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Year 2019 news highlights | 31 December 2019

As we come to the end of 2019, Seychelles NATION presents its readers with a month-by-month summary of some of the local news that have marked this eventful year.

 

January

01.01: Two healthy baby girls are born at the Seychelles Hospital, Mont Fleuri.

The first baby is born around 7am weighing 2.875kg to mother Dayanne Leon.

The second baby girl follows a few hours later -- at 12.20pm -- when Tania Alphonse delivers a healthy baby girl weighing 3.38kg.

 

04.01: Enterprise Seychelles Agency (ESA), the successor to the Small Enterprise Promotion Agency (Senpa), is officially launched in a brief ceremony at Sunset Beach Hotel, Glacis.

ESA’s mandate extends beyond the mandate of Senpa, allowing the agency to do more for local entrepreneurs and MSME owners as reflected by the 8 colours depicted on the agency’s logo to encapsulate all types of businesses in differing industries such as tourism, tailoring marketing among others.

 

08.01 : Antoinette Barrack i selebre son lanniverser 100-an pandan en rankont kot restoran Pomme Cannelle.

Madanm Barrack i dezyenm santener dan distrik Cascade apre Madanm Noemie Benoit ki’n fek selebre 102-an le 2 Zanvye.

 

15.01: The Central Bank of Seychelles suspends the payment service provider licence of Doubleclick Exchange (Pty) Ltd with immediate effect.

The Bureau de Change is issued with a directive to cease operations relating to the provision of money remittance services after it was found that it was not complying with applicable laws governing its operations.

 

22.01: The Mauritius Commercial Bank (MCB) Seychelles launches its new mobile banking app, Juice, allowing its customers to instantly transfer money, withdraw money from an ATM without a credit or debit card, settle purchases through a QR code and refill their phones, among other options.

 

25.01: A new fish market officially opens on la Digue. The construction of the fish market is one of the activities funded in the framework of the current Fisheries Protocol, signed between the government of Seychelles and the EU for the period 2014-2019.

Under the Protocol, the EU provides a total financial contribution of €30 million (R480 million) including access fees for EU fishing vessels operating in the Seychelles waters and support to the Seychelles sectoral support fisheries policy.

The La Digue fish market has been developed as part of the sectoral support which aims at developing Seychelles fisheries on the basis of priorities identified by the Seychelles Fishing Authority (SFA).

 

25.01: The 2019 Chinese Spring Festival, which coincides with the sixth Seychelles-China Day, is officially launched with a lavish ceremony and fashion show at Eden Bleu Hotel.

 

26.01: Seychelles’ most elderly citizen, Nancy Marie, celebrates her 110th birthday among family and friends in a special ceremony at the English River community centre.

Mrs Marie says she is very happy to have reached such a milestone age and to be able to see the younger generations in her family.

 

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The third breast reduction camp is held at the Seychelles Hospital and is conducted by Dr Abhishek Ghosh, a renowned and experienced cosmetic and micro vascular surgeon from India, invited by the local Jeo Jyoti Foundation, the sponsors of the camp.

 

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L’Alliance française des Seychelles célèbre les 40 ans de fidèles et loyaux services de sa médiathécaire Ruby de Silva.

Ruby a commencé à travailler pour l’Alliance française le 12 décembre 1978, 40 ans plus tard elle est fidèle au poste de médiathécaire, plus pétillante et souriante que jamais !

 

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Colonel André Ciseau is confirmed as the new secretary general of the Port Management Association of Eastern & Southern Africa (PMAESA).

Colonel Ciseau was chief executive of the Seychelles Ports Authority, and had been seconded to the PMAESA since June 2018, to be the acting secretary general.

 

 

February

02.02: Fulgencia Morel, a resident of Morne Blanc in the district of Port Glaud, celebrates her 100th birthday.

 

04.02: SIDS DOCK, the Small Island Developing States (Sids) Sustainable Energy and Climate Resilience organisation, announces the appointment of Seychelles ambassador and permanent representative of the Republic of Seychelles to the United Nations (UN), Ronny Jumeau, as chair of the executive council of SIDS DOCK.

Ambassador Jumeau was elected on September 29, 2018, during the fourth session of the Assembly of SIDS DOCK, held at the UN headquarters, on the margins of the General Debate of the 73rd UN General Assembly (UNGA).

 

07.02: In commemoration of the World Interfaith Harmony Week, an annual United Nations (UN) observance week initiated since 2007, the Seychelles Interfaith Council (Sifco) visits the Sheikh Mohamed Bin Khalifa Al-Nahayan Mosque in Victoria to hear more about the teachings of Islam and as a gesture of respect and tolerance for other beliefs and practices.

 

09.02: Al Salam Bank-Seychelles Limited (ASBS), located at Maison Esplanade, is officially inaugurated as a commercial bank by President Danny Faure.

ASBS is an Islamic Bank headquartered in Seychelles and licensed and regulated by the Central Bank of Seychelles. ASBS is a subsidiary of Al Salam Bank-Bahrain (ASBB), one of the pioneering Shari’a-compliant Banks based and regulated in the Kingdom of Bahrain. ASBS is jointly owned by ASBB and Seychelles Pension Fund, with an ownership share of 70% and 30% respectively.

 

12.02: The Financial Services Authority and the University of Seychelles sign a memorandum of understanding which establishes a framework for mutual collaboration in matters relating to financial education programmes. The aim is to develop financial capacity in Seychelles by providing relevant academic training for the financial services industry.

 

14.02: The National Council for Children officially launches its perseverance campaign to encourage children to persevere and pursue their dreams.

The campaign, which is endorsed by the Ministry of Family Affairs, is part of an ongoing effort to improve the lives of children in Seychelles through parents, peer educators, schools and policy makers by spreading positive messages on different themes.

 

15.02: Families and friends gather at the Good Shepherd’s church, Mont Fleuri, to pay their last respects at the funeral service of Rufned Jumeau, considered as one among Seychelles’ first politicians.

