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AU Official Confident About Madagascar Political Agreement

By Peter Clottey
08 October 2009

In Madagascar, under the agreement reached Wednesday, Andry Rajoelina will be the head of state to lead a transitional government until elections are held in November next year.

Rajoelina is however barred from participating in the presidential election as a vice president and prime minister were named in the new cabinet.

Political analysts say the agreement would go a long way in resolving the ongoing political crisis.

Ablasse Ouedraogo, the African Union's special representative to Madagascar who acted as a mediator said that the continental body is confident in the smooth implementation of the just concluded agreement.

"In Madagascar, we have a regime which came to power by a coup d'état. This is unacceptable. And the ultimate goal of the African Union as well as for the international community is to bring Madagascar back to the constitutional order," Ouedraogo said.

He said a timeline was unanimously agreed told hold general elections next year.

"In a period of 15 months decided by Malagasy politicians to organize elections, transparent and credible elections to have a new president and a new constitution for the celebration of the 50th anniversary of Madagascar," he said.

Ouedraogo said there is need for international involvement in the election.

"Since we do have a roadmap now, we have to mobilize the entire international community for the organization of this election," Ouedraogo said.

He said the African Union will support Madagascar's democracy efforts.

"The first support is to have a close followup on the implementation of the charter adopted and signed by the Malagasy politicians. And as soon as the transitional institutions are in place, we do believe that we are now in a normal situation, which will allow all the international community to intervene and to give appropriate support to Madagascar," he said.

Ouedraogo said the African Union did well in mediating the negotiations that led to the agreement.

"We started the negotiations sometime in April and we got the agreement as well as the charter for the transition signed on the 9th of August and today we have…after one day meeting we have now the heads of all the institutions," Ouedraogo said.

He expressed confidence in the new transitional cabinet ahead of the election.

"We do believe that really with more political goodwill, we will continue the process… as you know nothing is easy. We still have to put pressure on the people in power in Madagascar in such a way to make sure that we will not miss our target," he said.

Meanwhile United Nations General Secretary Ban Ki-Moon has welcomed the new transitional government ahead of the November 2010 scheduled elections.

Madagascar is however still under suspension from the African Union and the Southern African Development Community (SADC) after both bodies condemned Andry Rajoelina'a ascension to power as a coup d'état.

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