Norbert Lala Ratsirahonana (born November 18, 1938) is a Malagasy politician.
He was born in Antsiranana, Diana Region. He founded and led the Asa Vita no Ifampitsarana (Judged By Your Work) Party, which opposed President Didier Ratsiraka. He and his party were part of the coalition which elected Albert Zafy to the presidency in 1993. Ratsirahonana then became President of the High Constitutional Court.
On May 28, 1996, when the prime minister was deposed by Parliament in a no confidence vote, Zafy appointed Ratsirahonana to the post. Soon afterward, Zafy was impeached and, on September 5, 1996, Ratsirahonana became acting President of Madagascar. A presidential election was held on November 3, 1996, in which Ratsirahonana ran, taking fourth place (behind Ratsiraka, Zafy and Herizo Razafimahaleo) and 10.14% of the vote. Ratsirahonana backed Zafy in the second round, which was held on December 29, but Ratsiraka narrowly prevailed; Ratsirahonana left office as President when Ratsiraka was sworn in, on February 9, 1997. Twelve days later, he also lost his position as Prime Minister when Ratsiraka appointed one of his own allies. The AVI then became the main opposition party, though it became very weak, winning only 13 of the 150 seats in the 1998 parliamentary election.
Ratsirahonana became Chairman of the National Executive Committee of the Panorama Group opposition coalition in September 1997.
Ratsirahonana withdrew from the December 2001 presidential election and endorsed the candidacy of Marc Ravalomanana. He was appointed as the president's "roaming ambassador" under the Ravalomanana regime. In 2006, however, Ratsirahonana resigned from his office; in August 2006 he announced his candidacy for the December 3 presidential election. According to official results, he received 4.22% of the vote and took fifth place. His best result was in Antananarivo Province, where he received 7.14% of the vote.
Amidst the 2009 political crisis, when the military announced that it was installing opposition leader Andry Rajoelina as head of state on March 17, 2009, Ratsirahonana was present as master of ceremonies. Rajoelina then set up the High Authority of the Transition (HAT) as the ruling body, and Ratsirahonana was appointed as one of the HAT's 44 members on March 31, 2009.
- PDF (86.7 KiB), democratie.francophonie.org (French).
- Elections in Madagascar, African Elections Database.
- Philip M. Allen, "Madagascar: Impeachment as Parliamentary Coup d'Etat", in Checking Executive Power: Presidential Impeachment in Comparative Perspective (2003), ed. Jody C. Baumgartner, Naoko Kada, page 91. ISBN 0-275-97927-X
- "Opposition coalition appoints leaders, reaffirms policy", Malagasy National Radio (nl.newsbank.com), September 20, 1997.
- Richard Cornwell, PDF (178 KiB), ISS Paper 68, April 2003.
- "Former Madagascar PM to run for president", Reuters (IOL), August 12, 2006.
- 2006 presidential election results from the High Constitutional Court (French).
- "Army puts Madagascar opposition leader in charge", AP, March 17, 2009.
- Andry Ratovo, "Un Tim et un Grad Iloafo dans la liste", L'Express de Madagascar, April 1, 2009 (French).