He died from old age and medical complications on Thursday, February 7, 2019 at his residence at La Gogue.

 

20.02: The first early childhood training room in the country, located at the Seychelles Institute of Teacher Education (Site), Mont Fleuri, officially opens with a brief ceremony and the unveiling of the room and its facilities.

The specialised room is equipped with facilities and resources to enable training at early-childhood level for both students of the institution and other early-childhood service providers inclusive of day-care centres, childminders, in-service and pre-service teachers as well as teaching assistants.

 

26.02: President Danny Faure delivers his annual State-of-the-Nation address during the first sitting of the National Assembly for 2019.

As promised, President Faure announces numerous measures aimed at tackling social ills and other national challenges such as housing, cost of living and health as well as measures to ensure economic growth.

 

26.02: A communiqué from the United Seychelles Party announces that Basil Hoareau is stepping down as a proportionally elected member of the party in the National Assembly.

Mr Hoareau has expressed his desire to focus more fully on his legal profession and chamber after dedicating the last two years of his time in the National Assembly.

 

26.02: Air Seychelles together with the support of Denis Private Island flies endemic Seychelles Paradise Flycatchers from Denis to Praslin to assist with conservation efforts to save the threatened birds.

 

27.02: Seychelles former and second President, France Albert René passes away at the Seychelles Hospital following a long illness.

In a televised message, President Danny Faure says it is with a heavy heart that he announces the passing of President René and praises him as "a patriot and humble servant."

 

27.01: After over three decades of operating a video rental in Seychelles, the owners of the renowned and beloved G R Video at Mare Anglaise closes its doors for the last time.

It was one of the first video shops to open and over the years became the biggest one in Seychelles.  

 

30.01: The Ministry of Fisheries and Agriculture in collaboration with the National Biosecurity Agency (NBA) and the Seychelles Agricultural Agency (SAA) launches a national campaign against melon flies with the aim of drastically reducing the fruit fly population in Seychelles by the fourth quarter of 2019.

 

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Seven Seychellois researchers receive grants to venture on an underwater expedition to explore the depths (up to 500 m) of the waters of Seychelles.

They are Jennifer Appoo, Clara Belmont, Stephanie Marie, Andrew Souffre, Sheena Talma, Jeanne Mortimer and Damien Labiche.

The Seychelles Nekton expedition is a partnership between Seychelles and Nekton to undertake pioneering research in Seychelles’ deep waters and develop national capacity to support Seychelles’ marine spatial plan and the development of a sustainable blue economy.

 

 

March

02.03: The ground breaking Nekton Mission 2, known as the First Descent, is officially launched in a ceremony held onboard the Ocean Zephyr, a scientific research vessel.

The First Descent – a collaboration between the ocean research institute Nekton, the Commonwealth and other partners – is a series of expeditions aimed at exploring and conserving the world’s least explored ocean, the Indian Ocean.

 

06.03: A group of nine Seychellois students clinch the top prize in a cultural competition held at the University of Nottingham Malaysia Campus.

The Seychellois team impressed the audience and the judges with two dance performances, the first dance coming from a group of students from Asia Pacific University (APU) and the second dance performed by a group of students from Nottingham University itself.

 

07.03: The country says a formal goodbye to former President France Albert René in a national funeral service.

Former President France Albert René is honoured with a state funeral before being laid to rest on the grounds of the Mont Fleuri cemetery.

He passed away in the early morning of February 27 at the Seychelles Hospital at the age of 83 years old.

 

08.03: Young scientist Stephanie Marie is the first known Seychellois to explore the ocean in Seychelles below scuba depth and she has been congratulated by President Danny Faure on this historic feat.

Ms Marie is one of eight Seychellois scientists and conservationists who have joined leading scientists and technicians on the ground breaking Nekton Mission 2, known as the First Descent.

 

12.03: Theresa Tomking, one of Seychelles’ centenarians, passes away at the age of 100.

Mrs Tomking celebrated her 100th birthday in November last year.

 

12.03: Ninety-one-year-old twin sisters Florine Kandasamy and Floria Alexis meet and interact with President Danny Faure at State House.

The encounter follows an interview broadcasted by the Seychelles Broadcasting Corporation (SBC) on February 24 in which the sisters expressed their wish to meet President Faure.

 

15.03: The price of Liquefied Petroleum Gas goes down to R15 per kilo reflecting a 12% decrease from the previous selling price of R17 per kilo.

The reduction in the price of gas follows the announcement made on February 26, 2019 by President Danny Faure in his State-of-the-Nation address in line with the government’s vision to reduce the cost of living in the country.

 

19.03: Johan Rifned Loze i ranplas Basil Hoareau konman manm proporsyonnel parti United Seychelles dan Lasanble Nasyonal.

Onorab Hoareau ti en manm proporsyonnel United Seychelles (ki avan ti apel Parti Lepep) depi Septanm 2016.

 

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Forty individuals from different organisations on Mahé volunteer to participate in an outer islands clean-up exercise on Alphonse, Astove, Coetivy, Desroches, Farquhar, Platte, Poivre, and Remire.

This will be the first ever large-scale clean-up of outer islands in Seychelles.

The March 18-31 cleaning expedition has been conceived by the Islands Development Company (IDC) to remove and dispose of marine litter that have accumulated along the coastlines of the outer islands.

 

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The Seychelles Association of the Blind and Visually Impaired (SABVI) is officially launched.

The new association is chaired by Dickson Servina and the other executive members are Brigitte Lablache (vice-chair), Dominic Denis (treasurer) and Rosabelle Hoareau (secretary).

The main aim of the association is to educate the general public, organisations, professions, visually impaired people and their families about the nature of visual impairment and the capabilities of visually impaired people.

 

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Seychelles has been awarded ‘for issuing the first public sector green bond’, i.e. the Blue Bond, from the Climate Bonds Initiative.

The award is collected by High Commissioner Derick Ally on behalf of Vice-President Vincent Meriton.

