The President of the Republic of Seychelles, Mr. Wavel Ramkalawan, will attend the 42nd Ordinary Summit of SADC Heads of State and Government, to be held on 17-18 August 2022 in Kinshasa, Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC).
The Summit is held under the theme: "Promoting Industrialization through Agricultural Processing, Mineral Beneficiation, and Regional Value Chains for Inclusive and Resilient Economic Growth."
During that summit, an important decision will be the final procedures for the transformation of the SADC Parliamentary Forum into the SADC Parliament.
The president will leave the country on Tuesday, August 16, and will return on Thursday, August 18, 2022.
While he is in Kinshasa, the president will meet with members of the Seychellois community in that region.
Members of the public with relatives in the DRC can contact the Office of the President through the office of the Chief Press Secretary or the Diaspora Unit at the Department of Foreign Affairs to receive details of the meeting.
During the absence of the President Ramkalawan, his duties and responsibilities will be carried out by Vice President Ahmed Afif.
The President of the Republic, Mr. Wavel Ramkalawan attended the launch ceremony of the Operationalization of the National Integrated Emergency Management Plan (NIEMP), which took place at the Savoy Seychelles Resort & Spa, Beau Vallon yesterday morning.
This event has been facilitated by the World Bank with the Government of Seychelles, with the support of the Climate Risk and Early Warning Systems (CREWS) Initiative.
The Crews Initiative; is a specialized agency of the United Nations whose mandate covers weather, climate and water resources.
The World Bank delegation is conducting a 2-week mission from August 1 to 12, 2022 in Seychelles to provide technical assistance to the Disaster Risk Management Division (DRMD).
World Bank technical assistance will focus on improving emergency coordination at the Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDA) level and turning early warning into effective early action.
There will be training sessions covering two main components; that is, the training of specialized support personnel who will be the Focal Point dedicated to Disaster Risk Management (DRM) of the key MDAs to support decision makers for the coordination of DRM.
These Focal Points are expected to eventually lead the development of Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) and Contingency Response Plans for their MDAs. Second, build the capacity of key decision-makers within MDAs to better understand their roles in supporting disaster response and recovery operations.
In his opening speech, the Minister of the Interior, Mr. Errol Fonseka, affirmed that the National Integrated Emergency Management Plan outlines the path to follow so that all the actors develop their sectoral plans according to their functions as lead agencies and support in five functional areas that includes Rescue and Security, Health, Humanitarian Services, Infrastructure and Essential Services, and Emergency Management.
He called on all stakeholders to see the urgency of implementing the development of plans and SOPs for Risk Reduction based on the existential changes that are happening around the world and that have a direct impact on the security of the country.
“It is true that the ownership for the development of Risk Reduction Plans and SOPs does lie with the respective portfolios, however, I hasten to add that at DRMD, we will be at your side at all times to help you in your development.
These functions will need to be put in place to meet the government's expectations of reducing disaster risks by implementing an effective collaborative approach to reduce the effects of multi-hazard events,” the Minister said.
“Its objective is to strengthen emergency preparedness for an effective response at all levels and thus contribute to the implementation of the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction 2015-2030 Priority 4: Improve disaster preparedness for an effective response and 'Build Back Better' in recovery, rehabilitation and reconstruction," he added.
World Bank Task Force Leader, Ms. Keren Charles, reiterated that the main focus of technical assistance is to improve emergency coordination at the ministries, departments, and agency levels by turning early warning into effective early action.
“Training sessions to empower specialist support staff who will be key MDA Disaster Risk Management (DRM) Dedicated Focal Point and key decision makers within MDA will be provided with insights to better understand their roles in supporting to the disaster response and recovery operation,” said Ms. Carlos.
During the ceremony, there were also remarks from the Director General (DRMD), Mr. Robert Ernesta, the Head of CREWS by Video, Mr. John Harding, the Seychelles Risk and Resilience Requirements High Level Overview Presentation and the Disaster Case Study by Senior Disaster Risk Management Consultants (World Bank) Mr. Paul Hayden (World Bank).
Also present at the ceremony yesterday morning was the Vice President of the Republic of Seychelles, Mr. Ahmed Afif, Speaker of the National Assembly of Seychelles.
Honorable Roger Mancienne, Ministers and DRMD team.
“We are neighbors by proximity, but friends and partners by choice. Therefore, it is of crucial importance that our two countries continue to take advantage of all available opportunities to further strengthen and diversify our partnership," said President Wavel Ramkalawan while proposing a toast in honor of His Excellency Uhuru Kenyatta, President of the Republic. of Kenya, at a banquet held at the Eden Bleu during the latter's first State Visit.
