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Madagascar: François Goldblatt, Ambassador of France in the Big Island invites the Malagasy not to let the situation deteriorate further




Madagascar: François Goldblatt, Ambassador of France in the Big Island invites the Malagasy not to let the situation deteriorate further
François Goldblatt, Ambassador of France in Madagascar held a frank and direct speech to an audience of invited guests and officials to describe the political crisis the Big Island for four long years, the official ceremonies of the French National Day July 14.
 
François Goldblatt has called the Malagasy not let the situation escalate further and seize the present opportunity to turn the page of a crisis that shakes politically, economically and socially since 2009.
 
"Every nation has vocation to freely choose its values ​​and references, but none can be built without, and once the mask fell, a process of maintaining indefinitely in power can serve as a base for the construction, consolidation and the development of a nation", said by referring to the triptych Liberty, Equality, Fraternity, founder of the French Republic.

The Ambassador of France to Madagascar called all his wishes "the organization of free elections, sincere, transparent, and consistent with the law," and that "all Malagasy waited too long, and that alone will make possible the full reintegration of Madagascar in the international order, while allowing the massive return of donors today paralyzed by political gridlock".
 
François Goldblatt also sent a message to all candidates in the next presidential Malagasy for "authentic democracy is not just the clash of egos, heated block by entourages in ambush on the lookout for benefits the proximity of power is supposed to give them".

Dear candidates in the presidential election, Distinguished members of the Diplomatic Corps, Distinguished Advisor to the Assembly of French Citizens Abroad, My dear compatriots,
 
From this rostrum at every commemoration of July 14, the ambassadors of the French Republic who came before me for 53 years celebrated the special links between France and Madagascar, strong links forged by a long shared history, a story that, both in its quiet moments in its tormented phases was constantly generating political, economic, linguistic and cultural understanding of density unusual.
 
This relationship is as old as it is intense, it falls to all inherit a legacy intertwined, of passion and respect, a complex and multifaceted heritage, in which it is not possible for us to retain the light without its share of shade. This heritage is necessary for all of us, whatever the look, serene or inflamed, severe or benevolent, fair or biased, we wanted to focus on it.

This legacy that neither France nor Madagascar cannot claim to view today, each other, with cold indifference that characterizes most of the time, relations between state and state, relations in the field which is most often face the strategic calculations, commercial interests, alliances of the game short-sighted of reciprocity, in short, it is commonly accepted to call the reason of state.

This legacy that neither France nor Madagascar cannot claim to view today, each other, with cold indifference that characterizes most of the time, relations between state and state, relations in the field which is most often face the strategic calculations, commercial interests, alliances of the game short-sighted of reciprocity, in short, it is commonly accepted to call the reason of state.
 
It is well aware of this heritage, and very particular aspect of the relationship unites it to Madagascar, as France, with sadness, but at the same time, with quiet determination has decided more than a month not to welcome on its territory who are causing the blockage of the electoral process.
 
This choice, difficult and painful, was arrested at the highest level of the French Republic, and is obviously a translation, here, in this July 14, as part of the celebration of the National Day brings us together today at the Residence of France.
This clear choice and assumed gave rise to multiple comments, positive each and other skeptics, and even critical.

Then let us say loudly and clearly: those who have wanted to see in the latest developments in the bilateral relationship, the translation of a cold state rationale arbitrated in Paris, those will be for their expenses.


Blinded by their own reduction schemes, they believed read Machiavelli, where only the universal principles of justice, promise and hope came to speak. Too busy lately to make calculations, they believed spot a forged opponent of the same metal, where, instead, the French Republic strong ideals that we celebrate 14 July, came to reaffirm the strength of its unwavering commitment to the survival of Madagascar.


Expression of fidelity to its values, the reaction of the France furthermore is in perfect accordance with multiple appeals to reason since the beginning of the month of May by the international community. Remember there are no less than eight warnings solemn international institutions, flabbergasted and dismayed by repeated of the Constitution and the Malagasy law violations over the past two months, were addressed to those who lead this country.

