Seychelles new President Danny Rollen Faure who was sworn in as the fourth President of the Republic of Seychelles on Sunday 16th October, 2016, at State House – on Monday 17th October met with two of the country’s Heads of State who have played a significant role in the country’s history.
Former Presidents James Alix Michel and Sir James Richard Mancham were the first personalities Mr Faure met at State on Monday morning – less than 24 hours after taking over the presidency from Mr Michel on Sunday afternoon. Mr France Albert Rene who ruled the country for more than 15 years as One Party State was unable to attend the occasion for health reasons.
President Faure said it is important that the first personalities he meets as the new President are the former Heads of State, who have played a significant role in the history of Seychelles and that they will continue to do so in promoting Seychelles in international fora and also give advice on national development.
“I’m very happy to benefit from the wisdom of two former heads of state, and I’m very happy that they have shown their willingness to continue to help Seychelles and my government in the promotion of peace, security, the Blue economy, and climate change, where we are very strong as a nation. So we will have two very important advocates in these fields,” said President Faure following the meeting.
They discussed the importance of the Structure of State, several matters concerning international relations, as well as national reconciliation efforts.
Speaking to the media after the meeting, Sir James said after receiving the invitation from President Faure to attend the meeting, he felt it his duty to be present and show respect for the Structure of State.
“I have congratulated President Faure on his commitment to search for national reconciliation to bring national unity in our country.”
The recent National Assembly elections showed that the country was equally divided between Michel’s Party (Lepep) and an alliance of Opposition parties styled ‘Linyon Demokratik Seselwa’ (LDS).
“I have also expressed my concerns vis-à-vis the political situation as the country is polarised. We have two blocs. One bloc is not happy with what is going on and brings it to the streets. The other bloc does the same thing the following week. At some point the police will feel that such marches should stop as they bring instability to the country and this is when one bloc will not agree and will still take to the streets. This is when the riot squad will be called to disperse people taking part in an unlawful assembly. Some people are beaten and this makes national reconciliation more difficult. As there is turmoil the army is called in and this is when we have a military takeover. Subsequently, there will be more demonstrations to get the military out and return to civil rule,” said Sir James.
He added that as “Seychelles has cultivated a reputation of being an oasis of peace in a troubled world, if we say we are working in the interest of our people, please let us not take decisions which go against the people’s interest.”
Founding President Mancham stressed that he was happy to see the Speaker of the National Assembly, Patrick Pillay, present at the inauguration ceremony on Sunday.
“This proves that he respects the State’s structure and I hope everyone can capitalise on the expressed goodwill to arrive at a consensus in favour of national reconciliation,” concluded Sir James.