The president also paid tribute to the late father of President Kenyatta; the founding president of Kenya, Mzee Jomo Kenyatta, and expressed his respect and appreciation for what he has achieved for the African continent.
President Ramkalawan reiterated the importance of this state visit and what it means for the people of Seychelles and Kenya in terms of bilateral relations and underlined that the discussion has shed light on areas where bilateral and regional engagements could be further cemented in various sectors. . There he made a special call to the private sector to take advantage of this opportunity and to implement the signed agreement.
"Your visit to Seychelles testifies to the importance we attach to our relations. It provides us with an opportunity to reflect on the long-standing friendship between our two sister countries. A friendship built on solid foundations, shared values, common ambitions and mutual aspirations. Also it is an affirmation of our political will to build on that friendship and deepen it, all in the interest of our two peoples,” said President Ramkalawan.
As President Kenyatta prepares to step down as President, President Ramkalawan again expressed his admiration for his leadership and that Seychelles as a country will continue to need his support and guidance.
“My dear Uhuru, my brother, my friend and the leader of such a great nation, as you prepare to step down from the presidency and hand it over to your successor, tonight I want to reiterate our respect for your leadership and wish you well. We look forward to his support and guidance. You have never been afraid to take on new challenges. We know that Kenya will need you, but remember that the world and the little Seychelles will also need your guidance. We look forward to welcoming you back to our shores. From now on you are also our ambassador. Blessings for the future,” he said.
In proposing his own toast to the long life and health of HE Wavel Ramkalawan, the wealth and prosperity of the people of Seychelles; and before the promise of fraternal relations, President Kenyatta commented: “Seychelles is a country with gigantic possibilities for Kenya and the region”.
Reiterating Kenya's commitment to convene the inaugural session of the Joint Commission for Cooperation (JCC) between Kenya and Seychelles as soon as the dates have been mutually agreed upon, President Kenya commended Seychelles for the critical role it is playing in the blue economy and on issues related to climate change. In addition, to the important role that Seychelles played in the fight against drug trafficking, terrorism and the fight against piracy in the Indian Ocean.
“I am pleased to note that Seychelles is a key champion of the blue economy as an important pathway to sustainable economic development in Africa. I applaud the various efforts your government has spearheaded on climate change and the blue economy."
Regarding the maritime and shipping industry, Seychelles also has a well-developed maritime and shipping industry, President Kenyatta said that Kenya is willing to collaborate through training and capacity building programs for our mutual benefit. In the tourism sector, he said he was pleased to note that Kenya Airways has signed a joint marketing agreement with the Seychelles Tourism Board, which provides a collaborative framework to promote tourism within Africa.
In the international arena, he stressed that Kenya will intensify efforts to take advantage of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) to promote trade and investment between the two countries.
In concluding, President Kenyatta said that he is confident that his successor will continue to strengthen and elevate relations between Kenya and Seychelles.
The banquet was attended by the First Lady, Ms. Linda Ramkalawan, Vice President Ahmed Afif, senior officials from the Kenyan delegation, the Seychelles Cabinet of Ministers, private sector representatives and other distinguished guests.
The President of the Republic, Mr. Wavel Ramkalawan, accompanied by the First Lady, Mrs. Linda Ramkalawan, yesterday afternoon attended the National Day Parade on Rue Pierre de Possesion, Victoria, to commemorate the 46th Anniversary of the Independence of Seychelles.
This year's celebration was also attended by the Guest of Honor of the National Day, the Minister of State at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, His Excellency Sheikh Shakhboot Nahyan Al Nahyan on behalf of His Highness Sheikh Mohamed Bin Zayed Al Nahyan. , President of the United Arab Emirates and Commander of the UAE Armed Forces.
This year's celebration took place in the heart of Victoria, which was also attended by the Vice President, Mr. Ahmed Afif and Mrs. Stella Afif, the Speaker of the National Assembly, H.E. Roger Mancienne, President of the Supreme Court, Justice Rony Govinden, President of the Court of Appeal, Justice Anthony Fernando, Minister Designate, Mr. Jean-François Ferrari, members of the National Celebrations Committee, Ministers, Leader of Government Affairs in the National Assembly, Bro. Bernard Georges, members of the Diplomatic Corps, Commissioner of Police, Mr. Ted Barbe, Chief of the Defense Forces, Brigadier Michael Rosette, Mayor of Victoria, Mr. David Andre and other distinguished Guests.
