PARIS. – Newly elected French President Emmanuel Macron appointed his first government yesterday, naming veteran Socialist Jean-Yves Le Drian to foreign affairs and European lawmaker Sylvie Goulard as defence minister.Other key figures during his campaign were given senior roles in his slimmed-down 22-strong cabinet, with the mayor of Lyon, Gerard Collomb, named as interior minister and centrist ally Francois Bayrou given the justice portfolio.
Right-winger Bruno Le Maire was named economy minister and is one of three members of the conservative Republicans party in the government along with Prime Minister Edouard Philippe, who was appointed on Monday.
Macron, who had promised to draw in talent from both sides of the political spectrum, also kept on two members of the outgoing Socialist government – Le Drian and Annick Girardin, who was named minister of France’s overseas territories. He also kept his pledge of gender parity. But only one of the top five roles – defence – went to a woman with the 10 other female appointees taking culture, labour, sports and health, among other portfolios.
A star environmentalist Nicolas Hulot, was put in charge of ecology, and a publisher became culture minister – just some of the political newcomers Macron had promised to bring into his team.
Olympic fencing champion Laura Flessel (45) and from the French island of Guadeloupe was named sports minister. – AFP.