Is it necessary to detail, point by point, the contents of public records releases successively by the Troika of the SADC may 10; by the High Representative of the EU for Foreign Affairs and security may 15 policy; by the Council for peace and security of the African Union may 16; by the Secretary-General of the international organization of la Francophonie May 17; by the spokesman for the Secretary-General of the Nations United on 20 may; by the extraordinary Summit of Heads of State of SADC on 26 May, and again, in the same format, June 15; and, finally, recently, by the international contact group met in Addis Ababa on June 26.

Yet, the decision taken by France against those responsible for blocking the electoral process can be understood only in the light of this international condemnation. This approach, in which the authorities French had more choice of engage, after weeks, months and years of effort, as intense as unsuccessful, is also a cry launched by a friend of Madagascar nation, a cry at the height of the intense disappointment aroused in Paris by unfulfilled promises, the renies commitments, and, more broadly, by pathetic developments occurred these past two months in Malagasy politics.

This warning cry succeeds multiple signals sent at the highest level since the beginning of May, by the French authorities, in conjunction with vigorous demonstrations of disapproval issued repeatedly by the international community.

It also wishes to sound like a tocsin, given the political regression, democratic, social and economic strikes, such as the World Bank has again demonstrated forcefully a few weeks ago, the vast majority of the Malagasy population. This cry is finally a cry of despair, justified by the potentially fatal blow on May 3 in the future of Madagascar.
 
For there is one before May 3, and after May 3 Those who pretend to be surprised by the reaction of France and their incredible political and legal events that followed on May 3 do not know, or pretend not to know that we can build without rules and principles without anything. Again, we returned to the message of 14 July and founder triptych, Liberty, Equality, Fraternity, and the French Republic.

Further calculations which some attributed to it, France has too much love and passion for Madagascar to leave the Big Island sinking inexorably into a potentially tragic impasse.
 
The huge mess which we are daily witnesses cannot and should not continue. There is no inevitability that the Malagasy people is condemned to pass a political crisis to another. It is not written that same battle, played and replayed endlessly by those who pre-empt the future of this country must, forever, replace the necessary democratic confrontation projects.
 
Dear candidates in the presidential election, we have hard on your sense of responsibility: genuine democracy is not just the clash of egos, heated block by entourages in ambush on the lookout for benefits the proximity of power is supposed to give them.

Far from this lacks real ambition for the country sterile battle, Madagascar deserves a modern programmatic vision, encompassing the field of political, economic, social and cultural, not a display of bad reasons why those who ruled one day must continue for eternity, to impose themselves or their dynasty.
 
Away from it all, the time must come when instead the UN experts cease to consider the enigma of Madagascar, where teams from the World Bank will have no place to rehash the Malagasy paradox, where all celebrate, finally, after an interminable wait, the Malagasy start.

A month ago, the spokesman of the Quai d'Orsay, precisely and formally called the Malagasy political class as a start, in the best interests of Madagascar and its people. However, the start, hoped by France as by all the partners of Madagascar, cannot be the work of foreign states or international organizations.
 
In any event, with a global average, helped all countries combined, about 50 dollars of official development assistance per capita per year, the authentic development of Madagascar can only result from the only international aid itself conditional on necessary return to constitutional order.
 
If he wants to have the necessary legitimacy and produce lasting results, the essential start to be the work of forces Malagasy, whether individuals, businesses, groups, these forces bright students are the world, the trade unions, university, research, or the private sector.
 
Whether from intellectual circles or they embody the world of work, these forces will have no choice but to deploy here, the same energy and ambition, than those of many other nations, themselves faced for many years the ravages of underdevelopment, have demonstrated.
 
In this respect, it is no longer possible to wait. What was explained or justified at the time of independence is no more.

The Malagasy people cannot understand or accept permanently after 53 years of sovereignty, the per capita income is only one-hundredth of what it is in the northern Mediterranean. He will not tolerate forever that less than 10% of arable land is actually used, and that the country, large as France increased Benelux merely six times lower than those which can work on the French farmers arable land.
 
