Today, Madagascar is ranked as one of the world’s poorest nations, with more than two thirds of its population living in extreme poverty.
Marc Ravalomanana and Andry Rajoelina, both former presidents of the former French colony, were banned from running in the 2013 elections due to fears of political violence. Their rivalry created a political crisis in 2009 that hit the country’s tourism sector and deterred investors. Now both have returned in a presidential run-off today.
Both candidates have spent lavishly on campaigning, zipping around on helicopters and distributing handouts to voters.
Madagascans will be hoping violence won’t return when counting is complete and whoever loses does so with dignity.
But when asked how he would react, Mr Ravalomanana’s response was worrying. “I would accept the results,” said the former president. “Within reason.”
In this video we break down the choice facing Madagascans as two old political rivals lock horns once again at the ballot box.