Friday, February 10, 2012

Navin Ramgoolam

Navinchandra Ramgoolam, GCSK, FRCP, MP (born नवीन चन्द्र रामगुलाम on 14 July 1947)is the Prime Minister of Mauritius, Minister of Defence, Home Affairs & External Communications, as well as Leader of the National Assembly. Being the leader of the Mauritian Labour Party, he serves as Member of parliament for constituency No. 5 Triolet & Pamplemousses since 1991.

Ramgoolam trained as a doctor at the Royal College of Surgeons in Dublin, Ireland and achieved full registration with the General Medical Council of the United Kingdom in 1977. He later converted to Law by achieving a Master of Laws qualification at the London School of Economics before starting a political career.

After a first candidacy for Parliament in 1991, he returned as 1st Member elected in Constituency No 5. He stood as a prime minister candidate for the Labour Party, but the party was heavily defeated by Sir Anerood Jugnauth with his MSM and alliance party MMM. The Labour Party secured only 3 seats of 70 in the House of Parliament. Jugnauth won 59 seats and the rest went to Rodrigues party. Thus Paul Bérenger became Leader of the Opposition.

Ramgoolam became Prime Minister in the landslide victory of 1995 general elections where the Labour Party in alliance with the MMM won 60 seats. He formed his cabinet and stayed as Prime Minister for a five term mandate. The government collapsed after the MMM left the coalition, but Ramgoolam continued to rule with a small majority. He lost the elections of 2000 and became leader of Opposition again until 2005.

Ramgoolam's Alliance Sociale (a coalition including his own Mauritian Labour Party, the Mauritian Party of Xavier-Luc Duval, and several smaller groups) defeated the governing Mauritian Militant Movement-Militant Socialist Movement coalition in the 2005 general election. Ramgoolam was re-appointed as Prime Minister.

In the 2010 elections, the Labour party made an alliance with the Militant Socialist Movement and the Mauritian Social Democrat Party. His alliance won him a 3rd term as Prime Minister. However, since the MSM left the government in 2011, he only has a small majority of 37 seats against 32 in opposition.

Early Life
Navin Ramgoolam was born to Seewoosagur Ramgoolam, a then practising physician, and his wife Lady Sushil Ramgoolam in Port Louis, Mauritius. He was born when his family was still poor and he grew up in the Capital City of the country. He went to study medicine in Ireland and graduated as a medical practitioner in 1973. He then converted to law in late 1980's and joined the Middle Temple Inn of Court. He worked in different private hospitals in the United Kingdom and was on the point of immigrating to Canada when Sir Satcam Boolell (then leader of Labour Party) and Paul Berenger convinced him to come back to Mauritius and to fight and win the leadership of the party.

Personal Life
Navin Ramgoolam is the son of former Prime Minister and Father of the Mauritian Nation Seewoosagur Ramgoolam and Lady Sushil Ramgoolam. He is married to Veena Brizmohun since 1976. He has a sister and his brother in law is an Advisor to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

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