Following the death of Prime Minister Joel Rakotomalala in a helicopter crash in July, the President of the Malgache Republic M.
Following the death of Prime Minister Joel Rakotomalala in a helicopter crash in July, the President of the Malgache Republic M. Didier Ratsiraka named M. Justin Rakotoniaina to the vacant post. Shortly afterwards, the composition of a new Cabinet was also made public.
SYNOPSIS: The members of the new Cabinet, most of whom had held Ministerial office before, went to the Government Palace for their official presentation to the Head of State.
Many Ministers remained at their posts or simply switched jobs. There were only four newcomers named, among them Mr. Bruno Rakotomavo, a former Information Ministry official, who becomes Foreign Minister. Observers say that continuity appears the main feature of the new Government, and President Ratsiraka later asked the new Ministers to emphasise mutual co-operation.
Shortly afterwards a mysterious fire broke out in Prime Minister Rakotoniaina's official residence, the history Andafiaviatra Palace, built over a hundred years ago for the then king of Madagascar.
The fire was first detected in the small hours, and firemen were soon called out to control it. No-one was hurt in the blaze, which nevertheless caused considerable damage to the wooden structure of the handsome old Palace.