How long mothers of Malagasy family will they accept that 35% of deaths of children under 5 are associated with malnutrition?

A child under 5 years on two is underweight, and more than half saves stunting how long the fathers of this country be able to tolerate 35% of the rural population are affected by food insecurity, and that half of the population live in urban centers below the poverty line.
 
That 7 out of 10 people do not have access to safe drinking water, and only 4 out of 10 households have no sanitation.
 
While growth has become the norm in today's world is the decline which, unfortunately, has become the hallmark of Madagascar. According to the latest work of the World Bank, of the 155 countries for which a measurement is available, only 19, including the Big Island, experienced a prolonged cumulative economic decline.

Worse, only 11 countries in the world, including Madagascar, combine economic decline and poverty under the World Bank. With over 92% of its population below the poverty line of $ 2 a day, economic underperformance against the Big Island instead it just behind Liberia and the Democratic Republic of Congo, two countries which, unlike Madagascar, if one may say, the excuse of having experienced a prolonged period of violent conflict, but, yet, despite this handicap, were able to resume growth.
 
Overall, properly such a bewildering way, for a country that was promised a bright future on the basis of its human and natural capital, Madagascar is now the worst performer among the nations in the world that are not exposed to an armed conflict.
 
The record of the past five years is particularly telling: more than 8 billion gap between what would have been able to generate the economy and what it actually produced, a worsening of more than 50 percent of the malnutrition acute children in some areas, a 600,000 increase in the number of school children, a marked deterioration of road infrastructure, not to mention the drastic reduction of access to basic social services, the visible weakening of the State law, attacks on media pluralism and neutrality of public service information, as well as the palpable increase in crime.

This table could be supplemented by the statement of multiple other worrying indicators, such as stagnating at a low level of the human development index, Envolée illicit stones and precious woods, the absence of railings at corruption, or dysfunction of the judicial system.

But my point is not to overwhelm this country so dear to the France and the French, the French attached to devote the best Madagascar of their energy and talents, and I see many today in this celebration of July 14. The only ambition of France, both from Paris since the Embassy that I have the honor to lead, is to assist Madagascar to return to the path of democracy and prosperity.

Far from override us that the Malagasy people can, alone, perform for the benefit of its own destiny, our sole ambition is to support it, in the saving process that it must assume, an indispensable also urgent now approach.

This approach is of course, and I did not need to dwell by the Organization of the elections free, sincere, transparent, and consistent with law, that all the Malagasy are waiting too long, and which, alone, will make possible the full reintegration of Madagascar in the international order, while allowing the massive return of donors today paralyzed by the political impasse.

This approach involves the restoration of the credibility of institutions which, at best, have underperformed, and, at worst, misguided sense of their mission. It also passes through the realization of the commitments made regarding the respect of the rule of law. It passes by a sanitation radical of the business climate, allowing Mada­gascar to get out of limbo for classification as "Doing Business" where it is currently, which implies, inter alia, the conduct of a policy of fight against corruption focused on results, and, more fundamentally, a drastic governance improvement.

All that is known, listed, repeated year after year, report after report, but, for now, and for too long, pure loss. By contrast, those who have implemented these precepts with constancy and determination prance now far before Madagascar: where the big island holds the 143rd place this 'Doing Business' ranking, Maurice throne in the 19th century, while the South Africa gets the 39th. But for such progress becomes possible in Madagascar, and they are, it is necessary that the Malagasy people want, intensely, passionately, resolutely, absolutely.
 
On all this, France, together with its partners in the international community, long asked diagnostics and formulated proposals. But there must be on the side of Malagasy, a genuine and lasting appetite for progress and modernization, which justifies the continuation of the commitment of France to the coasts of Madagascar.
 
 In this regard, beyond the 25,000 French present in this country, which form the first French community in sub-Saharan Africa, and that I welcome warmly
again for their involvement, their talent and their tenacity, and not to mention the multiple French NGOs who are here doing invaluable work, you should know that the France puts at the service of the bilateral relationship with Madagascar a device of cooperation in the political, military, economic, cultural and health fields, which has few equivalents across the French diplomatic network.
 
