Wednesday , 22 March 2023
"Lack of far sightedness", "amateur game play"… The Public Life Observatory SEFAFI did certainly not go easy on the current ruling power's leaders, said to be leading the country headfirst straight away to a major institutional crisis. A botched up decentralization act is likely to create many more problems than potential solutions... municipal and communal elections are now postponed on the pretext of taking time to complete the division process of the capital city in six communes... several territorial collectivities have to remain in the womb... ... So the public life observatory comes to ask the main question: how long will it take before the current chief of state is brought down by impeachment? The new Constitution entitles this ultimate sanction in response to certain types of violations, including, among other serious infringements, the failure to constitute the High Court of Justice. But the High Constitutional Court is expected to come to the rescue of the President and validate a High Court of Justice just as lame as it is itself.

Putting a brand new though incomplete High Court of Justice in place for the sake of securing the Head of State’s position

Ye be warned, let it be told that the SEFAFI did ring the alarm when it had to: “The ruling power’s refusal to organize and proceed to municipal and communal elections will draw serious consequences behind. For lack of elected communal heads, there will be neither regional elections nor provincial elections before May 2015 – the end of next rainy season – and therefore no Senate basically supposed to represent the decentralized territorial communes at national level” (Constitution, Art N° 81). “The government has been staggering in order to do away with communal elections for a little longer while. It put the blame on the delayed adoption of a particular act concerning the peculiar status of a handful of communes including Antananarivo. The excuse struggles to go down unchallenged, considering that holding the communal elections while holding partial municipal elections in the 4 concerned localities technically proved to be possible.

An emboldened government runs the risk to offend the foreign financial backers, the main fund providers to the electoral process through the PACEM, a project initially supposed to come to a conclusion together with the year 2014. For the sake of keeping a high profile up and securing access to these funds in 2015, the head of the Electoral Commission would like the formal written order to call upon voters to get ready to cast votes to be issued before the end of the year, even if the election eventually begins only in May of the next year. Prime Minister Roger Kolo and his staff actually provide cover to the presidential party’s on going operation. Since the Hery Vaovao party can no more afford to rely on already elected mayors as it did with the parliament’s deputies, the presidential party has to create its own basis from scratch in each commune and as quickly as possible, in order to endow itself as well as its head of state with a shadow of legitimacy, although the main stake remains a much larger control over the state apparatus. In spite of decentralization, the current ruling power does not intend to relinquish its own direct control for so much either.

“It will be impossible to the President to put the High Court of Justice in place the way  the Constitution enjoins him to do within the first 12 months of his term from his inauguration day (art. 166), in other words, at the latest on January 25th 2015. The same constitutional article states in addition to this that every constitutionally complying party is allowed to stress competent institutions for due punishment for failure. The nation might from now on be heading to a major constitutional crisis, because of the lack of far sightedness in our leaders’ amateur game play” explained the SEFAFI. This latest one depends on which side one stands though. The advisors of the President of the Republic, among them a senior advisor to the High Constitutional Court, pieced a trick together to keep their boss clear from impeachment. A law draft concerning the High Court of Justice shall be submitted to the National Assembly in the run of its second regular session. When this draft comes to a formal act, the High Court of Justice will eventually stand before January 25th, 2015. The constitution of its staff is held as secondary. Parliamentarians and senior advisors from the High Constitutional Court do figure out how serious the constitutional crisis might turn out to be if anything from the President’s plans ever backfires, do they not? Still, although the Constitution neglected the emphasis on this point, the High Court of Justice “must” be legally and “fully constituted” from its very first day in charge.