Madagascar Profile

Madagascar Profile




The island of Madagascar was a French colony until 1960 when it gained its independence from what was widely considered harsh rule, including a bloody suppression of a local uprising against French rule in 1947 emboldened by the realisation that Europeans, particularly the French, were not actually invincible as the Second World War had demonstrated. However, as with many of the newly emerging African republics, Madagascar replaced one form of unwanted rule with a succession of unstable governments, coups and assassination attempts at odds with a military aim of creating a 'socialist paradise' with firm ties to the Soviet Union and the spurning of ties with the west.

Around 70% of the island's population live in rural communities, normally in wooden, thatched roofed homes, making them particularly susceptible to the cyclones, storms and the resultant flooding that have been a dominant feature of Madagascar's recent history. Ironically, in the south of the island, recent years have seen severe droughts leading to water shortages and crop failure. For those who wonder why water simply cannot be shipped from the north, it is easy to forget that this is a poor country with limited resources but the size of Luxembourg, Belgium and France combined. Today fishing and forestry engage around 80% of the population, however there are concerns that the cutting down of the island's forests, mainly for firewood, are having a longer term effect, causing erosion with implications for the island's food supply and destroying habitats for the island's animal population, half of which are found no where else on earth.

Madagascar Country Profile

When President Marc Ravalomanana was ousted from office in 2009 after he dismissed dismissed Andry Nirina Rajoelina as mayor of the capital Antananarivo, a period of international sanctions was established, spurred on by the EU who decided to suspend humanitarian and development aid to Madagascar in 2010 at frustration at the lack of any tangible progress towards democracy after a fifteenth month transitional agreement was agreed in the summer of 2009 but failed to be implemented. Rajoelina ruled as head of an interim authority however ceded power to President Hery Rajaonarimampianina in 2014 following an election in late 2013 that was deemed fair and transparent by the international community. Rajoelina however stood again and went on to win the 2018 election with 55,66 % of the vote and was inaugurated President of Madagascar on 19 January 2019. Despite this win, Madagascar has continued to be plagued with political uncertainty and turmoil with the island itself being under a lockdown since the Covid-19 pandemic hit and its southern region is in the grips of a famine. There have been recent attempts to assassinate the president and head of the national police force. Madagascar in 164th place out of 189 countries and territories in 2019 when ranked in terms of life expectancy, literacy, access to knowledge and the living standards of a country.

Madagascar Profile: Volunteer in Madagascar

African Volunteer Work: Madagascar

Check out all the latest fee paying and free African volunteer work placements and charity work job opportunities abroad with local projects and volunteering organisations in Madagascar.

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Madagascar Profile: Madagascar History

Madagascar History

A brief history of the Republic of Madagascar from its ancient history to its royal family, colonialism and its recent history following independence.

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Madagascar Profile: Life in Madagascar

Life in Madagascar

An informational article about daily life in Madagascar, focussing on how children live there and the challenges they face.

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Madagascar Profile: Madagascar Poverty

Madagascar Poverty

Facts and figures about poverty in Madagascar where some 85% of the rural population live in abject poverty.

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Madagascar Profile: Madagascar Children

Madagascar Children

About life for children in Madagascar in facts, information and video where most live in poverty in rural areas together with details of projects and programs to support children in Madagascar.

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Madagascar Profile: Street Children

Madagascar Street Children

Find our more about the issue of street children living, working and begging in Madagascar and see what you can do to help.

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Madagascar Profile: Madagascar Images

Madagascar Images

Explore Madagascar in a series of pictures, images and video including the Malagsay topography and wildlife.

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Madagascar Profile: Madagascar Water

Madagascar Water

A video documentary about the challenges of safe drinking water in Madagascar, where only 11% have sanitation and a drought is devastating the country.

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Madagascar Profile: Madagascar Quiz

Madagascar Quiz

Take our online Madagascar trivia quiz and see how much you know about Madagascar together with some interesting facts about the country.

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Madagascar Profile: Madagascar Education

Madagascar Education

Facts and figures about the Madagascar education system together with a video of Madagascar school children in their classroom.

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Madagascar Profile: Antananarivo Profile

Antananarivo Profile

A complete profile of Antananarivo, capital city of Madagascar including Antananarivo information, facts, pictures and tourist attractions.

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Madagascar Profile: Ivato International Airport

Madagascar Airport

Make a virtual landing at Ivato International Airport some eleven miles outside Antananarivo, the capital of Madagascar.

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Madagascar Profile: Child Sponsor Madagascar

Child Sponsor Angola

Details of how to sponsor children in Madagascar with Malagasy child sponsor organisations, charities, programs and projects.

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Madagascar Profile: Madagascar Map

Madagascar Map

Use this Google Earth satellite map of Madagascar to explore and take a virtual tour of Madagascar in Africa and zoom in on places of interest in Madagascar.

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Madagascar Profile: Madagascar News

Madagascar News

Read all the latest and breaking news from Madagascar here at our Malagasy news profile page. Updated daily.

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