Wednesday, July 22, 2015


A National Day Address reply

From the Party for Social Justice and Democracy

Yes, President Michel 39 years ago, our little country became an independent state. It was indeed a glorious event, so historic it was a moment of joy. That moment of glory, that moment of hope which all Seychellois had been waiting for, when we would become the masters of our destiny. How little did we know at the time that 39 years later we would not be the masters of our destiny, how little did we know that in our country we would have no value because when foreigners would flood our shores asking for a “hand’ you would give them our arms, our legs, our stomachs, our land, our jobs, our houses and our beaches.

At midnight on the 29th of June 1976, President James Mancham and Prime Minister Albert René – the two persons that would betray Seychelles and the Seychellois Nation but in different ways and for different reasons, held hands and waved to the exuberant crowd. We were aware that the road ahead would be long and difficult but we did not expect it to be treasonous. We were aware of the challenges ahead, but we did not expect the blood of innocent Seychellois to be spilt, neither did we expect an exodus of our people from our shores. We were filled with the hopes of a free and independent people. Even on that night, one man knew that our hope of freedom and independence was going to be short lived and our nation would be doomed and cursed because no land flourishes when it is watered with blood. Cleanse our land and our country President Michel!

 In your speech you talk about participatory government would that be an indication that you realize that there should be a diffusion of power so that it is no longer concentrated in the hands of a few “because power corrupts and absolute power corrupts absolutely.” Hence the decision to “involve them in governance, in decisions that concern their everyday lives. Give people the power to manage their communities, their districts, in ways that are democratic, free and efficient?” For your information President Michel, in 1949, there was the creation of the first District Council by Sir Percy Selwyn Clarke one of our colonial governors.

In your speech you also emphasize upon the small and medium enterprise sector, saying that its development is a key element of the strategy and plan of your government to make available more opportunities for our youth, and generally, to empower our people. We have already put in place the tools, and we will continue to introduce all the measures which help the development and blossoming of small and medium enterprises in a harmonious and equitable manner. Wonderful words Mr. President so I will list below one company so that the people of Seychelles can see for themselves how you have “helped small and medium enterprise in a harmonious and equitable manner” by creating and allowing the creation of a mammoth Godzilla type conglomerate called “Corvina Investment Company Ltd”

Some shareholders of Corvina hiding behind other companies
Corvina Investment Company Ltd is their main holding company, the vehicle by which they hold interests in many companies of which a few others are also listed here: Societe Seychelloise de Navigation Ltd – Silhouette Cruises Ltd - Presafe Services Ltd. Mahe Investment Ltd - McKenzie (Seychelles) Ltd - Liquid Air (Seychelles) Ltd - Indian Ocean Marine Ltd - Kingsgate Investment Ltd - La Domaine Ltd. Forgive me for saying that your words no matter how wonderful are yet another ruse to delude the voters to give you another mandate, with no substance. The activities of Corvina quoted above are at least 9 years old, if its real interests and activities were updated and published what would really be left for the “small to medium enterprise” to engage in? Picking pet bottles, grass cutting, road cleaning agency to name but a few that are left for “small to medium enterprise”?

Glendine Holdings(Proprietary) Ltd is owned by Glenny Savy and his wife. Hillside Investments(Proprietary) Ltd is owned by Guy Adam and his wife. Sirrus Investments(Proprietary) Ld is owned solely by David Savy. Pangaea Portraits Ltd is owned by Albert Renes former accountant and his wife; Adrian Skerret. The question is; is this nepotism on a massive scale?

Shareholders of Glendine Holdings

As from next year government will subsidise the installation of solar panels for families that meet certain criteria, mainly the collective household income. It will also be compulsory for every new house and building to have its own solar panels installed. Here, too, a certain level of subvention may be applicable, depending on set criteria. Mr. President we all know what the “set criteria is’ Are you with Lepep or are you a member of the Opposition? it is the continued use of the specific criteria that has reduced the vast majority of the people to surviving on the poverty line.

 Mr. President in 2004, the UN General Assembly adopted a resolution that lays out seven ‘essential elements’ of democracy, including:
•Separation and balance of power
• Independence of the judiciary
• A pluralistic system of political parties and organisations
• Respect for the rule of law
• Accountability and transparency
 • Free, independent and pluralistic media
 • Respect for human and political rights; e.g., freedoms of association and expression; the right to vote and to stand in elections.

After 39 year of independence does Seychelles meet the above criteria? In your view, based on the above is Seychelles a democratic State?

The promotion and protection of all human rights is a prerequisite for a democratic society, political systems with a mere façade of a multi-party system, which disguises a pattern of state-sponsored domination of one or several parties, fall short of this core element of democracy.

The freedom of political debate, along with freedom of association and assembly, are at the centre of the concept of democracy, essential elements of which include fundamental freedoms, inter alia, freedom of association and peaceful assembly and of expression and opinion. The right to freedom of expression has wide-ranging implications on the access of opposition parties to state controlled media, for election campaign regulations, media legislation and citizens’ rights to access to information. Freedom of assembly protects intentional, temporary gatherings of several persons for a specific purpose and has a clear democratic function in the process of forming, expressing and implementing political opinions. Freedom of association is indispensable for a democracy, because political interests can be effectively championed only in community with others (as a political party, professional interest group, organisation or other association for pursuing particular public interests).

All the above President Michel, are enshrined in our Constitution.

A.Amesbury & A.Pierre