Cheick Modibo Diarra has been named interim President of Mali. Diarra is an astrophysicist, former Africa chairman for Microsoft and UNESCO Goodwill Ambassador. He was educated in Paris and Washington, where he also taught mechanical and aerospace engineering. In 1998 he was awarded the African Lifetime Achievement Award, a year after Nelson Mandela received the same award. His experience means he is well-placed to balance rural, agricultural and industrial development in Mali for his party, Rally for Development.
Why is he interim president? Because some junior officers decided to have a coup before the election could happen. This coup has been badly organised from the start. Whatever frustrations the army folk were facing, I really feel they could have waited until after the rocket scientist had a chance to run for President.