Africa > East Africa > Mauritius > Mauritius parliament dissolved

Mauritius: Mauritius parliament dissolved

2014/10/09

Travel and tourism is the major source of revenue for this Indian Ocean Island country, as well a member of the Vanilla Island Organization. As reported in the local media and by Reuters, the Mauritius parliament was dissolved on Monday, paving the way for elections that could lead to changes in the country's constitution.

The ruling Labour party, led by Prime Minister Navinchandra Ramgoolam, wants to split powers between the president, presently a largely ceremonial position, and the prime minister. That would require changes to the constitution.

Those changes will probably be easier to obtain since Paul Berenger, the chief of the opposition Mauritian Militant Movement, switched sides to align with Labour last month.

"In Mauritius, it is the game of alliances that determines the results of elections," said Jocelyn Chan Low, a political analyst. The alliance of the two biggest groups, Labour and Berenger's party, is likely to fasten a large majority, he said.

If that coalition wins and the constitution is amended, Ramgoolam , whose father led Mauritius to independence, is expected to seek the presidency. Berenger is expected to become prime minister.
Mauritius usually holds general elections each five years. But if parliament is dissolved, a vote must be held within 30 to 150 days. Analysts said a vote was likely before the end of the year.

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