Letter to the Editor | 13 February 2020
Re: Diplomatic passport holder
I refer to your article ‘LDS condemns airport search by ANB on presidential candidate Wavel Ramkalawan’.
I do not wish to comment on the substance of the LDS communiqué. However, may I respectfully point out that a Seychellois holder of a diplomatic passport holds no special rights or privileges while on Seychelles territory. Such rights and privileges, as stipulated by the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations (1961), are accorded to him/her upon undertaking an official mission (i.e. government-mandated) or being posted to a foreign State. It is a process which is coordinated by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the sending State. However, while courtesies may be afforded to a Seychellois holder of a diplomatic passport not on an official mission to a foreign country, this is at the discretion of the government of that country. This is normal and internationally recognised diplomatic practice.
That the Hon. Wavel Ramkalawan is entitled to respect, certain rights and privileges due to his office as leader of the opposition is an unquestionable fact. That, however, is a matter best addressed by the authorities concerned.
Amb. Alain Butler Payette
Former principal secretary
Ministry of Foreign Affairs