Jean-Pierre Soisson, former mayor of Auxerre and former minister, is dead

The former minister, deputy and mayor of Auxerre was a singular personality of the Ve Republic. Few politicians can boast such an itinerary. Center right man, Jean-Pierre Soisson, frequented all the powers, in Yonne, Burgundy and Paris. He died Tuesday February 27 in Auxerre, at the age of 89, his family announced to Agence France-Presse. “Jean-Pierre Soisson died peacefully, surrounded by his family today”declared his son David Soisson adding that the former political leader “had been battling cancer for many years”.

Called into right-wing and left-wing governments, he was secretary of state or minister of Valéry Giscard d’Estaing under the authority of Jacques Chirac and Raymond Barre, then of François Mitterrand under that of Michel Rocard, Edith Cresson and Pierre Bérégovoy. From 1968 to 2012, he was elected deputy for Yonne ten times. He was mayor of Auxerre for twenty-seven years and presided over the Burgundy region twice.

The figure of Jean-Pierre Soisson remains attached to the city where he was born on November 9, 1934, and which he embodied for years, alongside the coach of the Youth Association football team auxerroise (AJA), Guy Roux. The people of Auxerre have long had the custom of “going to Soisson” when they go to the department store. renamed to Jacques, the father, then “at Jean-Pierre” when they had an appointment with the son, at the town hall. Amène, the elected official had easy informality and maintained familiar links with many Auxerrois and Poyaudins. Puisaye, a bocage land which contributed to his political rise, always considered him as one of its sons.

Close to Giscard

Born into a family of notables, Jean-Pierre Soisson will carry high the banner of his family. After Sciences Po, he was admitted to the ENA, in the Lazare-Carnot class (1959-1961). Mobilized during the Algerian War, he served as an officer in the 3e regiment of African hunters under the orders of Colonel Antoine Argoud who will join the ranks of the OAS.

Returned to civilian life, the young enarque became an auditor at the Court of Auditors then joined the cabinet of the then Minister of Agriculture, Edgar Faure, who would become his master in politics. His path is marked out.

Elected for the first time as deputy for Yonne during the legislative elections organized in the aftermath of May 68, Jean-Pierre Soisson would walk the corridors of power until 2012.

In 1971, he became mayor of Auxerre. Under Giscard d’Estaing, to whom he is close, he held the position of Secretary of State several times: universities, professional training, youth and sports. He also accompanied the political upheavals of the time and participated in the founding of the Republican Party, the Union for French Democracy, the Reform Movement, etc.

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