Madagascar’s presidential poll scheduled for Nov. 7

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Madagascar’s recently appointed Prime Minister Christian Ntsay has announced that the island nation will head to the polls on 7 November to elect a new president, with a second round – if needed – scheduled for 19 December.

The announcement comes on the back of a court order that ruled the poll should be held by October.

The Malagasy presidential elections have been surrounded by controversy as incumbent President Hery Rajaonarimampianina earlier this year introduced a new law which barred key opposition candidate Marc Ravalomanana from running.

That law sparked protests that turned violent, and was later scrapped by the Constitutional court.

In a bid to avert a political crisis, the constitutional court ordered the president to form a government of national unity and hold elections.

Rajaonarimampianina, elected in 2013, has not yet announced whether he will run for a second term this year. However, there are reports that former heads of state Andry Rajoelina and his predecessor Marc Ravalomanana will run.

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