In the aftermath of the referendum and simultaneous failed putsch, a veritable waltzes of arrestations and investigations are shedding a sad shadow on the island, says this Global Voices post. The referendum lowers the presidential age to 35 years old (from 40 years old), allows Andry Rajoelina (now 36 years old) to participate in presidential elections, to stay in power indefinitely during the transitional period, however long that period becomes.

Military officers in Madagascar say they have taken over the island nation. Col Charles Andrianasoavina, who made the announcement, was one of the officers behind a coup that brought Andry Rajoelina to power last year.

Soaring demand in China and political unrest in Madagascar are fuelling illegal logging for hardwoods in the African nation, a report concludes. Global Witness and the Environmental Investigation Agency (EIA) talked to loggers, government agencies and traders to compile their report. In China, they discovered beds on sale for $1m, made from Madagascan wood.

Although 70 per cent of Madagascar’s 20 million people are peasants, the country depends on imports for 20 per cent of its staple food, rice. Also, 30 percent of Madagascar’s land can be used for agriculture, but only 4 percent of the land is actually farmed. The government has neither the budget nor any effective strategies to address these problems. “All we do is hope for investments and technology transfers from overseas,” says Rakotoson Philibert, secretary-general of the Ministry of more

The United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) has warned that Madagascar is at risk of a crop-eating locust plague, potentially jeopardizing the livelihoods of 460,000 rural families. An unknown number of immature swarms of Malagasy Migratory Locust have moved out of the country’s south-western corner, where they are usually contained, and have spread to the east and north.