Monday, August 4, 2014

Obama government calls for repeal of the Seychelles Public Order Act

Blue eyed boy, Minister Jean Paul Adam got much more than he bargained for. Following the release of the Human Rights Report by the US Department of State, the blue eyed minister was quick to dismiss every single word of it and publicly invited the US Department of State to come to Seychelles where they would have firsthand experience of our human rights situation. This bluff has been played several times and he has been successful in marshaling rapporteurs in government’s favour but the US would not be bluffed.

The US promptly responded by sending the second most official of the Department of State in Africa, Ambassador Robert Jackson. Ambassador Jackson did not come to assess the situation; he was clear in his mind what he had to do. He was here to inform the government of Seychelles on behalf of the government of the US that what they were doing was unacceptable. The POA (Public Order Act) must be amended or repealed, he stressed. His juniors must have been more forceful in the closed deliberations they had at State House. We keep wondering where James Michel was at the time while Danny Faure was in the firing line. Minister Adam must have stayed moot. What an embarrassment after so much hype about the country’s unblemished human rights record. The NHRC will do well to take note.

As the Americans bring the POA issue to White House, it is clear that the US government will not enter into any new programs with Michel’s government. With the economy in shambles and the debt repayment kicking in incrementally, Michel must be scratching his head real hard. Taken into account America’s influence worldwide, the IMF and World Bank assistance may well experience certain delays or may never even materialize into concrete actions.
2 Citizens illegally arrested and held in custody for peaceful sit down protest 

 Michel and his autocratic government have landed the country into a difficult situation. He has always blamed the opposition for campaigning against the interest of Seychelles but now everyone knows without a shadow of a doubt who is really putting the interest of the nation in jeopardy. His aggressive diplomacy has suffered a serious setback; he has himself to blame. Bluffing the international community has backfired. We hope Michel comes to his senses and repeals that law that is the POA as soon as practicable. He is leading this country towards international economic sanction and it is the people of Seychelles that will suffer.