Turmoil within the Malagasy Army
“Tapina ny dômy …” (free translation: the game is over) a friend said when he heard about the news of the sacking of the HAT minister of defense, General Noel RAKOTONANDRASANA, on Wednesday April 07th, evening. It was a real surprise for everybody, the General Noel RAKOTONANDRASANA was among the military officers who brought Andry Rajoelina on power. This latter trusted him as the key man who can control the Malagasy Army. Since last week, the Malagasy Army is in a kind of unspecific turmoil which triggered intense rumours of Military coup or the establishment of a Military administration … Since three weeks from now, Andry Rajoelina remains very quiet and such (forced?) attitude leads the political observers to the conclusion that he is not willing to lead the country anymore. The Malagasy opposition (mainly the”Madagasikara movement”) assumes that Andry Rajoelina does not make decision anymore and just signs what needs to be signed …
Noel RAKOTONANDRASANA is kicked out
On Wednesday April 07th, after a cabinet meeting with Andry Rajoelina, the HAT prime minister of defense, Colonel Camille Vital announced in a press conference held in his office in Mahazoarivo that he was now in charge of the ministry of defense.
The main charge against him was the deep suspicion of conspiring to make a coup. Actually, there have been several official and underground meetings between officers of the Malagasy Army, the Gendarmerie included. He (the former HAT minister of defense) was reported to be always present and even to be main instigator during these meetings. When asked about these meetings, he said that as he was the minister of defense, he had the right to gather Military officers. The HAT prime minister, Colonel Camille Vital, did not really appreciate the fact that his minister of defense organized Military meetings, whatever the motives are, without informing or asking for his opinion or consent. “As prime minister, I am the first person in charge of defense and national security” This latter said during his press conference on Wednesday April 07th. This lack of trust between militaries also led to intense rumours about the imminence of a massive attack against the presidential palace of Ambotsirohitra. Since Thursday April 01st, the security of the presidential palace of Ambotsirohitra has been doubled.
The HAT prime minister declared that among his priorities as minister of defense is to implement the resolutions of Military assizes held on April 2009 at the International Conference Center, Ivato. The factual truth is that, since the beginning of the coup, the untity of the Army is not anymore the same. This situation is also worsened by a “mercenary spirit”: the Militaries (Gendarmes included) want more pay increase, more allowances, more bonuses for taking part into the “tolona” (revolution) whereas they always declared during the hot period of the crisis that the Army remained neutral.
On Thursday April 08th, the General Noel RAKOTONANDRASANA tried to meet with Andry Rajoelina but he was turned back at the entranceof the presidential palace of Ambotsirohitra. After that, he held a press conference at the minister of defense in Ampahibe in which he declared that he refused to hand over. He said that he needed to consult with the high Army officers and close collaborators before making a decision. “If the militaries decided that I have to go, I will leave …” he said. “If the prime minister Colonel Camille Vital wants this ministerial seat, he can come here and try to take it by his own … if he dares” he added with a theatening smile. He said that the real motive of the meetings that he has organized was to look for a crisis settlement plan. According to him, it was feasible to find an appropriate crisis settlement plan between Malagasy people.
Since Thursday April 08th, the premises of the minister of defense in Ampahibe were becoming an entrenched camp.
The Colonel Camille Vital becomes Brigadier General
On Wednesday April 07th, just after the cabinet meeting he held with Andry Rajoelina in Ambotsirohitra presidential palace, the Colonel Camille Vital, HAT prime minister, was promoted to the rank of Brigadier General, by the General Patrick Monibou. What has he done to deserve such promotion? Nobody knows … May be it is easier for a General to lead the minister of defense … Camille Vital before being appointed as prime minister of the HAT, was already retired from the Army. He applied for an early retirement to be able to set up a security company in Toliara in the last days of 2002. So how possible is it for a retired colonel to be promoted General ? Posthumously may be …
There is already a group of officers who has denounced such irregular promotion.
The Lieutenant Colonel Charles Andrianasoavina in the red eye of the cyclone?
According to some indiscretions, the co-director of the FIS (Special Force of Intervention) is among the officers who are suspected for having prepared a coup against Andry Rajoelina.
On Saturday, he was banned from entering the presidential palace of Ambotsirohitra.
According to him, there was a conspiracy to put him down within the FIS. Actually, there are several problems of management and leadership between him and the Lieutenant Colonel Lylison René, co-director of the FIS. During an interview to local journalists, the Lieutenant Colonel Charles Andrianasoavina took the example of the elements from the CAPSAT (military camp where the coup against Marc Ravalomanana started), assigned to work for the FIS, that he has been obliged to fire. Few days after, the Lieutenant Colonel Lylison René has reinstated the all.
Nowadays, he stays in his house with several armed militaries and gets ready for a hyphothetical attack against him.
Yep … it’s true … “Tapina ny dômy“