Andry Rajoelina, who returned to the helm of Madagascar after last week’s hotly-contested election, is one of three politicians to have dominated the politics of the Indian Ocean island nation.
Nicknamed “the disc jockey”, a moniker he earned from his popularity for promoting parties in the capital Antananarivo, Rajoelina burst onto the political scene 11 years ago.
He trounced the party of then President Marc Ravalomanana to become the capital city’s mayor in 2007.
Helped by his own Viva broadcasting channel and strong communications skills, he quickly established himself as the leading voice of opposition to Ravalomanana.
His supporters openly defied the regime with the tacit support of the military, who helped oust Ravalomanana in 2009.
The 44-year-old Rajoelina defended his elevation to the presidential palace on the back of a coup, telling AFP: “It was a popular uprising.”
At the time, Rajoelina, who was then in his mid-30s, struggled to guide the country out of crisis as its unelected leader.
His rivals also accused him of corruption, greed, and turning a blind eye to the pillage of the country’s natural resources, including its precious rosewood forests.
His failings won him the nickname “crayfish” — a crustacean that walks backwards.
Under international pressure, Rajoelina did not contest the 2013 election and backed his victorious former finance minister Hery Rajaonarimampianina.
The two quickly fell out, however, and two years ago Rajoelina vowed to win back office at the ballot box.
Born on May 30, 1974 in Antsirabe, Rajoeliona — a businessman and fervent Catholic — is married with three children.
During the first round of the elections, he took a slight lead over Ravalomanana but has attracted impressive numbers to his rallies, which featured performance artists and fireworks.
Rajoelina has been energetic on the campaign trail, bringing a sense of excitement and change to his rallies.
But his policies have been criticised as unrealistic and foes have questioned how he funded his lavish campaigning.
Amoung promises that drew ridicule from rivals were a proposal to fit prized zebu cows with trackers to battle rustling, and a scheme to convert Tamatave port into a “Malagasy Miami”.
But Rajoelina has dismissed his critics and vowed to transform his deeply impoverished country.
“The situation is catastrophic in Madagascar, I would like to give people hope and pride,” he said.
“I will be a president of the poor people who protects the poor.”
Public officers above 58 years and with pre-existing conditions told to work from home: The Standard
In a document from Head of Public Service, Joseph Kinyua new measure have been outlined to curb the bulging spread of covid-19. Public officers with underlying health conditions and those who are over 58 years -a group that experts have classified as most vulnerable to the virus will be required to execute their duties from home.
“All State and public officers with pre-existing medical conditions and/or aged 58 years and above serving in CSG5 (job group ‘S’) and below or their equivalents should forthwith work from home,” read the document,” read the document.
To ensure that those working from home deliver, the Public Service directs that there be clear assignments and targets tasked for the period designated and a clear reporting line to monitor and review work done.
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Others measures outlined in the document include the provision of personal protective equipment to staff, provision of sanitizers and access to washing facilities fitted with soap and water, temperature checks for all staff and clients entering public offices regular fumigation of office premises and vehicles and minimizing of visitors except by prior appointments.
Officers who contract the virus and come back to work after quarantine or isolation period will be required to follow specific directives such as obtaining clearance from the isolation facility certified by the designated persons indicating that the public officer is free and safe from Covid-19. The officer will also be required to stay away from duty station for a period of seven days after the date of medical certification.
“The period a public officer spends in quarantine or isolation due to Covid-19, shall be treated as sick leave and shall be subject to the Provisions of the Human Resource Policy and procedures Manual for the Public Service(May,2016),” read the document.
The service has also made discrimination and stigmatization an offence and has guaranteed those affected with the virus to receive adequate access to mental health and psychosocial supported offered by the government.
The new directives targeting the Public Services come at a time when Kenyans have increasingly shown lack of strict observance of the issued guidelines even as the number of positive Covid-19 cases skyrocket to 13,771 and leaving 238 dead as of today.
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Principal Secretaries/ Accounting Officers will be personally responsible for effective enforcement and compliance of the current guidelines and any future directives issued to mitigate the spread of Covid-19.
Uhuru convenes summit to review rising Covid-19 cases: The Standard
The session will among other things review the efficacy of the containment measures in place and review the impact of the phased easing of the restrictions, State House said in a statement.
This story is being updated.
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Drastic life changes affecting mental health
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