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Prime Minister's Office>Cabinet Decisions taken on 03 October 2008

Cabinet Decisions taken on 03 October 2008

1. Cabinet has taken note that, following the incident which occurred on 29 September 2008 at Fort George Power Station whereby three employees of the CEB suffered serious burns, the CEB has appointed a Consultant from Burmeister & Wain Scandinavian Contractor, which was responsible for the installation and commissioning of the engines, to carry out a thorough investigation on the incident. The Consultant has already started investigation and would submit his findings by next week.

2. Cabinet has taken note of steps being taken for the introduction of Summer Time, which will start on 26 October 2008 at 02.00 am and end on 29 March 2009 at 02.00 am, viz -
(i) setting up of a Working Group comprising representatives of the Ministry of Renewable Energy and Public Utilities, the Ministry of Finance and Economic Empowerment, the Central Electricity Board (CEB), the Joint Economic Council and the Maurice Ile Durable Fund to oversee the implementation process;
(ii) mounting of a national campaign to sensitize the public, private sector operators and public institutions on the benefits of the introduction of Summer Time; and
(iii) installation by the CEB of electronic metres in selected residential areas, commercial centres and industrial enterprises in different regions of the island to assess the consumption of electricity prior to the introduction of Summer Time and during the Summer Time.

3. Cabinet has taken note of the additional measures taken by the Ministry of Health and Quality of Life and the Ministry for Consumer Protection and Citizens Charter, with the collaboration of the Association des Consommateurs de l’Ile Maurice and the Institute of Consumer Protection, to ensure that foodstuffs suspected of containing melamine and rhodamine are not put on sale on the local market, and to create awareness on the risks associated with the consumption of foodstuffs with incriminated substances, viz -
(i) No health clearance in respect of milk and milk-based products from China is being granted for the time being; and
(ii) the Health Inspectorate Division of the Ministry of Health and Quality of Life is taking food samples for analysis to detect the presence of other non-permissible chemicals, such as sudan dye, metanil yellow, dimethyl yellow and para red. Consultations are, also, being held with food processors to enlist their collaboration in ensuring that permissible food colours only are used in the process.
Cabinet has also taken note that a Protocol has been established to strengthen the mechanism of reporting and handling cases of food poisoning at the various hospitals and health centres.

4. Cabinet has taken note of activities organized jointly by the Ministry of Education, Culture and Human Resources and the Aapravasi Ghat Trust Fund (AGTF) on 2 November 2008 to commemorate the 174th anniversary of the arrival of indentured labourers in Mauritius, viz.-
(i) wreath-laying ceremony;
(ii) multi-faith prayer;
(iii) cultural items;
(iv) launching of the 6th edition of AGTF newsletter;
(v) prize giving to winners of song and ‘Bande Dessinée’ competitions on “Indenture and History of the Aapravasi Ghat”; and
(vi) launching of a permanent exhibition on the Outstanding Universal Value of the Aapravasi Ghat.

5. Cabinet has taken note that, to mark the “Journée Internationale Créole”, the Nelson Mandela Centre for African Culture would, on 28 October 2008, organize a cultural programme on the Football Ground (Public Beach) at Grand Gaube.

6. Cabinet has taken note of developments in the implementation of infrastructural projects by the Ministry of Health and Quality Life, with a view to providing universal, accessible and efficient health services with due emphasis on the concept of customer care. The projects in the pipeline are, inter alia, -
(a) setting up of an Accident and Emergency Department at SSRNH;
(b) upgrading of Dr A.G. Jeetoo Hospital;
(c) construction of an additional block at Flacq Hospital, a Medi-Clinic at Plaine Verte and a Neuro and Spinal Block at Victoria Hospital; and
(d) renovation of Mahebourg Hospital.

7. Cabinet has agreed to Mauritius ratifying the Optional Protocol to the Convention on the Elimination of all Forms of Discrimination Against Women which was signed by Mauritius in 2001. The Optional Protocol reaffirms the determination of State Parties, which adopt the Protocol, to ensure the full and equal enjoyment by women of all human rights and the fundamental freedoms and to take effective action to prevent violation of the rights and freedoms provided for in the Convention. The Protocol establishes procedures to receive and consider communications submitted by or on behalf of individuals, under the jurisdiction of a State Party, claiming to be victims of violation of any of the rights set forward in the Convention by the State Party.

8. Cabinet has taken note that the 16th Meeting of the Task Force on Immunization (TFI) would be held in Mauritius from 3 to 5 December 2008. The Task Force was created by the WHO in 1993 to, inter alia,:-
(a) undertake analysis of regional strategies of the Expanded Programme on Immunization;
(b) review progress and identify needs of national immunization programmes; and
(c) promote exchange of information on issues pertaining to the Programme.
The Meeting will be preceded by the Working Group on Pre-Polio and Post-Polio Eradication Issues and by the TFI/African Regional Inter-Agency Coordination Briefing Meeting. About 170 participants from Africa would attend the Meeting.

9. Cabinet has taken note that the Minister of Environment and National Development Unit would promulgate regulations under the Environment Protection Act providing for -
(a) the establishment of procedures at national level for approval of projects under the Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) of the Kyoto Protocol;
(b) the setting up of the Designated National Authority and a National CDM Committee and their respective functions; and
(c) the promulgation of the National Sustainable Development Criteria that the Designated National Authority will use when assessing projects.

Cabinet has further taken note that the Ministry of Environment and National Development Unit is working out a National CDM Strategy, which would focus, among others, on the following areas:
(i) Sector-by-sector analysis of the carbon potential;
(ii) Role of enabling sectors such as the financial sector, the accountancy and auditing sector, the legal sector and the consultancy sector; and
(iii) Human Resource Development.

10. Cabinet has taken note of the performance of the Export Oriented Enterprises sector during the first semester of 2008 and of measures being taken to further consolidate the sector, improve competitiveness, innovate, develop new projects, diversify the market and focus on niche markets.
Cabinet has further taken note that a Rs500m Manufacturing Adjustment and SME Development Fund has been set up to strengthen enterprises and develop exports.

11. Cabinet has taken note that the Mauritius Post Ltd (MPL) would organise a series of activities to mark the World Post Day celebrated on 9 October 2008, viz -
(a) free entrance for Mauritians at the Postal Museum from 9 to 15 October 2008;
(b) walk-through visit at the Office of Exchange, Central Mail Office where new technology and security camera have been installed;
(c) open days at a few regional branches to raise public awareness on the role of services offered by MPL;
(d) Letter/Essay Writing Competition on the theme “Write a letter to someone to explain why the world needs tolerance”;
(e) ICT awareness campaign at different Post Offices in collaboration with the National Computer Board; and
(f) Planting of trees and cleaning activities around Post Offices in the context of “Greener Postal Sector” Programme.