From farming activist to French President. That is the dream of anti-globalisation campaigner José Bové, who’s put his name forward for elections in April. The announcement will cause concern for the Socialist candidate, Segolene Royal, who could possibly lose votes to Bové.
“I’ve decided to accept that my name appears on the voting papers as a common desire to fight the right and give new hope for an alternative on the left,” he said. Bové has battled against the likes of fast-food chains and genetically modified crops. This has led to brushes with the law, and he’s even spent time in prison.
Dismantling a McDonald’s restaurant in 1999 first put him on the front pages; he’s also campaigned against the World Trade Organisation and the European constitution. Some commentators say Bové may yet struggle to get the 500 signatures of elected politicians needed to register for the election. Legal problems may also derail his campaign: a decision is expected from the court of appeal next week on whether he faces prison for destroying GM crops.