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Madagascar News Forums The Transformation of Antananarivo Reply To: The Transformation of Antananarivo


“Testimony of patient efforts of the spiritual, economic, social order, promise of a better future for all the inhabitants of this country, the Franco-Malagasy Progress Fair-exhibition, despite the revolt – because of the revolt, Is not the fruit of rash optimism, but rather a realistic, constructive manifestation and also, on the part of all, an act of faith. “
The physical and moral wounds caused by the repression during the events of March 1947 are not yet healed, as the French General Government is organizing a large-scale fair that lasts four weeks (5 October-7 November).
Challenge or paradox at a time when the death knell of colonial domination in the world For High Commissioner Marcel de Coppet, it is neither the one nor the other because “this fair is precisely for To their meaning
The painful events we have just experienced. ” And is it a misunderstanding or a total contempt for the profound meaning of this uprising? In any case, M. de Coppet gives a very French version of it, while insisting on the consequences of “the revolt that is ending” and which is a “Serious thing”. “It cost a lot of human lives. The destruction, the ruins will be long to take. A climate of uneasiness is born that time alone can make disappear. “
Directly attacking “fomenters” who are only “a handful” of ambitious and
Intriguers desirous of re-establishing the privileges of another age for their own benefit, the Governor-General treats their partisans as mere executants, “fanatized individuals belonging to primitive tribes, of whom Gallieni had already been able to measure xenophobia.” He refers here to the Menalamba, the first insurgents (1897) to be called
“Fahavalo” (enemies) or rebels by the French.
According to the Governor General, “the whole civilized island has remained calm” since it is in the heart of the forest, in regions where “geographical factors” make French penetration difficult, that “superstitions,
Sorcery, ritual oaths have been able to provoke the barbarity – the capital of the insurrection – without which the criminal designs of the insurgents would have remained in vain “.
And to bring doubtless comfort of hope to “the vast majority of Malagasy,” he adds: “But despite the crimes inspired by some insane criminals, despite the odious machination hidden in the shadows by ambitious without Scruples, 29 March 1947 should not represent, does not represent a solution of
Continuity in the work undertaken here by France, or an irremediable break between the French and the vast majority of the Malagasy. We mourn our dead, but stronger than all rebellions, life continues, creative activities continue and France without which Madagascar would not be on the way to becoming a great modern country, France remains. “
Beyond its purely economic aspect, the objective of the Fair, which is really a success, is to demonstrate how wrong the “insurgents” are, as the speech of M. de Coppet suggests. “It will have enabled the populations of the island to become aware of the achievements achieved in half a century of Franco-Madagascan colonization. And to bring an optimistic note about the future of the relations between the two countries, between the two peoples, he affirms that this fair gave Malagasy confidence in themselves.
“Considering the synthesis of their efforts, they realized what a step they had taken on the road to
Progress, on this road where France will continue to guide them with the constant concern to make them
Find in themselves, in the soil of their Homeland as well in the riches of their language, original personal values, representative of their natural genius, of that soul which will soon discover the various modes of its expression. “
Moreover, “despite the financial difficulties due to the Second World War,” the Metropole has decided to make the necessary sacrifices in our favor “. In 1947, it made an exceptional contribution of $ 2,100,000 for the purchase of fabrics. An equivalent allocation in pounds sterling is also allocated, as is a quota of $ 8,400,000 for the first six months of the year.
“For 1948, we have established an import program which amounts to 275,000 tons of goods corresponding, in the currency of account, to $ 81 million. “