 

 

April

03.04: Born and bred Seychellois war hero John Sauvage, who fought in World War Two, dies at the age of 100, after a short illness.

He is the last surviving member of his crew in the RAF’s 97 Squadron.

 

15.04: The second beach and safety guide is launched. It gives details on safety, tips on various leisure activities that tourists enjoy during their stay in the country, these include tips on which beaches are the safest, various sites for water activities and precautions to take among others.

The booklet also has a flora and fauna section which provides useful tips on which marine species are dangerous and what to do if you are stung or bitten by one as well as information in case of shark sightings and what to do in those instances.

 

16.04: The James R. Mancham Peace and Diplomacy Research at the University of Seychelles (UniSey) in collaboration with the United Nations (UN) country team and the department of foreign affairs holds an event to commemorate the 25th anniversary of the 1994 Rwandan genocide.

 

23.04: Danny Sylva Lucas is sworn in as the new chairman of the Electoral Commission.

Speaking to the press soon after taking his oaths, Mr Lucas says among the reasons he decided to take the challenge as the EC chairman is to share his experience and knowledge to move the commission forward.

 

25.04: The Trade department of the Ministry of Finance, Trade, Investment and Economic Planning, in collaboration with the World Intellectual Property Organisation (WIPO) organises a national workshop in a bid to raise awareness and sensitise relevant stakeholders on copyright related treaties and the obligations of such treaties on member states.

 

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Former President James Michel is admitted as a full member of the World Leadership Alliance – Club de Madrid, the world’s largest forum of democratically elected former presidents and prime ministers committed to sharing their experience in government and to overcoming the challenges of leading and decision-making in contemporary politics worldwide.

 

 

May

07.05: Over 70 high employment officials, workers union representatives and other related stakeholders from different regional African island states including Seychelles are meeting here to discuss and explore sustainable work opportunities for the future in the blue economy sector.

The meeting is being hosted under the theme ‘Creating a sustainable future of work and just transition towards the blue economy’ and its main objective is to share experiences, identify challenges and opportunities in the blue economy sector, find and agree on ways to tackle future of work challenges and forms part of activities to mark the ILO’s centenary and 60 years of the organisation’s presence in Africa.

 

08.05 : C‘est la troisième fois que les Seychelles assument la présidence au sein de la Commission de la Jeunesse et de Sports de l’Océan Indien (CJSOI).

C’est la Ministre Désignée et la ministre chargée de la Jeunesse et des Sports, Madame Macsuzy Mondon qui sera responsable de ce dossier. Les deux précédents ministres qui avaient eu cette responsabilité étaient le Vice-Président Vincent Meriton et Mme Sylvette Pool.

 

11.05: 32-year-old Samina Fred, a freelance finance consultant and 37-year-old Gina Jules, a waitress at Eden Blue hotel, Eden Island, are rewarded for their contributions to the Red Cross Society of Seychelles’ (RCSS) and the community.

Described as ‘jack of all trade’, Ms Fred was very instrumental for changes and transformation at structural level at the RCSS headquarters, Providence which she also participated in. She also helped with preparing the finance audit report among other RCSS voluntary duties.

As for Ms Jules, she saved an eight-year-old Seychellois girl who was drowning in the Eden Blue hotel’s swimming pool on January 19, 2019.

 

16.05: A new branch of Dr Murthy’s clinic opens at Anse Aux Pins.

The new Family Medical and Dental Clinic, located at Challam’s building, will cater for the public from the southern and eastern regions.

This clinic is the third branch of Dr Murthy’s medical services. The first one was opened in Victoria in 2009 and the second on Praslin.

 

29.05: To commemorate its 40th anniversary, the Seychelles Islands Foundation (SIF) holds a free public symposium to showcase its latest research and conservation projects.

The presentations cover a wide variety of fascinating topics such as the secrets of the Coco de Mer, the world’s first eradication of the ring-necked parakeets on Mahé and the Aldabra clean-up project.

 

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Cabinet approves the privatisation of the Union Vale veterinary clinic. The clinic is being leased out to a group of private vets – Pawlinks Veterinary Care – who will offer private veterinary care services for domestic animals.

 

 

June

02.06 : C’ést avec une salle comble de supporteurs que le cinquante-cinquième anniversaire de SPUP/SPPF/Parti Lepep/United Seychelles a est célébré à ICCS.

Le Président Danny Faure participe aussi à cette célébration, non en tant que Président de la République, mais en tant que membre du parti United Seychelles (US). Pendant cette célébration, les intervenants parlent sur le référendum et la candidature de Danny Faure comme Président pour les prochaines élections.

 

07.06: Dan zefor pour devlop zouti pour promouvwar lalang kreol e anmenmtan fer promosyon lalang Kreol atraver lalektir, Lenstiti Kreol Sesel in lans nouvo liv kreol pour zanfan.

Sa lansman, dedye pour bann zanfan alokazyon Lazournen Enternasyonnal pour bann Zanfan, i form parti zefor kontinyel pour anmenn lapresyasyon pour lalang maternel atraver la lektir, pli pros avek bann zanfan e kominote an zeneral.

 

12.06: One Seychelles, a party launched in April 2018, officially files its registration document with the Office of the Electoral Commission.

The president of One Seychelles is former minister for tourism, civil aviation, ports and marine, Alain St Ange.

 

13.06: Anse Royale receives a donation of 40 LED lights which is expected to improve street lighting along the main roads of the district.

The donation comes from local businessman Gilbert Frichot, the owner of Mahé Design & Build, and Kafé Kreol, a popular beachfront restaurant in Anse Royale, run by Mr Frichot’s wife Carola Frichot.

Mr Frichot explains that the donation is an initiative of the corporate social responsibility (CSR) committee at Mahé Design & Build who decides on projects to fund and implement.

 

17.06: Judges, lawyers, legislators, the chief justice, the ombudsman, the attorney general, members of various commissions in the country and the general public take part in a public symposium organised by the judiciary to celebrate Constitution Day (June 18).

