Archive for the ‘Madagascar dans une crise interminable’ Category
Former president Marc Ravalomanana finally stepped on the Malagasy territory, his homeland on sunday 12th october in the night. A land where his followers call him: Dada, or father. Where he was once democratically elected as Chief of State then thrown out of power by a controversial coup d’état in 2009. A transition government was put in place reigning over the not so glorious years of political instability. This time around, Dada successfully entered the Malagasy territory without the typically mediatised declaration of his arrival. Surprising many of his followers – Dada is back !
Back to bickering
Dada’s arrival was followed by predictable controversies. The current President Rajaonarimampianina announced that he has been arrested, emphasis added, to ensure his safety. Dada has actually been placed “in a supervised area” to ensure his safety. Clearly he has been invisibly hand cuffed and imprisoned by the authorities in a naval base in the North of the island in Diego Suarez. None of the Government officials hierarchically competent to decide on such matter was present at the conseil de gouvernement that was to decide on Dada’s fate. General Dominique Rakotozafy, minister of Défence, Didier Gérard Paza, secretary to the gendarmerie nationale, as well as the minister of “public security” who would be the principal decision maker on such issues were not involved the meeting. Once again, the lack of transparency on defining events in Madagascar’s political future is not surprising.
Dada « the martyr? »
Where should we start? A shady house arrest, that was not decided by a tribunal, without a warrant, I presume, thus devoid of any legal basis. It was in fact a decision taken by the conseil de gouvernement, thus by the executive branch. Should we call it a “kidnapping” or an “arbitrary arrest”? Thus in violation of the rights of a former Chief of State, a legislation upheld in Madagascar as well as articles 5 and 9 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights which was ratified and implemented by the Malagasy Government.
If Ravalomanana, was a danger to another person, to the population, to national security, similar measure emanating from the legislative branch could potentially apply. However, as President Rajaonarimampianina declared, he had been locked away in Diego on the basis of security threats. In the legislation on the rights of former Chief of State, it is possible to assign military type of surveillance if such threat is suspect and there are reasonable grounds that Dada was indeed in danger. Needless to say, it is only a matter of the most simple research to conclude that Dada under house arrest was an arbitrary decision.
The government of Rajaonarimampianina should calculate his actions carefully since such blatant abuse of Dada’s right is unacceptable even when rubber stamped by the SADC and FRANCE, who in fact congratulated him on obvious violations.
To be continued ….
The contradictory opinions of the international community : SADC and la belle FRANCE
“(…) Mandela is like Moses, leading the Israelites. No more slaves now” confessed Thembeni Sibeko a Soweto resident to the BBC.
From Sacrifices to Victory
Now back in his home reportedly on life support and while ailing from a lung infection in hospital, South Africa and the World panics at the thought of a World without Nelson Mandela. His bedside support stretches beyond borders. Understandably so, who would ever want to let go of such a man? Once persecuted for his fight to end apartheid in South Africa then jailed for 27 years on Robben Island, Pollsmoor Prison and later Victor Verster Prison and stepped down as President in 1999; Nelson Mandela symbolizes the beauty of the struggles and victory of activism. He was expelled while studying for a Bachelor of Arts Degree at the University College of Fort Hare because he had joined a student protest, he was arrested with 156 other activists and charged with treason in 1956. His life was filled with sacrifices for his country but empowered by his dream of a democratic South Africa and following his release as he was found not guilty, Mandela continued working towards his vision to take his country from an apartheid government to a peaceful multi-racial democracy. His beginnings were marked by a commitment to non-violent protests, determined to change the bitter situation of his people, he co-founded the armed struggle against apartheid “Umkhonto we Sizwe” – Spear of the Nations in 1961. Together with the South African Communist Party, they led a bombing campaign against government targets. These campaigns led to his arrest in 1962 and his conviction of sabotage and conspiracy to overthrow the government. Sentenced to life imprisonment, Mandela spent 27 years in jail until he was elected as the first black President of a traumatized South Africa from apartheid in 1990. Mandela play a leading role in the drive for peace and won the Nobel Peace Prize in 1993.
When is the Right Time to Act ?
The intentional action to bring about social change, political change, or economic justice are the very definitions of activism. Activism can take a wide range of forms; from writing letters to newspapers or politicians, political campaigning, economic activism, rallies, blogging and street marches, strikes, hunger strikes, or even guerrilla tactics. Each type of activism have their strength and weaknesses and can be manifested through and by different agents. You and I are the agents: reformers, citizens, in other situations : rebels. From founding the “Spear of the Nation” to speaking of “Ubuntu” or togetherness, Mandela’s activism was shaped according to the situation he wanted to change. Mandela is both a guide, an inspiration and a honourable political leader. His ultimate goal was to lead South Africa to a smoother transition to peace even following the bitter and painful scars of apartheid. Mandela’s life was not of smooth sailing but he achieved his dream of equality against apartheid. Many valuable lessons can be learned from his relentless dedication to activism. Even as a highly valued political leader, Mandela cleverly used his position to bring about change. He was instrumental in appealing for help to end the civil war in Burundi before the United Nations Security Council in 2000, signing the Geneva Accord for peace in the Middle East in 2005 and promoting awareness for global issues such as AIDS. Depending on the situation, one form of activism may be more effective than another. In this sense, it is crucial to identify which route to embark on to achieve your goal, to effectively advocate and stand for your vision. Identifying to right form of activism is key its effectiveness and outcome.
Mandela – the Inspiration, Madagascar – the Opportunity
As Madagascar faces its current political crisis, it is not the time to lose hope and sulk in desperation. Instead, let us be led by your vision for Madagascar’s future and act towards it. Tailoring our activism to the changing situations to optimise our results. A recent illustration took place on 26 of June in Antananarivo, when in an era absorbed by the influence of social media reigns a group known as « Wake Up Madagascar » – WUM organised a flashmob on the symbolic Independence Day. WUM is a platform that empowers citizens to act for Madagascar led by their visions and perception of a better Madagascar, be it political stability or better living conditions. WUM made headlines for their activism in the streets of Antananarivo, certainly raising awareness that Malagasy are concerned about their destiny and are ready and willing to work to improve it. This exemplary demonstration of solidarity over the country’s future was an activism that was well timed and suited to the situation. Undeniably, we, Malagasy have the opportunity to aspire from the Mandela’s greatness. One does not need to be “great”, “rich” or “important” to make a difference and act for change. Rolihlahla Dalibhunga Mandela was born in a small South African village, grew up in humble homes, thrown out as a student, struggled to finish his academia, left by his first wife because of his activism, against all odds he became one of the greatest African leaders in history and above all made activism his lifetime career. There won’t be a next Mandela, for his achievements will forever be unique. Every aspiration, purpose, dream have valuable merits. Faced with an ongoing political crisis; we, Malagasy are to stand firm and work towards much needed reforms for our country. These changes are achievable in every capacity, be it, as simple as, teaching a child not to throw a wrapper in the street or as bold as calling the attention of leaders to fulfil their social contract.
Pakysse encourages Malagasy to shape their own destiny and pays tribute to an admirable man: Nelson Mandela.
Reporting from the Hague