The Head of State was received by the Vice President, Mr. Ahmed Afif, the Designated Minister, Mr. Jean-François Ferrari, the Police Commissioner, Mr. Ted Barbe, and the Chief of the Defense Forces, Brigadier Michael Rosette. This was followed by the Presidential Salute, where the National Music Band played the National Anthem and, for the first time, a 21-gun salute was fired simultaneously.
This year's parade was made up of 39 platoons of uniformed men and women, youth organizations, as well as members of the Security Forces and Bodies. The platoons included local and foreign Military Forces, the Seychelles Police Force, the Seychelles Fire and Rescue Services Agency and Youth Organizations under the Seychelles National Youth Council accompanied by the National Music Band, led by Master Nilsen Ernest and the Major of the Band, Brian Larue.
The public present watched the parade which began by marching from the 'Stad Popiler' along 'Rue Pierre de Possession'. Then, he headed towards the Clock Tower and continued along Avenida Independencia. Arriving at Avenida de la Constitución, it turned right and marched to the 'Stad Popiler' where it ended.
The ceremony also featured a reflection presented by the President of the Seychelles Interfaith Council, Father Danny Elizabeth, and a fusion of Seychelles national dances with a modern twist performed by youth from the Seychelles National Youth Council.
To coincide with the Seychelles National Day celebrations, President Wavel Ramkalawan and First Lady Linda Ramkalawan attended a ceremony at the International Conference Center of Seychelles (ICCS) last night to pay tribute to all health workers in the country.
In his speech, the President praised and thanked all healthcare workers for what they are doing for the community and the nation. With special mention to those who have worked on the front lines in the fight against Covid-19, he praised them for their courage, patience and dedication.
“This is the first time that an event of this type has been held in honor of our health workers. Today we celebrate and pay tribute to all health workers in Seychelles as we feel the importance of showing our gratitude for the work they do. Today is also a significant day as we look back at all the difficulties the country has faced due to the COVID-19 pandemic; Thanks to you, we now have our hospitals without infected cases. This shows your devotion and love for your work. On behalf of the people of Seychelles, I want to express my appreciation and thanks to all health workers in all departments of the Ministry of Health. You can all count on our continued support,” said President Ramkalawan.
In response to the tribute, the Minister of Health, Mrs. Peggy Vidot, thanked the President for his words of thanks and for speaking on behalf of the people of Seychelles.
“It is with humility that on behalf of all health workers in Seychelles we accept this tribute that underlines our vocation, courage, knowledge and our ability to serve our country. I know that we hold a special place in the heart of every Seychellois. I would like to call on all healthcare workers to work as a team and see ways to improve the well-being of our people,” he said.
The ceremony was full of tributes and thanks to all the health workers who have worked tirelessly, dedicating their lives to providing medical care to all. The staff paraded in their respective uniforms to show the different departments within the Ministry of Health. Together with students from the National Institute of Health and Social Studies (NIHSS), they performed dance, song, poem and instrumental solo. The event also featured local artists including Joe Samy, Jean-Marc Volcy and Mahé Chamber Choir, and Heartbeat Studio.
President Ramkalawan and other distinguished guests viewed a video showing the journey of health workers, from the day Seychelles announced its first positive cases of COVID-19 on Saturday, March 14, 2020 following tests carried out in two people in the quarantine facility at Perseverance. . In memory of health workers who have lost their lives due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the ceremony included the symbolic lighting of a candle by a family member. There were also prayers and blessings from the Rev. Christine Benoit.
Also present at this auspicious event was Vice President Mr. Ahmed Afif, the President of the National Assembly, Hon. Roger Mancienne, Ministers, Leader of Government Affairs in the National Assembly, Hon. Bernard Georges, Leader of the Opposition in the National Assembly, H.E. Sebastien Pillay, Members of the Diplomatic Corps, Attorney General, Mr. Frank Ally, Commissioner of Police, Mr. Ted Barbe, Vice President of the National Assembly, H.E. Gervais Henrie, members of the Seychelles National Assembly, health workers and other guests.
The President of the Republic, Mr. Wavel Ramkalawan, and the First Lady, Mrs. Linda Ramkalawan, were the guests of honor at the official opening ceremony of the Chinese Cultural Center of Seychelles, Benezet Street, Victoria last night.
The Chinese community here in Seychelles came together on this momentous occasion after the long wait for the opening of the Center. It took 8 years for the Center to be finished.
Addressing the ceremony, President Ramkalawan congratulated the Chinese community on this important milestone, which he stressed was fraught with difficulties.
