David Pierre new leader of the opposition in the Assembly


16-December-2011

Mr Pierre taking his Oath of Allegiance before Speaker Herminie

Mr Pierre nominated and voted himself leader of the opposition after being sworn in yesterday as his party’s proportionally elected member in the National Assembly.

The PDM won its appeal for the allocation of a proportionally elected seat in the National Assembly in a ruling by the Court of Appeal last week.

Mr Pierre took his Oath of Allegiance in the presence of Speaker Patrick Herminie, members of the majority Parti Lepep in the Assembly and representatives of the PDM who were also present.

Explaining the procedure, Speaker Herminie said Article 84 of the Constitution provides for members of the opposition in the Assembly to choose a leader among them but the fact that in this case there is only one member, the Assembly has received legal advice that this is the closest to the procedure which has been used so far.

Speaking soon after taking his oath, Mr Pierre said PDM as the only opposition party being represented in the Assembly will have a different approach in its method and style of doing politics in the opposition.

He said the people will be there to judge and guide them with their contributions to ensure the opposition brings what is best for Seychelles.

He insists that his party will continue to develop a multi-party system of democracy because the PDM does not believe in one-party politics.

He said his party will among many things strive to ensure that the right to respect will be for all Seychellois but not only for the leaders; that Seychelles deserves a government which respects all its people regardless of religion, race and political affiliation; that the PDM plays an active role to ensure that not only the political process is democratised but that the economic development of the whole country continues to be transformed and that all Seychellois gets equal chance to take part in the process.

Mr Pierre said the PDM is taking this opportunity to call for dialogue with President James Michel.
“PDM is ready to meet Mr Michel to start the process for serious, frank and honest consultations and dialogue in a continuous manner on all issues relating directly to the welfare, prosperity and happiness of our people,” said Mr Pierre.

Both Speaker Herminie and the leader of government business in the Assembly, Marie-Louise Potter, congratulated Mr Pierre on his new responsibility as the PDM representative and the leader of the opposition in the Assembly.

Mr Herminie also announced that Mr Pierre, as the leader of the opposition in the Assembly, will be the new chairperson of the Assembly’s Finance Committee, the body responsible to oversee government expenses.

Mrs Potter welcomed Mr Pierre in the Assembly and said the majority party is encouraged by his party’s new approach to doing politics.

“The election is now behind us and we still have a lot of challenges facing us,” she said.
She said the two parties will have different views and will disagree on various issues but this should not be allowed to divide them.

She stressed that the welfare of the people should remain the main priority of both parties.

Asked why Mr Pierre had to be sworn in at a time when the Assembly is going into recess, Mr Herminie said the Constitution obliged that the Assembly starts a new term with the State of the Nation Address. Had Mr Pierre not sworn in today, he would not be able to be present in the Assembly for the President’s address. 

Meanwhile the National Assembly has gone into recess after a week-long sessions during which a series of Bills were debated and approved.

The Assembly is to resume early next year with President James Michel’s State-of-the-nation Address.

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