The symposium is entitled ‘Constitutionally Speaking: Judicial impartiality, without fear or favour’.

 

20.06: Secretary of state for Finance, Trade and Investment, Patrick Payet, is the recipient of the 2019 Best Sustainable Finance Solution Award at this year’s Treasury Today’s Adam Smith Awards.

SS Payet accepts the award along with other overall and highly commended category winners during the celebratory Adam Smith Awards gala presentation at the prestigious Plaisterers’ Hall in London.

SS Payet receives the award in recognition of his efforts leading to the issuance of the world’s first sovereign ‘blue bonds’ last year, and establishing a framework for their issuance.

 

24.06: Seychelles joins 53 other African countries to participate in the first-ever China-Africa and Trade Expo in the city of Changsha, Hunan Province, People’s Republic of China.

Launched under the China-Africa Cooperation Forum, the June 24-27 exhibition aims to establish a new mechanism for economic and trade cooperation between China and African countries.

 

28.06: The Prime Minister of Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, H.E. Dr. Ralph E. Gonsalves, arrives in the country for a three-day State visit.

PM Gonsalves will later today be received by President Danny Faure at State House for talks which are expected to focus primarily on issues affecting small island states as well as the blue economy.

 

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The United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) approves to establish the Empretec programme in Seychelles.

Empretec is a flagship capacity-building programme of the UNCTAD for the promotion of entrepreneurship in micro, small and medium-sized enterprises (MSMEs) to facilitate sustainable development and inclusive growth.

 

 

July

01.07 : Le Colonel Clifford Roseline et Colonel Michael Rosette sont décorés par le gouvernement français avec la médaille de la Défense nationale – échelon argent et échelon bronze, respectivement.

 

02.07: The Indian Ocean Tuna (IOT) signs a memorandum of understanding with the Seychelles Institute of Technology (SIT) with the aim of boosting the factory’s local workforce as well as recruiting and retaining good Seychellois workers.

 

02.07: Seychelles welcomes its neighbouring State’s national airline, Air Mauritius (MK), for the start of a twice-weekly flight between the two friendly countries.

 

09.07: President Danny Faure is awarded the Ocean Heritage Award by the Shark Research Institute.

The award is handed over to the President by Dr David Rowat, chairman of the Marine Conservation Society Seychelles (MCSS), the official representative of the Shark Research Institute in Seychelles. Shark Research Institute is based in New Jersey, USA and is an international organisation.

 

18.07: Seychelles joins countries around the world to celebrate Nelson Mandela International Day, with the unveiling of a statue honouring the memory of the late Nelson Mandela at the Peace Park located in Victoria.

 

27.07: Fourteen families whose permanent houses are either in the process of being repaired or rebuilt after being destroyed by fire or other disasters, receive the keys to a temporary dwelling place in the newly opened Barbarons Transit Homes.

The Barbarons Transit Homes comprises 42 houses – 16 of which are of three bedrooms, 18 two bedrooms and eight one bedroom.

 

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The Housing Finance Company (HFC) introduces two new schemes which will help land owners to sub-divide their properties for transfer and for families to repair their houses.

A third scheme will allow for an extension on housing loan repayments.

The three schemes are the Survey Loan Scheme (which is to encourage land owners who through lack of resources want to transfer land to other family members to construct their own houses through sub-divisions), the Major Loan Renovation Scheme (for clients who are not eligible for bank loans) and the Extended Loan Repayment Scheme (from 23 years to 30 years).

 

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Seychelles climbs up a staggering 16 steps on the World Press Freedom Index to be positioned 69th in the ranking, behind Madagascar, Comoros and Mauritius.

The index ranks 180 countries and regions according to the level of freedom available to journalists and is a snapshot of the media freedom situation based on an evaluation of pluralism, independence of the media, quality of legislative framework and safety of journalists in each country and region.

 

 

August

02.08: Air Seychelles becomes the first Airbus A320neo operator in the Indian Ocean and Africa following the A320neo successful delivery.

The aircraft is also the first unit equipped with CFM’s new generation LEAP-1A engines to be operated on the continent, making it more fuel and cost efficient.

The airline’s new A320neo has been named Veuve after the endemic Seychelles Paradise Flycatcher.

 

02.08: Ibrahim Mohamed Solih, the seventh President of the Republic of Maldives and First Lady Fazna Ahmed, arrive in the country for a two-day State visit.

President Solih and delegation are greeted by a motorcade welcome to the VIP lounge as opposed to a customary red carpet welcome on account of heavy rains and wind.

 

03.08: The Ministry of Education and Human Resource Development (MEHRD) and the Ministry of General Education of Zambia sign a memorandum of understanding (MoU) for the recruitment of an extra 32 Zambian teachers, lecturers and other specialists in the education sector.

Most of the Zambian teachers, 23 of them, will be working in our primary schools while the others will be teaching in the secondary schools.

 

09.08: Inmates and a number of staff assigned to the prison facility on Coetivy Island are brought back to Montagne Posée Prison, as the Seychelles Prison Service (SPS) conducts a review of its operations on the island.

The review will as well provide the SPS an opportunity to assess any information that it has received concerning possible compromise or breaches to its operations on the island.

 

09.08: The first day lounge facility for nursing mothers on maternity ward 2 officially opens at the Seychelles Hospital.

The aim of setting up this facility is to ensure the comfort of nursing mothers after delivery whose babies are in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU).

 

09.08: Leader of the Lalyans Demokratik Seselwa Roger Mancienne confirms that Philippe Boulle has left the executive council of the opposition coalition.

“Mr Boulle has informed the LDS executive council that he wishes to diminish political commitments in order to pursue his legal career and related endeavours. Specifically for LDS this means he is resigning as a member of the executive council,” says Mr Mancienne in a communiqué.

 

10.08: The 20th Seychelles Youth Festival, under the theme ’Reaching out to the Youths’, is officially launched in a ceremony at the Palais des Sports.

