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Long before colonization of the Great Island, France, through its explorers, has already begun to explore the country in order to be able to make concessions. In 1897, more precisely on 16 July, the President of the French Republic, Felix Faure, took two decrees implemented by General Joseph Simon Gallieni by a decree of 23 August. The first concerns the settlement of land ownership in Madagascar, the second concerns the organization of the public domain.
“And General Gallieni supported these regulations by Circular No. 243 of July 20, 1897, which dispossessed the natives entirely of their ancestral lands and forced them to emigrate to other regions” (Ambalavelona or the anti-colonial insurrection in The north-west of Madagascar in 1898 “by Cassam Aly Ndandahizara).
However, it reads “indigenous reserves”. You are not unaware of the causes of animosity between colonists and natives being sustained by the incursions of cattle into settler lands. Therefore, you must reserve for the natives vast grounds to avoid difficulties which I point out to you, and you will establish them according to the number of the head of cattle which will be indicated to you by the fokonolona and the wealth of the pasture of the region . “
The colonists then abused these recommendations and the Antimoro, guardians of their concessions, seized the oxen that grazed nearby and pushed them into the concessions: the animals thus became property of their bosses. It is enough to make the natives flee to the mountains with their flocks.
Mount Tsaratanàna becomes the refuge of the Sakalava of the Sambirano who meet there the Antankarana of the plain of the Mahavavy and the Tsimihety of the region of Ankaizina, also victims of newcomers called “colonists”. “Their names were Lesueur, Creux, Courtois, Rougemont, Mersannes, Castel, Giraud, Millot, Desloy, Bras, Gourbel, Bleusez, Ardoin, & c. “
General Gallieni issued other orders. No. 1110 of 4 November 1897 deals with the organization and establishment of forest conservation services. No. 1111 of the same day created at Diego-Suarez and Nosy Be forestry sub-consortia offices where several activities will have to be carried out: registration of the immovables (constitution of title, conservation of documents relating to buildings) Duties and charges on the registered properties.
However, the tidal wave of settlers did not stop at the names mentioned above. The Ankaizina, the Mahavavy and the Sambirano in the Northwest are praised as the richest regions of Madagascar.
According to Paul Locamus, in his book “Twenty Years in Madagascar”, “the bay of Ampasindava offered resources that could not be found anywhere else. The Ankaizina is the large reservoir that supplies oxen for consumption throughout the northern part of Madagascar. The plains of Mahavavy and Sambirano contain herds of more than 10,000 head of cattle; Poultry abounds everywhere; The fruits there reap a profusion; We can say that it is the region of Madagascar where every ship can, more easily, refuel.
And to continue: “Error of having made Antananarivo the capital, mistake the development
Of the city of Tamatave, artificial cities destined to disappear; Mistake of fortifying Diego-Suarez; The construction of the dry dock, etc. “
As a result, the North has become the most colonized region of Madagascar and Paul Locamus is the beneficiary of “Madagascar’s largest concession awarded by the President of the French Republic, Émile Loubet.