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27 March 2017 22:19 (South Africa)

Madagascar coup leader deemed mad by donors

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He’s an international pariah for taking power in a March coup, but Madagascar’s very young President Andry Rajoelina reckons he’s still got a few aces stuck up his sleeve. He now says he will abide by the terms of a power-sharing deal struck in August, if donors free up aid worth hundreds of millions of dollars. Under the terms of the deal Rajoelina and three former presidents are to pick a president, prime minister and three vice-prime ministers in a unity government. Earlier Rajoelina went back on his word and unilaterally chose the new government. Now he says that if the international community removes all sanctions it will be possible to revert to the original charter. One diplomat said that “to suggest we have to give him this money or he won't hold elections suggests a complete misunderstanding about what the money is for. Rajoelina is totally divorced from reality." For some strange reason Rajoelina was invited to the UN climate summit in New York a few weeks back, but there was chaos when African Union delegates prevented him from speaking. Maybe he didn’t realise the climate being debated was more political than environmental.

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