“Gouverner pour le peuple – avec le peuple”
Dear Sir Anerood Jugnauth
Congratulations on your election victory, but there is something you need to know. Many of us didn’t vote for you. We voted against Ramgoolam. If you had been allied with him, you would surely have been humiliated instead of Bérenger. Do we have blind faith in you? No. It was not without reason that you were crushed 60-0 in 1995. In 2000, you were given another chance, but your party failed to live up to expectations and was replaced once more. Of course, the alternative turned out to be even worse. Will you do better this time? We hope so.
To the Ministry of Environment and Sustainable Development.
We are delighted to provide feedback on the reports of the Working Groups for the MID policy development and indeed privileged to be part of the one on energy. Overall, we are happy with much of the work done so far and the comments below focus on exceptions to this. We also attempt to address some of the important issues we feel are missing from the reports and try to synthesise conflicting recommendations. After suggesting improvements to the MID process, we will turn to the security of the economy, nutrition, electricity and transport and then land use conflicts and nutrient recycling. Finally, we comment on individual recommendations that we consider notable. Continue reading
Here is our take. What do you think?
By 2025, Mauritius will be a global leader in terms of quality of life. Our economy will serve this goal by providing equal opportunities and fair rewards in return for meaningful contribution to our collective well-being and supplying the highest quality goods and services to the world. Our society will provide security for every citizen, including food, shelter, health and personal safety. We will also enjoy the fullest freedoms of religion, expression and relationships, while respecting the rights and sensitivities of others and preserving and celebrating our diverse heritages. Our government will be transparent, accountable and inclusive, rivalling those of traditional democracies and our legal system and human rights record will be second to none. Our systems of education, training and development will be the best in Africa, permitting each of us to explore ourselves, discover our talents and achieve our full potential in any field, at any age. Our unique environment and biodiversity will be cherished, protected and, where possible, restored to its original pristine state, with each citizen and visitor enjoying equal rights of access and responsibility for its care. Above all, we will be a model of sustainability, ensuring that future generations enjoy a quality of life at least as great as our own and inspiring other nations by our example.
Last year’s public consultation exercise on the vision for Maurice Ile Durable has finally yielded its long overdue green paper. This is important because the government will use it to formulate a Common Shared Vision for MID and subsequent policy. The green paper proposes two visions and the Ministry of Environment has invited feedback on them by 8th May. What are your views and opinions?
We encourage you to read the article below about a fantastic initiative by a group of students, called the Golden Team, who are transforming their concern for those less fortunate than themselves into concrete action. Recognising that disabled children are unable to access Mauritius’ “free” education system, they have taken it upon themselves to right this social injustice. They are supported by the Minister of Education, Dr Vasant Bunwaree, who, of course, is the one responsible for this glaring failure to provide educational opportunities for all. Why is he delighted to do so? Because these charitable students will fill the gap at a fraction of the costs that would be incurred by the Government.
Those of us who can trace their roots back to Africa continue to suffer from institutionalised discrimination. The announcement this week that the government will introduce Kreol as an optional subject in primary schools to help the disadvantaged to read and write, adds insult to injury. Not only that, it goes against the government’s own 2005-2010 strategy for primary education.
This excellent document promised to eliminate the CPE examination, a “de-loading” of the academic content and the implementation of an holistic, 21st century curriculum. It recognised the challenge faced by children because the language of instruction (English) is not the language of the home (Kreol or Bhojpuri) but reinforced that English-based education opens up the greatest opportunities for our children as citizens of an interconnected world. One wonders if the current Minister of Education has even read it.
The curse of long hours in private tuition after school and at weekends means that most children have neither the time nor the energy to engage in extra-curricular activities. Therefore, the Model United Nations (MUN) conference stands out as a beacon on an relatively barren landscape of citizenship building activities. It is not surprising that some students become very attached to this event, talk of their first involvement as a life-changing moment and return to help the following year.
The MUN conference is a large scale role play of the activities of the UN General Assembly and its various committees, commissions and councils. It is, without doubt, an amazing feat of organisation and one wonders if it could possibly exist in Mauritius without the indefatigable contribution of the lead coordinator, Mr Narain Dabee. It provides students with an opportunity to debate, practice diplomacy and extend their grasp of global issues. It also gives them a rare opportunity to interact with their peers from other schools.