“I wish to congratulate you on the completion of this Center. The old Pagoda building was definitely a landmark for all Seychellois and here too I want to thank the late Charlie Ng Ping Cheun, former president of the Seychelles Chinese Association, for his relentless determination and energy he put into this project. so we can have this new milestone. This also applies to the current president of the association and all members. On behalf of the government, I would like to thank the Chinese community for everything that has contributed to making this country what it is today. This Center is part of our culture, let us continue to grow our culture,” said President Ramkalawan.
For his part, the president of the Chinese Association, Mr. Robert Chong Seng, went back to the foundation stone of the new pagoda, laid in February 2014 during the celebrations of the first Seychelles-China day. He discussed the challenges they had to face to see it through to completion, which included a severe lack of funding, applying for financial assistance, and tirelessly fundraising, among others. Mr. Chong Seng took the opportunity to thank the Ambassador of China, Ms. Wei Guo, for her dedicated assistance during the construction of the Center.
The Chinese ambassador described the opening of the Center as a historic moment for Seychelles, symbolizing a new beginning for the Chinese community.
The ceremony was highlighted by the cutting of the ribbon by the president, Ambassador Guo, Chinese elders, the president of the Chinese Association and other Chinese representatives. There was also the unveiling of the opening plaque by two Chinese elders.
During the ceremony, there was also a Tai Chi demonstration. The Center attended Tai Chi classes every Friday from 4:30 p.m. to which the public can join.
After the ceremony, President Ramkalawan and First Lady Ramkalawan along with other distinguished guests toured the Center where they were able to see exhibits on the first and second floors. The exhibition highlights certain milestones in the more than 100 years of existence of the Chinese Association and its forerunner, the KHUM FOCK FOOY QUOON (Cantonese and Fujian society). It focuses on the old Pagoda and its replacement; Seychelles Chinese Cultural Center.
The Center also caters to Pagoda Art and Design, which aims to provide a platform where works of art and design are more accessible to visitors and residents; and where creatives can be rewarded with financial gains from the sales of their work.
Also present at the ceremony were the Vice President of the Republic of Seychelles, Mr. Ahmed Afif, and Ms. Stella Afif, the Chinese community in Seychelles and other guests.
The President of Seychelles, Mr. Wavel Ramkalawan, will join other world leaders at the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM) to be held from June 20-25, 2022 in Kigali, Rwanda.
The official opening ceremony of CHOGM will take place on Friday, June 24, and will be followed by the main high-level meetings of Heads of Government from Friday, June 24 to Saturday, June 25. As part of CHOGM activities, the President will also participate in the Heads of Government Retreat, as well as several side events.
CHOGM was due to take place in June 2020, but was postponed twice due to the COVID-19 pandemic. More than 30 Heads of Government, including high-level officials and diplomats, will participate in the upcoming CHOGM.
The President will leave the country on Wednesday, June 22, and will be back in the country on Sunday, June 26. During President Ramkalawan's absence from the country, his duties and responsibilities will be performed by Vice President Ahmed Afif.
The President of the Republic, Mr. Wavel Ramkalawan, accompanied by the First Lady, Mrs. Linda Ramkalawan, together with several high-level officials gathered yesterday morning at the 'Lavwa Lanasyon' monument to celebrate the 29th anniversary of the Seychelles Constitution Day.
Guests in attendance witnessed the ceremonial raising of the Seychelles national flag by uniformed Seychellois men and women, accompanied by the Seychelles national anthem performed by the National Brass Band.
The ceremony also featured various performances by young Seychellois artists who shared messages.
Delivering his speech for the occasion, President Ramkalawan underlined the importance of the Constitution and the essence of democracy derived from it, which continues to protect the rights of the country as a sovereign and democratic nation and its peoples.
“On this auspicious day, we celebrate our constitution. We have once again reaffirmed our belief in democracy that our constitution will continue to guide us as it also protects the rights of each and every citizen. This is what we have stated and this is the message we want the world to know. Seychelles is a democratic state, and that Seychelles will respect every citizen and every foreigner on our land, and at the same time through democratic processes and the way we make laws and the way the judiciary acts, and on everything how the executive performs its functions will always respect the rights of each and every one of the citizens”, said the President.
Also present were the Vice President of the Republic of Seychelles, Mr. Ahmed Afif, and Ms. Stella Afif, the Speaker of the National Assembly, H.E. Roger Mancienne, President of the Supreme Court, Justice Rony Govinden, Acting President of the Court of Appeal, Justice Fiona Robinson, Minister Designate and President of the National Celebrations Committee, Mr. Jean-Francois Ferrari, Ministers, Leader of Government Affairs in the National Assembly The Honorable Bernard Georges, Members of the Diplomatic Corps, Attorney General, Mr. Frank Ally, Commissioner of Police, Mr. Ted Barbe, Chief of the Defense Forces, Brigadier Michael Rosette, Director General of the Seychelles Intelligence Service, Mr. Benediste Hoareau, members of the National Celebrations Committee and other distinguished guests.
