Reaching the inevitable conclusion

I am sure that it was no big surprise that the negotiations in Maputo for the second part of the Maputo accord would end in failure, especially since you are asking 4 people that have been and would like to be president again. Though all the involved parties agreed that they would decide who would lead the transition by September 4th, I don’t think there is anyone that can be truly hopeful that anything will be resolved by September 4th, especially since they all have their own ideas as to how this transition should be run.

Les Nouvelles had a nice list of the proposals from each of the 4 parties:

Rajoelina: “The Presidency and the Prime Minister’s Office of Transition we must return,”said Andry Rajoelina had when he left the International Conference Center Joaquim Chissano at the end of the day Wednesday, around midnight.

Ravalomanana: “The movement Ravalomanana will never accept the legitimacy of the author of an unconstitutional change in the presidency. We would not be either complicit or responsible for such a bad example for the region and the continent, even for the world. It would be an international validation of the breach of an international convention which is the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights “, the movement had stressed in a statement in Wednesday night.

It remains to be seen whether his position will change if the movement Rajoelina losing ground.

Ratsiraka: After suggesting to appoint a woman as prime minister, he would have proposed the idea to appoint a general officer as chairman of the Transition. Marc Ravalomanana would have joined.

Zafy: The movement has proposed to increase Andry Rajoelina to preside over the transition.

The odd thing that I have noticed about the negotiations is that it would seem that Ratsiraka and Ravalomanana are almost allies, despite the fallout of the political issue occurring in 2002. In the Les Nouvelles article above, it would seem that Ravalomanana would not have a problem accepting Ratsiraka’s proposal. Also in the La Verite article below, they are both in agreement that if Rajoelina were to lead the transition, it would be nothing more than legitimizing Rajoelina’s coup d’etat:

A “package” that was not the taste of Didier Ratsiraka, who reportedly said, who wants to hear in the boardroom, that “a coup is not being appointed Head of State”. What led him to propose that the position of a number of Transition will return to the mainstream Zafy. The Red Admiral was not alone in his assault against Andry Rajoelina, insofar Marc Ravalomanana, who found an “ally” at his side, also put his family in the crossfire to indicate that ” there is no question of granting the leadership of the Nation to a coup. “ And he, in turn, suggest that Didier Ratsiraka was “inducted” Chairman of the Transition.

It almost appears as though it is Ravalomanana/Ratsiraka vs. Rajoelina/Zafy doesn’t it? I am not quite sure why Zafy is siding with Rajoelina for him to lead the transition, but then, nobody really knows why Zafy was involved and what he and his party stood for… and apparently that is to see the TGV succeed in their coup d’etat. At least all the lines are drawn in the sand and we can almost say that we know the stance of each of the 4 parties.

But does it matter? No. It is going to take some sort of disaster to force Rajoelina to agree to having someone else other than himself to head the transition. And from the sounds of it, that point has not been reached and he will continue to go to all negotiations (only to delay sanctions/problems for his government) thinking that only he can lead the transition… which is the heart of the problem.

All negotiations will continue to fail so long as Rajoelina is thinking that he is the man to lead Madagascar out of its current crisis. Does it make sense that the cause of the crisis should be leading and shaping the resolution to the crisis? Not really. I, and many others have said before, there should be a neutral party heading the transition until legitimate elections can be held to let the people decide who should be leading their country.  But so long as Rajoelina continues to run the country, and negotiations call for a person to lead the transitional government… this crisis will never end, unless of course the previously mentioned disaster happens.

That disaster may be the effect of the sactions that (rumour has it) are going to be discussed by the SADC on September 6th and 7th. But even if sanctions are discussed at the SADC meeting, it’s not like we would see instantaneous results… after all, we are talking about a group of politicians in a country other than Madagascar deciding what to do. I don’t think you would see any santions (if they even happen) for at least 1 to 2 months.

And on top of it all… EVEN if Rajoelina was to cave into the demands of the negotiators demands, there is every indication (via various articles/posts) that the military would not respect any agreement reached that does not benefit them. Recently Crazy Commander Charles has stormed the Ivato airport looking for Ravalomanana’s prime minister Manandafy Rakotonirina for saying (and I am not completely sure) something to the effect of “The soldiers of the SADC cannot/should not contain malagasy soldiers”. You can find the article here courtesy of the Madagascar Tribune. In the same article he also threatens the negotiator president Joachim Chissano that he will do something if he sets foot in Madagascar, and that Manandafy should be taken to court for disgracing the Malagasy army.

So it is almost as if Rajoelina doesn’t have any choice… perhaps, as speculated the Malagasy army is really in control of things. So I wouldn’t be holding my breath on seeing any results on September 4th, you will most likely see some grand standing, but not much else. So long as Rajoelina wants to head the transition, Ravalomanana will oppose it, and this will most likely end or stall on negotiations now and going forward.


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