Why has the black Minister of Education been the subject of controversy in France? What does Macron say?

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In France, as far-right parties reacted to President Emmanuel Macron’s appointment of Pap Ndiaye, who is of black descent, as Minister of Education and Youth, Macron once again argued that he was right in his election.

Cumhurbaşkanı Macron ve Eğitim Bakanı Pap Ndiaye

Macron, who took Pap Ndiaye on his visit to Marseille before the general elections, once again reacted to the statements of far-right parties in his speech here, arguing that “national unity can be built by respecting differences.”

President Macron said: “I have decided to appoint Pap Ndiaye as a minister because he is a person who has shown what I believe should be throughout the life and career of the schools that the Republic has built. Minister Ndiaye deserved this post with his work, his academic career and his interest in equal opportunities.”

Ndiaye, whose father is Senegalese and mother is French, is known for his expertise in African and American history and minority rights.

Ndiaye, who has entered politics in recent years, has been at the forefront of his speeches before becoming a minister while advocating France’s confrontation with its colonial history and against the rejection of violence and discrimination by the police.

What did far-right politicians say about the black minister?
Marine Le Pen, who lost the presidential election to Macron in the second round, called it a “terrible choice” to get Ndiaye to become a minister.

Eric Zemmour, the other far-right candidate who was eliminated in the first round of the presidential election, accused the new minister of distorting the facts of French history, claiming that Ndiaye had confused the history of France with the history of the United States.

Le Monde: Controversy shows that racism persists in the country

An editorial in Le Monde earlier this week expressed the view that the backlash against Ndiaye’s appointment as minister illustrates the fact that racism is still being fought in France.

“The fact that the nomination of a black man for a senior ministerial post has fueled so much controversy shows that apart from an attempt to politically wear down the President, France still has a long way to go in combating racism,” the editorial said.

Ndiaye said he would not respond to criticism of himself and would focus solely on his job and responsibilities at this time.


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