Minister Joubert familiarises himself with climate change, environment departments | 18 November 2020
Agriculture, Climate Change and Environment Minister Flavien Joubert has called on staff in his ministry to work and deliver in an effective manner so as to serve and meet the expectations of members of the public.
He has also stressed on the need to put into practice the law enforcement in place and for better public education about concerned issues for better protection of the environment so as to keep Seychelles clean and free from illegal environmental activities.
Minister Joubert made these statements yesterday afternoon following a familiarisation visit to the climate change and environment departments.
The aim of the visit was for him to familiarise with the roles and functions of those departments while also presenting to them the objectives of the new ministry to get things done effectively. He at the same time listened to the staff’s concerns.
Accompanied by the principal secretary for environment Alain Decomarmond and principal secretary for climate change Wills Agricole, Minister Joubert started his visit at the department of environment and the department of climate change based at the Botanical Garden. The visit at the two departments was followed by a visit, further up the Botanical Garden, to the National Botanical Garden Foundation administrative office. He was accompanied there by the chief executive, Raymond Brioche, board chairman Andre Rassool and other board members and PS Decomarmond.
From the Botanical Garden, Minister Joubert visited the biodiversity conservation and management division at Aarti Chambers, the programme coordinating unit and United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) office at Le Chantier Mall.
“The visit was for me an opportunity to get a conversation with the staff at the different locations visited, to explain to them my intentions as the new minister, the ministry’s objectives and challenges in terms of setting national targets to work towards and deliver. It was also for me an opportunity to get to know them and see how we can work together and find ways how to get things done more effectively,” said Minister Joubert, noting that he will not be micro-managing the different departments or agencies as the people in charge are supposed to know the missions and targets to be met.
“We should set objectives and know where we need to go, we also must be able to monitor those objectives and also be able to report at the end of the year on where we are with regard to those objectives,” Minister Joubert said, highlighting on his intentions to initiate environmental quality objectives and targets for people to abide by.
Minister Joubert claimed that the environmental quality objectives will be dependent on the enforcement policies and public education awareness, which are key to the sustainability of the environment. Elaborating further on enforcement, he said the first thing to do is to make sure that people in enforcement understand their roles and are also given the necessary skills to boost their confidence to apply themselves.
With regard to public education, he stated that a professional pool of people with good background in mass communication, is needed to join the present team for effective and frequent communication with the public on environmental issues.
“We want people to know what we are doing with regard to environment and also through our enforcement they will get to know their roles as to what they can do and cannot do to the environment,” Minister Joubert said, noting that constant communication with the public will get them to adhere to rules and regulations.
Minister Joubert stated that apart from enforcement and public education, other priorities include eradication of invasive species, the state of our forest and the set-up of the ministry and departments with regard to the right people in the right place to fit the long term objective of the country.
“My mandate is not to trim down but to bring about more efficiency and more efficacy in what we are doing,” he added, claiming that people are moved around during re-organisations and changes to ensure that performance is met.
“Environment remains one of the key strong points for Seychelles, something that we’ll have to keep working on, and delivering for the environment is something that we really have to push for and we have to make sure that people with responsibility for the environment really deliver,” said Minister Joubert, noting that no staff will lose their job.
Minister Joubert said he is most concerned about the erosion of our coastline, the impact of climate change on our natural environment. Other areas needing special attention include the impact of man-made activities on the natural environment, pollution, waste and invasive species.
The accompanying photographs show some highlights of Minister Joubert’s visit yesterday.