 

15.08: Diguoise Melissa Radegonde is crowned Miss 15 Août 2019 during the pageant show held at La Passe, La Digue as part of the activities celebrating the Feast of the Assumption.

Melissa also clinches prizes for Miss Personality and Best Evening Wear.

It is the first time that such a pageant is organised on the island.

 

16.08: One Seychelles is officially registered as a political party making it the 12th registered political party in Seychelles.

 

16.08 : Une foule nombreuse de fidèles, venue de toutes les paroisses du pays, descendent à la Cathédrale de l’Immaculée Conception pour célébrer le jubilée d’or presbytéral de Monseigneur Denis Wiehe, évêque du diocèse de Port Victoria.

Ordonné prêtre il y a 50 ans, précisément le 17 août 1969 à l’île Maurice, son pays natal, où il a passé la majeure partie de sa vie consacrée, Monseigneur Denis Wiehe a pris la charge du diocèse de Port Victoria il y 18 ans.

 

17.08: The first ever edition of The Islander Weekly, a new newspaper produced by newly registered political party One Seychelles, and its online version The Islander Online, are officially launched, a day after certification documents confirming One Seychelles as a political party were presented to its president Alain St Ange.

The publication, priced at R10, will be circulated weekly and is positioned as part of independent publications.

 

19.08: Delegations from the European Union (EU) and Seychelles start the first round of negotiations for a new Sustainable Fisheries Partnership Agreement and Protocol.

The Sustainable Fisheries Partnership Agreement (SFPA) is the bilateral framework to be agreed by both Parties that will allow EU fishing vessels to carry out their fishing operations in Seychelles EEZ, establishing the principles, rule and procedures governing the economic, financial, technical, and scientific aspect of this cooperation, including conditions for EU fishing vessels gaining access to Seychelles EEZ, and the management, control and surveillance measures governing their activities.

 

24.08: Danny Faure is endorsed as United Seychelles’ candidate for the presidential election to be held next year.

The decision is taken through a motion and vote at the party’s 33rd annual congress.

Mr Faure was the only nominee who expressed an interest to stand for the party in the next election.

 

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The government of India donates a cash grant of R35 million to the Seychelles government to carry out 16 small community high impact projects on Mahé, Praslin and La Digue.

The grant was initiated and signed during President Danny Faure’s State visit to India in June 2018.

 

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A l’invitation du Ministre des Affaires étrangères, de la Coopération Internationale et de la Francophonie de l’Union des Comores, Monsieur Souef Mohamed El-Amine, le Vice-Président de la République et Président du Conseil des Ministres de la Commission de l’Océan Indien (COI), Monsieur Vincent Meriton, se rend à Moroni, aux Comores où se tient une retraite politique regroupant les Etats membres de la COI.

La retraite ministérielle se situe dans le cadre d’une décision sur l’évolution institutionnelle prise lors du dernier Conseil des Ministres réuni en septembre dernier à Maurice et s’inscrit dans les efforts continus que mène la présidence seychelloise de la COI avec l’appui du secrétariat général pour aider à renforcer la coopération régionale et aussi à moderniser la Commission aussi bien sur le plan des ressources humaines et techniques, que sur le plan juridique et institutionnel.

 

 

September

12.09: Lynn Gillian Bilal has been appointed the new chief registration officer with effect from August 6, 2019.

Her appointment is approved and signed by the chairman of the Electoral Commission Danny Lucas under the Election Act (CAP 68A) Section 3(1).

Ms Bilal replaces Lorna Lepathy who was in the post since April 2015 until her sudden death in December 2017.

 

12.09: Sister Claire Houareau renews her vows of obedience, chastity and poverty which she took exactly 50 years ago.

 

20.09: Twenty-four families from the Beau Vallon and Bel Ombre districts receive the keys to their newly built homes during the official opening of the Pascal Village Housing Estate.

The estate comprises 16 three-bedroom houses and eight two-bedroom houses and individual units are much larger than those of other housing estates with a revamped colour scheme.

 

25.09: Some forty customs officers go on strike at the Cargo Terminal, Pointe Larue over what they have described as dissatisfaction with the increase in their pay that had been promised to them.

 

29.09: Nineteen-year-old business studies student Emilie Esparon is crowned Miss Regatta 2019 ahead of nine other contestants.

Besides being crowned Miss Regatta, Emilie also wins prizes for the Best Charity Project and Best Evening Gown.

 

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The National preparatory committee for the 250th anniversary of Seychelles and the department of culture launch a national costume competition.

The deadline to submit the design is scheduled for March 10, 2020 and the winner will be announced on May 25, 2020.

The designs should deal with the following questions: What in your traditions is worth spreading? What elements reflect our Seychellois values, traditions and culture? How do you bring the stories of our Seychellois traditional heritage and way of life to the modern world and context? And how would you bring forth through your design the Seychellois identity in a modern yet meaningful way?

 

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Staying true to their motto, the MAZ Millions team once again launch two new products – ‘Seychelles Tourism lottery’ and ‘Sports Experience lottery’ – that will benefit Seychellois and foreigners alike.

The two new lotteries are a world first giving foreigners a chance to travel to Seychelles, and football fanatics a chance to watch games live.

 

 

October

03.10: Seychelles and Japan officially sign off on the Japanese grant of R100 million, or around 800 Japanese Yen, which President Danny Faure had secured from the Japanese government in September during Ticad 7.

The grant is geared at improving the capacity of maritime safety.

 

08.10: To commemorate the 30th anniversary of civil society in Seychelles, the Citizens Engagement Platform Seychelles (Ceps) organises a half-day exhibition to display the contributions and achievements of the civil society over the decades.

 

11.10: Tania Bellard receives the UB Valedictorian award for best overall student at the University of Botswana.

This is the second consecutive year a Seychellois student is the recipient of this award.

 

17.10: To commemorate its 10th anniversary, the University of Seychelles (UniSey) organises a two-day exhibition to showcase the numerous milestones achieved by the institution over the decade.

