Social Renaissance: The Plan of Action (part 2)


Legislative and judicial framework
An important component for the successful realisation of the Social Renaissance Plan of Action is to ensure that our laws and policies relating to the criminal justice system are relevant to the social ills facing Seychelles presently.  Many of the challenges are complex and usually end up before the courts and in an overcrowded prison system. While stiffer penalties may act as a deterrent, there is a need for a comprehensive approach to ensure the rehabilitation and re-integration of prisoners back into society. This relates specifically to the large number of young men currently in prison for drug-related offences.

The Attorney General’s Office is committed to spearheading the establishment of a Law Reform Commission to make proposals for more relevant legislation to address the current social situation. This relates to drugs, alcohol abuse and prostitution. The Judiciary is also taking steps to clear the current backlog of cases and ensure a more effective delivery of justice.

The development of a Code of Conduct as well as capacity building for its officials is among measures to improve service delivery.

Government is determined to reduce current drug related crimes and anti-social behaviour in Seychelles. An effective justice system is necessary to remove dangerous criminals from the streets. Our laws must serve both as a deterrent and punishment. All convicts must receive the necessary rehabilitation and treatment to ensure that they are given the maximum opportunity to contribute to society once they have served their sentences. Measures are being taken within the criminal justice system to address the present challenges by adopting more innovative strategies to allow our institutions to operate more effectively.

Capacity building
The transformation of Seychellois society demands specialised interventions and services. It also demands qualified personnel to offer the required programmes and work with identified target groups. There needs to be major investment in the training and recruitment of service providers in the field of education, health, social, probationary and prison services, as well as in the treatment and rehabilitation of substance abusers to ensure a comprehensive approach and response. Seychelles is at a crucial juncture and needs to bring its services up to date to better manage the challenges of development in a more practical and effective manner.

Monitoring and evaluation framework
The framework for the implementation of the Plan of Action consists of three levels of monitoring. At the national level, the National Social Renaissance Committee (to be reconstituted along with a more relevant mandate reflecting its monitoring and evaluation role) which is the co-ordinating body for the Social Renaissance Programme will report bi-annually to the President and Cabinet of Ministers through its chairman, the Designated Minister. 

Six sectoral committees responsible for monitoring the major areas of the Plan will in turn report to the National Social Renaissance Committee. The Committees are:
• National Drugs-Related Crime Reduction Committee
• The Education Committee
• The Health Committee
• The Social and Community Development Committee
• The Labour and Human Resource Committee
• The Civil Society and SIFCO Committee
The Plan is calling for increased collaboration, co-ordination and commitment. It is the mechanism through which sectoral activities can be monitored and evaluated at a national level.

Role of the media
Much of the success in the implementation of the plan will depend on the manner of communicating with the public. There is a necessity to keep people informed on what is happening as well as keep them engaged in the process. Additionally, the media has a role to sensitise and educate the population through regular programmes. The co-operation of the national media is therefore an important component in the successful implementation of the plan.

The 6 areas

• Drugs and criminality
• Education
• Employment and human resource development
• Health
• Family and community relationships
• Personal responsibility

These are the core areas of the National Plan. Next week, detailed information will be provided on the specific activities and projects that are being proposed over the next five years leading to the New Seychelles.

For further information or comments, you can contact 4281623 or visit: