Indian-origin Wavel Ramkalawan was elected as the Seychelles President. Since 1977 this is the first time, the opposition candidate has won elections in Seychelles.
Seychelles was a British colony till 1976. A year after its independence, in 1977 Danny Faure (last president) seized power in a coup and retained presidency in elections. Danny Faure was in power till multi-party democracy was restored in the country in 1993.
About Wavel Ramkalawan
Wavel Ramkalawan was born in Seychelles’s Mahe island (largest island). Ramkalawan grandfather was from Bihar in India. Ramkalawan did his schooling and college in Seychelles. Wavel Ramkalawan was an ordained priest following theological studies in Mauritius.
Ramkalawan role in Politics
In 1992, multi-party democracy was launched. Wavel Ramkalawan could only form the opposition. Later, Ramkalawan led his party in the subsequent elections in 1998, 2001, 2006. In all these elections he could only become an opposition. In 2020 election he has won securing 54.9 per cent of the votes.
Impacts on India
Wavel Ramkalawan considers India as the major partner of Seychelles. According to him, piracy threats, drugs and poaching are the main security concerns in the Indian Ocean Region (IOR). Presently, India is also concentrating on these 3 in the IOR. However, Ramkalawan announced that Seychelles would never agree to build naval bases of United States of America or India.
In 2018, India and Seychelles agreed to build a joint military facility on a portion of the Assumption Islands of Seychelles. There are public protests going on in the country regarding the facility that Seychelles should stay out of India-China regional conflicts.
India helped Seychelles to construct hydrological maps. India agreed to give the Dornier DO-228 aircraft to Seychelles. Since 2001 Both countries have been conducting “Lamitye” military exercise.
Seychelles is an archipelago of 115 islands in the Indian Ocean. Also, it is home coral reefs, beaches and nature reserves. The Green Turtle, an endangered species is found in the Island country.
Wavel Ramkalawan Seychelles new President