The Big Up exhibition displays various press clippings of activities organised by UniSey over the years, as well as different artefacts, information about study programmes on offer as well as posters depicting outstanding performers from each year’s batch of graduates.

 

18.10: The Central Bank of Seychelles launches its 2020 scholarship programme aimed at attracting and inspiring outstanding individuals for employment in the financial services sector.

A new element for this edition is the introduction of the online scholarship portal, where all information on the scholarship is easily accessible and candidates can complete and submit their application online.

 

19.10: Members of the Cancer Concern Association (CCA) celebrate the 20th anniversary of their association.

The association started out twenty years with a small group of people but over two decades has gained over five hundred members.

 

21.10: Seychelles and the People’s Republic of Bangladesh sign a labour agreement which seeks to ensure protection of the rights of Bangladeshi workers in employment in Seychelles.

Through this agreement, Seychellois employers will now have to recruit Bangladeshi workers through only two approved recruitment agencies in Bangladesh, namely the Bangladesh Overseas Employment and Services Ltd (BOESL) and the Bureau of Manpower Employment Training (BMET).

 

24.10: The Aldabra Atoll Special Reserve of the Seychelles is recognised as an outstanding marine protected area (MPA) with a Blue Park designation.

The Marine Conservation Institute and its international science council makes this announcement during their Our Ocean Conference in Oslo, Norway.

Aldabra is awarded the Platinum Level Blue Park status which is the highest level award. A total of 16 MPAs now hold the prestigious Blue Park Award indicating that they meet the highest science-based standards for marine life protection and management.

 

29.10: Seychellois Maria Sullivan wins the Southern Africa Network for Biosciences – Nepad SANBio FemBioBiz season 3.

Co-owner of Exotic Scents, Mrs Sullivan wins first place with her new line of product – soap developed from coconut.

 

30.10 : Le premier vol de la compagnie aérienne nationale française Air France atterri à l’Aéroport International des Seychelles à Pointe Larue, sans grand fanfare, sauf pour un accueil traditionnel avec des camions à eau.

L’Airbus A330-200 qui effectue ce premier vol direct entre Paris-Charles de Gaulles jusqu’à Mahé a à son bord 222 passagers.

 

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Following a series of negotiations on the renewal of the Sustainable Fisheries Partnership Agreement and its accompanying protocol, Seychelles secures a total of €58.2 million, or about R902 million, in financial contribution from the European Union (EU) for the next six years.

This is an increase of more than €20 million from the financial contribution of the current six-year Fisheries Partnership Agreement which was negotiated at €30.7 million.

The new sum represents a distribution of €9.7 million or R150 million per year, of which a portion of this money goes toward enhancing the development of the artisanal and semi-artisanal fisheries sector.

 

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According to the findings of a study to measure radio frequency (RF) electronic magnetic field (EMF) radiation in Seychelles, there is no evidence which indicates that there are risks of radiation that are harmful to human health from the 25 sites explored in the study.

The measurement task, initiated by the Department of Information Communications Technology (DICT) in 2018, sought to address public concern as to the health implications of radiation exposure from base stations.

 

 

November

05.11: The first meeting of the marine protected area action group set up under the Commonwealth Blue Charter opens in Seychelles.

Agreed unanimously in April 2018, the Blue Charter commits all 53 Commonwealth Blue Charter to actively cooperate in solving ocean-related problems and ensure sustainable ocean development.

Seychelles is one of 12 countries that stepped forward to lead one of the nine action groups under the Blue Charter, more specifically the marine protected area action group.

 

06.11: The Red Cross Society of Seychelles (RCSS) gets a new, fully equipped ambulance on Praslin to replace the current one which had served them for almost 20 years.

The donation is from the government of Japan and forms part of the ‘Grant Assistance for Grassroots Human Security Projects’ (GGP) financial assistance programme. The scheme aims to support projects by various bodies for economic and social development.

 

07.11: Students and lecturers of the University of Seychelles (UniSey) are now able to freely access without internet connection a large variety of learning, teaching and other resource material through a digital library pilot project donated by the Unesco.

The digital library project, which is entitled ‘Building a culture of reading through digital media’, is also being piloted in other countries of the region namely the Comoros, Madagascar, Kenya, Uganda and South Sudan.

 

07.11: Japan officially opens an embassy in Seychelles.

Speaking at the official opening ceremony, Vice-President Vincent Meriton, who also holds the portfolio responsibility for foreign affairs, says: “The opening of an embassy here in Victoria in the heart of one of the smallest capitals in the world, by one of our key bilateral island partners, represents our commitment despite our geographical distances to bring closer our frontiers to share a common vision and through friendship to make a difference in this highly polarised and globalised world.”

 

09.11: The Citizens Engagement Platform Seychelles (Ceps) celebrates 30 years of existence as the civil society platform – 25 years as Lungos (Liaison Unit for Non-governmental Organisations) and 5 years as Ceps.

To mark this milestone, Ceps also launches a booklet with a brief outlook on the history and impact of volunteerism in Seychelles from the standpoint of civil society. Some members – Marie-Nella Azemia, Agnielle Payet and Michel Pierre – are also awarded for their services

 

09.11 : Un moment historique pour la communauté des sourds aux Seychelles et dans le développement de la langue des signes aux Seychelles – le dictionnaire ‘Langue des Signes Seychelloise’ est officiellement lancé.

Ce dictionnaire est le fruit d’un dur labeur de dix ans. La production de ce dictionnaire fait partie du "Projet de langage des signes seychellois (SSL)" lancé en 2011 par le gouvernement des Seychelles. Sa publication a été rendue possible grâce à un accord de partenariat entre l'Institut national des jeunes sourds, Paris (INJS), l'Association des personnes malentendantes à Mahé (APHI), le ministère de l'Éducation et du Développement des Ressources Humaines et l'Université de Lille3. Le projet a été confié à Alain Gébert de l’INJS et à Annie Risler de l’Université de Lille sous la supervision d’Anita Gardner.

