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Madagascar's Education Minister Has Been Fired for Planning to Buy $2.2 Million In Candy for Students

The 'bittersweet' move drew anger in a country reeling from the economic burdens brought on by COVID-19.

Madagascar's Education Minister, Minister Rijasoa Andriamanana, has been fired after revealing plans to set aside $2.2 million for candy.

According to Andriamanana the purpose of the indulgent investment was to provide each student with candy to help mask the "bitter taste" of the infamous Covid-Organics tonic, which is being touted as a cure to coronavirus by President Andry Rajoelin.


Andriamanana told reporters that "a purchase of sweets and lollipops" had been made, and that each student in the country would receive three pieces of candy to take after drinking the President-approved herbal tea. Despite Rajoelin's claims that the elixir is "green gold," there is no scientific data proving its effectiveness and it not considered a real cure to the virus.

The exorbitant candy spending drew criticism from the press in a nation where 75 percent of the country lives below the global poverty line, according to statistics from the World Bank, and citizens are trying to cope with the economic burdens brought on by the lockdown. The ill-advised move led to Andriamanana being sacked, and the purchase (likely to the dismay of many young students) being cancelled.

Several Malagasy people have taken to the streets in response to COVID-19 lockdown measures. Clashes occurred Clashes occurred with police during demonstrations when it was reported that they had beaten a street vendor accused of breaking the ban on commercial activities.

So far Madagascar has had 975 confirmed cases of the virus, with 201 recoveries and seven deaths all in the port city of Toamasina.

Film
Photo by Karwai Tang/WireImage via Getty.

Michaela Coel Joins the 'Black Panther' Sequel Cast

The upcoming film, Black Panther: Wakanda Forever, is shaping up.

The sequel to the Oscar-winning Black Panther is only due to debut in July of 2022, but the production is well on its way.

The latest news out of the camp is that Michaela Coel, of I May Destroy You and Chewing Gum fame, has officially joined the cast of Black Panther: Wakanda Forever. Her character details are still under wraps but according to Variety, Coel has already joined director Ryan Coogler at Atlanta's Pinewood Studios, where production started in late June.

Coel joins original cast members Danai Gurira, Letitia Wright, Daniel Kaluuya, Winston Duke, Lupita Nyong'o, Florence Kasumba, and Angela Bassett all reprising their roles. Following the tragic passing of Chadwick Boseman, Marvel reportedly chose not to recast the role of T'Challa.

Read: How Michaela Coel's 'I May Destroy You' Makes Space For Black Creators

"It's clearly very emotional without Chad," Marvel Studios chief Kevin Feige mentions. "But everyone is also very excited to bring the world of Wakanda back to the public and back to the fans. We're going to do it in a way that would make Chad proud."

Michaela Coel's highly-lauded 2020 series I May Destroy You — which she wrote, directed, produced and stared in — received four Emmy nominations.

Black Panther: Wakanda Forever is scheduled for wide release on July 8, 2022.

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