The day was also commemorated with flag-raising ceremonies on the other two largest islands in the archipelago, Praslin and La Digue, for the first time accompanied by the Seychellois Band and military parade, as well as various performances by Seychellois youth.
President Wavel Ramkalawan approved the Constitution of the Republic of Seychelles (10th Amendment) Act, 2022 during a ceremony held at the State House yesterday afternoon. The National Assembly approved the bill on May 31, 2022 and yesterday the president signed the bill into law.
The 2008 Constitutional Revision Commission recommended reforming article 163 of the Constitution to crystallize the functions and powers of the Defense Forces. In this sense, the Government intends to make it clear in the Constitution that the Armed Forces can exercise powers to enforce any written law on public safety, environmental protection, maritime safety or maritime zones.
The bill also seeks to change the words “Seychelles Defense Forces”, wherever they appear in the Constitution, to the words “Seychelles Defense Forces”.
The President assented to the bill in the presence of the Attorney General, Mr. Frank Ally.
During his statement before approving the Constitution of the Republic of Seychelles (10th Amendment) Bill, 2022, the President thanked everyone who has participated in the amendments of this new bill. Namely, the Seychelles Defense Force, the Seychelles Police, the Judiciary (both the Supreme Court and the Court of Appeal), the Honorable Leader of the Opposition, the Human Rights Commission, the Ombudsman, the media communication, the Defense and Security Committee of the National Assembly, the Seychelles Bar Association and other individuals and organizations.
“The military will not replace the police. The armed forces will simply provide support to the police force and other public authorities in dealing with a wide range of issues, such as drug trafficking, human trafficking, quarantine, search and rescue, spill response measures oil, kidnapping and hostage negotiations. There is no need for the public to be afraid of these amendments. Unlike the 1979 Constitution, the current 1993 Constitution protects the rights and privileges of all Seychellois through the Seychelles Charter of Fundamental Human Rights and Freedoms,” the President said.
Also present at the State House for the ceremony were the Vice President, Mr. Ahmed Afif, the Chief of the Defense Forces, Brigadier Michael Rosette, Police Commissioner Ted Barbe, the President of the National Assembly, the Hon. Roger Mancienne, President of the Supreme Court, Justice Rony Govinden, Leader of Government Affairs in the National Assembly, the Hon. Bernard Georges, the Ombudsman, Mrs. Nichole Tirant-Ghérardi, Visible Chief of Police, Superintendent Antoine Desnousse and the Principal Deputy State Attorney in the Chamber of the Attorney General. Mr. Stefan R. Knights (LLB LEC MSc LLM).
The President of the Republic, Mr. Wavel Ramkalawan, received India's outgoing High Commissioner to Seychelles, His Excellency General Dalbir Singh Suhag (Retd), for a farewell call at the State House this morning.
President Ramkalawan thanked High Commissioner Suhag for his contribution to the development of Seychelles-India relations. The president commended him for his dedication and efforts to initiate cooperation in various sectors, in particular community projects, military, health, education and capacity building, sports and youth, as well as maritime security.
“It has been a pleasure working with you and your tenure as Indian High Commissioner to Seychelles has further raised the level of cooperation between our two countries and cemented long-standing relations. Today, on behalf of the Government of Seychelles, I want to reaffirm our commitment to strengthening the friendship between Seychelles and India, which is based on historical and cultural ties, mutual trust and shared aspirations. I would also like to take this opportunity to express our gratitude to the people and government of India for the gift of COVISHIELD vaccine supplies during our vaccination programme, which has greatly helped save lives,” said the President.
Head of State and High Commissioner Suhag reviewed the various projects and cooperation that India and Seychelles have managed to establish, as well as those that are still ongoing.
During his visit to Government House, High Commissioner Suhag also paid a farewell visit to the Vice President, Mr. Ahmed Afif.
After the meeting, High Commissioner Suhag said: “It has been a great experience for me to be here in Seychelles. When I started my mission, we decided to spearhead some of the development under the High Impact Community Development Projects, although, in light of the COVID-19 pandemic, we were only able to do 22 projects.”
Also present at the farewell call at Government House was the Minister of Foreign Affairs and Tourism, Mr. Sylvestre Radegonde. The High Commission of India was accredited to the Republic of Seychelles in June 2019.