Ando Ratovonirina

Beats Covered:
Local or Foreign:

Ratovonirina, a reporter and cameraman for the private
broadcaster Radio Télévision Analamanga (RTA), was shot dead by presidential
guards while covering an antigovernment demonstration in the capital, Antananarivo, according to

When soldiers opened fire on opposition demonstrators
marching toward the presidential palace, a bullet struck Ratovonirina in the
head, according to local journalists. The journalist was carrying a notebook
and sound equipment, according to reporter Mirindra Raparivelo, who was filming
the scene for RTA. Raparivelo recalled the hiss of bullets and the smell of
gunfire as he crawled to safety uninjured.

At least 25 people were killed and another 167 injured in
the shootings, according to The Associated Press. The country’s defense
minister resigned to protest the shootings, while the United Nations called for
“a fair process by which those responsible will be brought to justice.”

The shootings came amid a deepening power
struggle between President Marc Ravalomanana and his rival, Andry
Rajoelina, the outspoken 34-year-old mayor of Antananarivo. Rajoelina took control of the government
later in the year.

Ratovonirina, 26, was the first journalist killed in the
line of duty in Madagascar
since CPJ began keeping detailed death records in 1992. He was distinguished
for his passion for journalism since joining RTA in October 2008, according to Editor-in-Chief Andry Raveloson. “He had just completed his communications
studies at the university and wanted to practice,” Raveloson said. He said the
young journalist had also worked for a local newspaper prior to joining the