Stay out of polls, Madagascar rivals told
21 May 2013, 13:32
New York – The UN leader Ban Ki-moon on Monday backed
African calls for Madagascar strongman Andry Rajoelina and two rivals to
withdraw from the country's presidential election in July.
Ban criticised a decision by Madagascar's electoral court to
accept the candidacies of Rajoelina, Lalao Ravalomanana, wife of the leader
ousted by Rajoelina, and another former president Didier Ratsiraka.
"The secretary general shares the concerns expressed by
the Southern African Development Community (SADC) and the African Union over
the latest developments in the electoral process in Madagascar," said the
UN spokesperson Martin Nesirky.
SADC has called on the three to withdraw from the election,
which it spent years trying to mediate between rival political factions. The
African Union said on Friday it would not recognise the result if Rajoelina was
Ban believes the move by Rajoelina, Ravalomanana and
Ratsiraka to enter the election race their acceptance by the electoral court
"is in violation of the spirit of the SADC-mediated road map," said
"United Nations assistance to the electoral process is
conditional upon strict adherence by all parties to the road map as the sole
framework for a restoration of the full legitimacy of the government of
Madagascar," the spokesperson added.
Ban called upon all sides to comply with the SADC and
African Union decisions to keep the UN-endorsed plan for elections on track,
Nesirky said. The first round of the vote is scheduled for July 24.
Madagascar has been in deadlock since Rajoelina, a former
disc jockey, ousted arch-rival Ravalomanana in a 2009 coup.
The electoral court accepted the three candidacies even
though Rajoelina registered outside the deadline and neither Lalao Ravalomanana
nor Ratsiraka have lived in Madagascar for the past six months as the election
Rajoelina has already rejected the SADC's call for him to
withdraw. "The Malagasy people must be left to decide who they will choose
to lead the country," he said on May 13.
The Madagascar election is to be discussed by Ban during his
current tour of Africa.