Magazine article New Internationalist

Introducing. Hery Rajaonarimampianina (HR)

Magazine article New Internationalist

Introducing. Hery Rajaonarimampianina (HR)

Article excerpt

Madagascar's new president, who is reputed to have the longest name of any head of state, achieved something pretty remarkable when he took office on 3 January. HR comes from modest roots and, despite a brief stint as finance minister, is a relative novice to the political class - yet he beat aggressive political veteran Jean Louis Robinson to the post.

The mild-mannered bespectacled former accountant is nothing if not determined. He pulled together his own political party, The New Forces for Madagascar, and speaks calmly of a better future for the Malagasy Republic - Madagascar's official name. Perhaps the Malagasy are just tired of endless recriminations following the 2009 coup, which plunged the country deeper into poverty as sanctions started to bite and donors slashed aid (which makes up some 40 per cent of the government budget). …

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