Open

Coming up

Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

MEDIAWATCH

No strategy and a beige suit

Read more

THE WORLD THIS WEEK

The World This Week - 29 August 2014 (part 2)

Read more

THE WORLD THIS WEEK

The World This Week - 29 August 2014

Read more

ENCORE!

Alain Choquette: A Hilarious Magician in Paris

Read more

FOCUS

France welcomes Iraqi Christian refugees

Read more

FRANCE IN FOCUS

Emmanuel Macron: A new economy minister with a pro-business agenda

Read more

THE OBSERVERS

More of this year's best Observers stories

Read more

#TECH 24

Changing the world, one video game at a time

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

Socialist Party summer conference kicks off in explosive atmosphere

Read more

  • Exclusive: Fabius warns of further sanctions against Russia

    Read more

  • Experimental Ebola drug ‘ZMapp’ heals all monkeys in study

    Read more

  • IMF stands behind Lagarde amid French corruption probe

    Read more

  • Ukraine to relaunch NATO membership bid

    Read more

  • Suriname leader’s son pleads guilty to courting Hezbollah

    Read more

  • British killer escapes from French psychiatric hospital

    Read more

  • Chelsea’s Torres set for AC Milan switch

    Read more

  • Police hunt for British boy with brain tumour taken to France

    Read more

  • France shines in IMF list of world’s promising economists

    Read more

  • Mapping Ukraine: Canada and Russia in ‘tweet for tat’ row

    Read more

  • First case of Ebola confirmed in Senegal

    Read more

  • Obama has 'no strategy yet' on potential Syria strikes

    Read more

  • Netflix to woo French with ‘House of Cards’ set in Marseille

    Read more

  • French businesses ‘hoping for a new Thatcher’

    Read more

  • Syrian refugees surpass 3 million, UN says

    Read more

  • West backs Ukrainian claims of Russian incursion

    Read more

  • Libyan PM resigns as Islamists set up rival administration

    Read more

  • UN says 43 peacekeepers captured in Golan Heights

    Read more

  • The deleted tweets of Manuel Valls

    Read more

  • Peru seizes record 6.5 tonnes of Europe-bound cocaine

    Read more

Africa

Government sacks anti-president mayor

Video by Jonathan WALSH , Gulliver CRAGG

Latest update : 2009-02-04

Madagascar's government fired Andry Rajoelina, the mayor of Antananarivo, after he led demonstrations demanding that President Marc Ravalomanana step down from office and threatened to set up a parallel interim government.

REUTERS - Madagascar fired the capital's mayor on Tuesday after Andry Rajoelina said he would establish an interim government this weekend if the Indian Ocean island's president refused to step down.

 

For two weeks Rajoelina, 34, has been leading thousands of people in demonstrations against President Marc Ravalomanana, whom he calls a dictator.

 

Scores have died in the unrest, the U.S. envoy putting the death toll at more than 100, while police said 76 had died during street fights, fires and looting.

 

The fresh political instability on traditionally volatile Madagascar -- the world's fourth largest and one of its most biodiverse islands -- threatens to deter tourists and harm its reputation as a secure destination for foreign investment.

 

Rajoelina's replacement as mayor was named as Guy Rivo Randrianarisoa by Edmond Rakotomvato, a local city official.

 

Rajoelina was elected by popular vote but his sacking is legal, one expert said.

 

"The government's move is legal if it feels the mayor is not fulfilling his mandate," said constitutional law expert Jean-Eric Rakotoarisoa.


"However putting the move in place will be more difficult because it will be contested by the people of Antananarivo who are behind the mayor."

 

Rajoelina on Tuesday addressed a 2,000-strong crowd clad in orange when he issued a weekend deadline for his demands.

 

"We will wait until Saturday. If there is no reply or peaceful solution from the president, then we will put in place a transitional government," he said.

 

Ravalomanana, 59, a self-made millionaire, has insisted he is still at the helm and called for calm.
The African Union has condemned any moves to overthrow him.

 

Rajoelina, nicknamed TGV after the French express train, has delivered letters to the High Constitutional Court and parliament demanding Ravalomanana be removed from power.

 

Police have detained six leaders behind the anti-government movement, picking them up as they prepared for a rally on Monday in the northeastern port city of Toamasina.

 

"They are accused of holding a public meeting without permission," said regional police head Pascal Andriambahoaka.

 

Analysts say Rajoelina has successfully tapped into widespread frustration with the government, but may have over-played his hand in trying to overthrow the president.

 

Big investors in Madagascar include Rio Tinto and Sherritt International, who plan to extract nickel, bauxite, cobalt and Ilmenite.

Date created : 2009-02-03

COMMENT(S)