Outgoing president François Hollande said France was in a much better state now than in 2012
During a visit to a factory in south-western France, Mr Hollande said: “My successor will find that France is in a much better state now than it was at the start of my five-year term.
“I want my successor to build on what I have done, and to do even more for our country.
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He declined to say which candidate he would vote for in the first round of the presidential election
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Eleven candidates have joined the race for the French presidency, and the campaign is now in its final days ahead of the election on 23 April
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"But I do not want him to be tempted – as some candidates obviously are – to demolish, deconstruct and undo everything that my government has done over the course of my presidency.”
When asked which candidate he intended to vote for in the first round of the presidential election on Sunday, Mr Hollande declined to give a straight answer.
Mr Hollande said he hoped his successor would follow in his footsteps and ‘safeguard’ his legacy
He said: “What I know is what I don’t want: a country cut off from the rest of the world and which chooses to distance itself from the European Union. I don’t want a country which abandon its allies and which causes division and chaos when what we need most right now is unity.”
Mr Hollande refused to say who he would be casting his electoral vote for on Sunday, but said that he hoped that his successor would follow in his footsteps and “safeguard” his legacy.