 

11.11: Twelve law-enforcement agencies conduct an operation, under the Eastern Africa Police Chiefs Cooperation Organisation (EAPCCO) with regards to contraband, illicit drugs, fake products, human trafficking and wildlife crimes among others.

The exercise, dubbed Usamala, is a regional operation carried out annually and simultaneously by all member countries to deal with the rise of cross border and transnational crimes and reinforce police cooperation at national, regional and international levels.

 

15.11: President Danny Faure welcomes to State House Moses Pracht, a 28-year-old German national of Seychellois origin who was adopted by a German couple after being abandoned as a newborn at Anse Des Genets in March 1991.

Mr Pracht recounted how he was abandoned as a newborn at a rubbish bin, in a tied plastic bag. On the night of Saturday March 24, 1991, a passer-by heard the baby’s cry and alerted the Cascade police. The Superintendent at the time, now Commissioner of Police, Kishnan Labonte, ensured the baby was taken to Victoria Hospital and given the required care.

 

15.11: The status of Seychelles’ Institute of Early Childhood Development (IECD) as a Unesco Global Category II Institute for Early Childhood Care and Development (ECCD) is unanimously approved at the 40th session of the Unesco general conference.

The geographical scope of the Unesco Category II Institute means that Seychelles has acceded to a global recognition as a leader in this field. This is over and above the recognition of the IECD as the IBE-Unesco Best Practice Hub for ECCD, and represents a much higher and institutionally, more sustainable recognition.

 

18.11: Former tourism minister Alain St Ange wins his case against the Seychelles government for withdrawing his candidacy for the post of secretary-general of the United Nations World Tourism Organisation in 2017 at the last minute.

Supreme Court Judge Melchior Vidot rules in favour of Mr St Ange in his case against the government, awarding him damages in the sum of R164,396.14 (approximately US $12,000).

Mr St Ange however says he has already instructed his lawyer Frank Elizabeth to appeal against the quantum of damages only, as he feels that it does not reflect his expenses, pain, humiliation and psychological damage that the decision caused him.

 

19.11: Seychelles joins the rest of the world in celebrating thirty years of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC).

Seychelles was among the first countries to ratify this convention in 1990 so that children could be protected as well as benefit from free education, healthcare and more.

To commemorate this milestone, the National Council for Children in collaboration with other partners organise a grand exhibition at the National Museum of History.

 

20.11: The Seychelles Pension Fund (SPF) announces that it has acquired a 20 percent equity share ownership in the telecommunication company Cable & Wireles Seychelles for a sum of US $24 million, amounting to around R340 million.

This follows the acquisition of Cable & Wireless Seychelles by a consortium of local entrepreneurs, namely, the Joe Albert Group, Jamshed Pardiwalla, Ravi Raghwani, Andy Bainbridge and professional services firm, ACM.

 

20.11: A new housing estate, Orchid Village, located at the ex-Indian Ocean nursery at Barbarons in the Grand Anse Mahé district, is officially opened.

Orchid Village is one of three projects that have been made possible through a grant given by the Abu Dhabi government and administered by the Abu Dhabi Fund for Development.

The village consists of 42 units, 20 of which have two bedrooms and 22 three bedrooms in addition to a parking lot and a sewage treatment plant.

 

22.11: Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II recognises Victorin Laboudallon, representing Seychelles, as the 118th Commonwealth Point of Light in honour of his exceptional voluntary service championing conservation in Seychelles.

Outside of his professional career in conservation, Mr Laboudallon is also the founder of Terrestrial Restoration Action Society of Seychelles (Trass) which has mobilised thousands of volunteers to repopulate Praslin with an average of 15,000 plants every year.

 

27.11 : Gran gannyan 5enm edisyon pri literer Antoine Abel i resevwar zot pri.

Marie Hoarau i sorti konman gran venker dan kategori roman avek son travay ki annan pour tit ‘Rozina’, ensi byen ki dan kategori zistwar kourt avek ‘Dan en non’.

Ekriven, poet e serser dan langaz kreol, Aneesa Vel i sorti meyer dan kategori poezi avek son rekey poenm entitile ‘Maniskri mon leker’.

Konkour Antoine Abel i en konkour nasyonal ki ti ganny relanse an 2007 pour promouvwar literatir kreol, ankouraz bann ekriven pour tranp plim dan lank e fer travay zot limazinasyon ensi byen ki ankouraz Seselwa pour lir literatir kreol.

 

29.11 : Vennsenk (25) fanmir in resevwar lakle zot lakaz kot louvertir ofisyel en nouvo vilaz Anse Aux Poules Bleues, en sou distrik Baie Lazare.

Sa trwa blok lakaz ki premye faz proze pour sa vilaz i form parti proze 24 lakaz pour sa distrik e i konpri 16 younit trwa lasanm ek 9 younit de lasanm ki fer en total 25 younit lakaz antou.

 

29.11: Zil Air, the premium provider of aerial limo services in the Seychelles, adds a new aircraft to its fleet.

The P2012 Tecnam Traveller S7-ADM, referred to as ADAM, touches down at the Seychelles International Airport after a 4,500 nautical mile journey from the Tecnam factory in Italy where it was built.

ADAM departed the Tecnam base in Italy on November 23, 2019 under the command of captains Gerhard Geyer, John Rachel and Anthony Hoareau.

The delivery flight flew over Italy, Greece, Egypt, Sudan, Kenya and Tanzania to finally reach Seychelles.

 

29.11: Seychelles Breweries Ltd launches its new product, SeyBrew Lite.

Bottled in 280ml returnable glass bottles, SeyBrew Lite has been designed as an ultra-premium and lighter version of the country-wide popular SeyBrew beer.

While its big brother, SeyBrew, contains 4.9% alcohol per volume, SeyBrew Lite has a lower alcohol content of 4.2%.

