WINDHOEK, 16 JAN (NAMPA) - Four Southern African Development Community (SADC) Heads of State and Government have commended the undertaking by President of Transition in Madagascar, Andry Rajoelina and former president Marc Ravalomanana not to stand in the forthcoming presidential and parliamentary elections.
Namibian President Hifikepunye Pohamba, Jakaya Mrisho Kikwete of Tanzania, and South African president Jacob Zuma of the SADC Organ Troika, as well as Armando Emilio Guebuza of Mozambique welcomed the decision by the two Malagasy leaders.
The presidential and parliamentary elections in that country which has experienced political instability since 2009, is scheduled for May and July 2013.
A media statement issued by the SADC Secretariat on Wednesday said the Heads of State urged the Malagasy people to promote the spirit of reconciliation, peace and stability during the elections and to refrain from all acts of destabilisation in the country.
?We also reiterate that the president, Government, heads of institutions and the entire administrative machinery of the Transition shall remain neutral during the transition period, particularly in the electoral process,? it said.
The four leaders then called upon the Malagasy Parliament of Transition to enact legislation to grant comprehensive amnesty to Rajoelina and Ravalomanana, as well as the Malagasy security forces.
They also urged the Malagasy Parliament of Transition to enact legislation on the status of former Malagasy presidents, adding that the legislation should include relevant privileges and immunities.
The statement noted that the SADC leadership and the SADC Mediator on Madagascar will continue to be seized with the matter.