposition “MPs for Change” are leading their supporters in the agitation for reforms and the removal of President Rajaonarimampianina from power.

They were also planning to institute legal proceedings against the government for the violent disruption of the opposition demonstrations and rallies.

Lobby group

Amnesty International has urged the Malagasy authorities to investigate the recent deadly clampdown in the capital.

“Madagascar has a legal obligation under international human rights law to respect, protect, promote and fulfill the right of everyone to life,” said the lobby group.

At the centre of the Madagascar crisis are the proposed electoral laws the opposition believes were aimed at locking out some candidates from the next presidential race.