 

 

 

December

01.12: Twenty-nine-year-old Chimwemwe Kamkwamba, Miss Deaf Malawi, is crowned Miss Deaf Africa while 18-year-old Darlene Lucile, Miss Deaf Mauritius, is Miss Deaf Indian Ocean.

Miss Deaf Mauritius, apart from winning the crown for Miss Deaf Indian Ocean, also clinches the crown for 1st Princess while Miss Deaf Zimbabwe, 19-year-old Takudzwa Phiri, clinches the 2nd Princess title.

Miss Personality goes to Miss Deaf Mozambique, Tania Maciel, while Miss Photogenic goes to Miss Deaf Reunion, Oceane Dorval.

The winners win prize money ranging between €500 and €800 as well as return tickets to Seychelles.

 

04.12: The chargé d’affaires for United Arab Emirates, Ahmed Saeed Alneyadi, announces that 20 fully funded scholarships will be awarded to Seychellois students who wish to pursue further studies at university level in the United Arab Emirates.

The government of Seychelles will decide on the fields of study based on its manpower priority needs.

06.12: Mita Charlette, a volunteer from Waso (Women in Action and Solidarity Organisation) wins the Best Volunteer Award during the third Volunteer Award ceremony organised by the Citizens Engagement Platform Seychelles (Ceps).

Les Li Viv wins the Best Association award while Alvania Lawen grabs the ‘Achille Kwame Luc’ Award, a newly introduced award to honour the time and service rendered by the late Achille Luc. This award is targeted towards people who are dedicating their lives towards the betterment of society.

 

09.12: The seventh seminar for Port State Control Officers (PSCOs) opens at the Berjaya Beau Vallon Bay Resort.

The five-day seminar, organised by IOMOU in association with the Seychelles Maritime Safety Administration (SMSA), aims to group together senior port officials from the region to discuss further solutions to control the plying of sub-standard ships in the region in accordance with regulations and conventions drawn up by the International Maritime Organisation (IMO).

 

09.12: Ambassadors and representatives of the 54 African states convene at the Savoy Seychelles Resort & Spa for the opening day of the Annual Retreat of the African Permanent Representatives and the United Nations (UN)) Economic Commission for Africa (ECA), as part of the Commission’s efforts towards strengthening the opening dialogue with member states on key development priorities that will lead to accelerated development results in Africa.

 

10.12: The Seychelles Fire and Rescue Services Agency (SFRSA) officially receives a fire boat from the United Arab Emirates (UAE).

The boat, which has cost R2.8 million, holds a twin 120 gallon tank and 2X 300 horse power (HP) outboard engines which can achieve high speed from 45 to 50 knots.

The boat can cater for six seated fire fighters with additional standing manpower. Fixed with a modern navigation system, it is thus specifically equipped to take care of any fire emergencies arising on ships and ports.

 

12.12: The Seychelles Scouts Association (SSA) hosts its first Indian Ocean Youth forum under the theme ‘Be the change you want to see in the world’.

The Youth Scout forum is attended by over thirty plus delegates from the Comoros, Mauritius, and Madagascar.

It has been 12 years since the last forum was held in 2007.

 

13.12: The Red Giant ‘Zerkleinerer’ waste shredder, a first for Seychelles, is officially handed over to the Landscape and Waste Management Agency (LWMA).

The shredder has been acquired partly from a R3 million grant from the Environment Trust Fund and the remaining R6 million from the government.

As demonstrated in a small ceremony on Friday, the Red Giant can shred a number of bulky waste including cars, large tree trunks and timber, tyres, metals as well as appliances such as washing machines and refrigerators.

 

13.12: Three blocks of flats, comprising 24 units of the Le Domaine Housing Estate, located at Au Cap, are presented to 24 priority applicants of the Housing Point System.

The units, comprising eight two-bedroom units and sixteen three-bedroom units, have cost R19.2 million.

 

14.12: Katiolo nightclub, perhaps one of the most iconic nightclubs in Seychelles which has stood the test of time since its establishment in 1974, re-opens its doors to the public after a two-year closure period.

The family-owned nightclub, originally run and managed by founder Simon Esparon who sadly passed away in 2017, remains in the hands of his son and daughter, David Esparon and Brigitte Esparon, who intend to continue with their father’s legacy and to work to accomplish their father’s vision for the business, where he spent the majority of his time.

 

14.12: The Ministry of Health and India-based software solution provider Mamorama Infosolutions PVT Ltd sign a contract for a project to digitise patient records through a national Health Information System (HIS).

The project is expected to improve healthcare, bring information online, optimise resource allocation, and have patient satisfaction improved significantly, according to the chief executive of the Health Care Agency Dr Danny Louange.

 

20.12: The Office of the President announces that health minister Jean-Paul Adam will be leaving the Cabinet at the end of January 2020 to take up a new role with the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (Uneca).

Minister Adam will be taking up the position of director for climate change, environment and sustainable development within the Uneca secretariat based in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.

 

20.12: Wilhelmine Anette, en madanm santener dan distrik Anse Royale, i selebre son lanniverser 104-an.

Madanm Anette, ki ti ne le 20 Desanm 1915, ti annan wit zanfan e ladan de in mor.

 

21.12: The national preparatory committee for the 250th anniversary of Seychelles in collaboration with the Central Bank of Seychelles (CBS) releases two commemorative coins minted to mark the occasion.

According to CBS governor Caroline Abel the coin is one of the commemorative items that will be on sale as a keepsake for the celebration.

 

29.12: In commemoration of its 40th anniversary, the Central Bank of Seychelles launches a commemorative book, detailing the history and numerous milestones of the institution over the past four decades.

The commemorative book showcases the former and current board of directors, as well as the governors who have been at the helm of the institution over the years, to date. It also provides an overview of the origin of central banking in Seychelles, including the creation of the Seychelles Monetary Authority and subsequently the birth of the Central Bank of Seychelles as it is known today. The book also focuses on the key highlights and milestones that have transpired thus far.

 

 

Compiled by R.A.

 

 

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