Southern African leaders suspended Madagascar from the SADC regional grouping on Monday and called on its new army-backed president to step down.

The Southern African Development Community said in a communique after a summit in Swaziland that leaders of the group would not recognise Andry Rajoelina, who took power in a move that was condemned as a coup by the international community.

Former Madagascar President Marc Ravalomanana, who quit under pressure from the military, briefed SADC leaders on the political crisis in his country.

The SADC stance further isolated Rajoelina, a 34-year-old former disc jockey. The group did not call for elections. But SADC said it would give Rajoelina time to respond to its position and if he does not it will consider further action.

“The extraordinary summit suspended Madagascar from all community’s institutions and organs until the return of the country to constitutional normalcy with immediate effect,” said a communique.

SADC was quick to take a strong stand on Madagascar, unlike its approach to a political crisis that paralysed Zimbabwe before a power-sharing agreement reached in September.

“The extraordinary summit condemned in the strongest terms the unconstitutional actions that have led to the illegal ousting of the democratically elected government of Madagascar, and call for an immediate restoration of constitutional order in the country,” the communique said.

The African Union suspended the Indian Ocean island on March 20 and told the new administration to hold an election within six months as provided for by the constitution



One Response

  1. Sad to see, but thank you for the updates. Very useful.

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