Two Bitter Rivals Raise the Stakes in Madagascar’s Presidential Election

Supporters attend an election rally for presidential hopeful Marc Ravalomanana, Antananarivo, Madagascar, Nov. 3, 2018 (AP photo by Kabir Dhanji).
Supporters attend an election rally for presidential hopeful Marc Ravalomanana, Antananarivo, Madagascar, Nov. 3, 2018 (AP photo by Kabir Dhanji).
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On Dec. 19, voters in Madagascar will elect their next president in a second-round runoff pitting two ex-presidents and bitter rivals against each other. Marc Ravalomanana, the 68-year-old economic pragmatist who held the office from 2002 until 2009, will face Andry Rajoelina, the 44-year-old populist who ousted him from power in a 2009 coup and ran the country under an internationally isolated transitional government until 2013. In first-round voting on Nov. 7, Ravalomanana and Rajoelina received 35.3 percent and 39.2 percent of the vote, respectively, far ahead of the other 34 candidates on the ballot, including the incumbent, Hery Rajaonarimampianina, […]

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