If it is measured by the presence of agents of the State on the Malagasy ground, whether via the Embassy and its multiple services, but also via AFD, the Institute French Madagascar, the Alliance Française, CIRAD, IRD, Institute Pasteur, educational institutions financed by the AEFE, the network of France volunteers, without forgetting the precious contest of the Chamber of commerce and industry France-Madagascar and one of the advisor of foreign trade.

The effort made here by Paris puts us immediately behind the presence deployed by the France in the United Kingdom, and just in front of that observed in Spain, two member countries of the European Union, immediate neighbors of the France with which relations and exchanges are at the height of their weight in world affairs.

Of course, Madagascar is bordered by the Indian Ocean, France a strong France more of a million inhabitants, thanks to Mayotte and Réunion, which are the first neighbors of the big island. Of course, the France shares with Madagascar i
its long maritime border.

Of course, the France aspires to create a zone of trade and prosperity able to give shape to the dream of the Indian ­ocean with Madagascar. Yet, therefore investment of the France in Madagascar that I mentioned a moment ago is today confronted with a double jeopardy.
 
The one known perfectly the public, lies in the worsening these last years of the budget constraint, that you know with what intensity it is rampant.

The other, more insidious, refers us to the prolonged impasse in Madagascar. The temptation indeed, appears among some policymakers in Paris, on behalf of the persistent, decade after decade found gap between the potential of Madagascar and the effective performance of the country, to initiate an exercise of questioning the importance of our device in the Big island and decrease of the volume of our assistance to Madagascar.
 
 However, that the institutional and political crisis continues, the arguments to justify the continuity of the commitment of France to the coasts of Madagascar steal beneath our feet.
 
In this July 14, which ought to precede, ten days only, the first round of the long-awaited presidential elections, I must emphasize that the risk is great, after so many hopes, so many futile waiting, so unsuccessful political investment, and
see the best wishes, including those from France, away from the cause of Madagascar.


The world is vast and countless issues. The attention of the French authorities is picked up by multiple records, often sensitive, sometimes strategic, such as recent months, Mali and the Syria. The big island is perhaps, in its internal mythology, as the center of the world, but it must understand that, while Madagascar continues to lose a precious, and time doing, is desperately to sabotage his chances for a new start, the rest of the world advance very quickly and restructures deeply around new poles, via a restructuring movement in which, due to the political stalemate, Madagascar is unable to participate.

However, the world does not wait. It is not intended to wait, it did not intend to wait, and he cannot, indeed, afford to do so.
 
As to each time, during the long journey that unites the French people and the people of Madagascar, the hand of the France continues to be tense, honestly, sincerely, passionately, on behalf of history and all what attached us one to another.

This outstretched hand is waiting to meet, on the side of Malagasy, creative, dynamic, modern, integrated, energy including Madagascar needs so dramatically. It is high time that this expectation materializes, the primary responsibility for the future of 22 million of Malagasy who deserve, finally, a future at the height of their talent and their hope.
 
If I summarize the issue to its most essential dimension, let me refer to the epitome of the verdict recently delivered by the World Bank about Madagascar: "behind macroeconomic indicators, these are lives of beings humans who suffer." Companies which close, men and women who lose their jobs, families who eat more to their hunger, children who can no longer go to school, babies that stunted growth to irreversible effects. These are millions of people who plunge into poverty to which it will be difficult to escape, and that present risk to the bequeath to their children".
 
Ladies and gentlemen candidates for the presidential election, ladies and gentlemen Members of the diplomatic corps, ladies and gentlemen the advisers to the Assembly of French from abroad, my dear compatriots, do not let Mada­gascar, this country so endearing and so beautiful, so talented, so promoter, so well endowed by nature, so deeply human, let us not Mada­gascar become a lost cause. There is still time.



Antso Rajaona


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