CABINET DECISIONS – 4 NOVEMBER 2010
1. Cabinet has taken note of the outcome of the official mission of Dr the Hon Navinchandra Ramgoolam, GCSK, FRCP, Prime Minister, to Switzerland, where he participated in the XIII Francophone Summit held in Montreux on 23 and 24 October 2010. The main theme of the Summit, which coincided with the 40th Anniversary of the creation of the Francophone Institution, was: Défis et Visions d’avenir pour la Francophonie and the following three major issues were discussed -
(a) La Francophonie acteur des relations internationales et sa place dans la gouvernance mondiale;
(b) La Francophonie et le développement durable : les solidarités
francophones face aux grands défis; and
(c) La langue française et l’éducation dans un monde globalisé: les défis de la diversité et de l’innovation.
Mauritius was elected as one of the Vice-Presidents of the Office of the Conference. In his address to the Summit on the themes, the Prime Minister -
(a) underlined that peace and security are essential to achieve world governance and called upon the Organisation Internationale de la Francophonie to assist countries in the fight against the scourge of piracy and find a solution to the political problems in Somalia;
(b) reiterated Government's commitment to put up the appropriate legal framework to prosecute pirates arrested in the Indian Ocean region;
(c) appealed to the Francophone Community on the need to find a constitutional solution to the current political crisis in Madagascar;
(d) informed the Summit of the various initiatives taken by Mauritius under the Maurice Ile Durable project to ensure a reduction in the quantum of fossil fuels consumed and to develop alternative sources of energy to further enhance our country’s sustainable development. He also proposed that green accounting should be an integral part of the national accounts of countries and reflect in the annual balance sheets of companies; and
(e) informed the Summit of the use of innovative technologies in the education sector, namely the implementation of the “Sankoré” project, mainly as a catalyst to promote development and as a vector to fight poverty.
The Summit adopted a resolution presented jointly by Mauritius, the Seychelles and Djibouti to request for a strong international cooperation in the fight against piracy.
The Summit approved the Draft Montreux Declaration, as well as Resolutions, amongst others, on -
(a) Crisis situation and solutions, consolidation of peace in the Francophone countries;
(b) Reinforcement of the cooperation amongst States in the fight against fake medicines and falsified medical products; and
(c) Reinforcement of international cooperation in the fight against transnational criminality, terrorism and piracy.
2. Cabinet has taken note that the National Flag flying on some public and private buildings and flown at official functions is not in accordance with the official colour codes. The National Flag is the symbol of the Government and the people of Mauritius. Its Colour Codes, which are as follows, should be strictly respected:-
Red - 0.005
Blue - 7.086
Yellow - 0.001
Green - 0.010
In view of the frequent exhibition of flags which are not in conformity with the specified codes, Cabinet has agreed to appropriate legislation being made to regulate the use and sale of the National Flag and to make an offence the display of flags with the inappropriate colour codes.
3. Cabinet has taken note that the Minister of Social Security, National Solidarity and Reform Institutions proposes to amend the Ilois Welfare Fund Act to replace the word “Ilois”, wherever it appears, by the word “Chagossian” so as to better reflect the place of origin of the Chagossian Community and to give the Community due recognition in the Mauritian society.
4. Cabinet has taken note that, in line with Government Programme 2010-2015, the Ministry of Agro-Industry and Food Security launched the Agricultural Production and Marketing Information System on 25 October 2010. The System aims at providing regular, updated and intelligent information on crop production, marketing and support to the agri-business sector in decision making process. AREU has mounted training courses for planters and other stakeholders to ensure optimal use of the System and it is expected that, by the end of 2011, some 2,000 persons would be competent to use the System.
5. Cabinet has taken note of action initiated by the Ministry of Public Infrastructure, National Development Unit, Land Transport and Shipping in respect of the landslide at Bambous Virieux and Quatre Soeurs. The Crisis Committee set up to monitor the situation, together with Dr Emilio Saldivar, Consultant in Geotechnical Engineering, has effected site visits and suggested interim measures to arrest prevailing soil conditions, pending an in-depth study of the site.
Cabinet has further taken note of the status of the Report of the Japan International Cooperation Agency on the management and maintenance of the Chitrakoot and other landslide-prone areas.
6. Cabinet has taken note that, in line with Government's vision to set up a green country, the Ministry of Environment and Sustainable Development would implement the Eco-Village Project, in a first phase, at Pointe aux Piments, Panchavati, Vieux Grand Port, Vuillemin, La Gaulette/Le Morne, Poudre d’Or, Clémencia, Souillac and Rivière Coco in Rodrigues. The project aims at sustaining the tourism industry, creating green jobs, improving quality of life whilst preserving natural resources, and facilitating community self-reliance. The project comprises the upgrading of the physical environment, promotion of waste segregation, and use of renewable energy for lighting and heating purposes, and protection and conservation of biodiversity.
7. Cabinet has taken note of the status in the preparation of a Consolidated Children Bill in line with Government Programme 2010-2015 to, inter alia, strengthen and develop structures to better provide care and protect children from maltreatment, abuse, neglect, degradation, discrimination, exploitation and any other physical and moral harm or hazards.
8. Cabinet has taken note of the mechanism on the concept "Working Together" put in place by the Ministry of Gender Equality, Child Development and Family Welfare to ensure the effective protection and welfare of children, victims of violence, abuse and neglect.
9. Cabinet has taken note that a Ministerial Consultative Committee on social integration under the Chairmanship of the Vice-Prime Minister, Minister of Social Integration and Economic Empowerment, would be set up to ensure coordination and harmonisation in the implementation of projects and measures targeting the improvement of living conditions of the poor and the needy, particularly, low cost social housing, enhanced educational facilities for children and youngsters in deprived areas, social integration of persons with disabilities, and widening of the circle of opportunities for the unemployed.
10. Cabinet has taken note that, in line with the vision of Government to transform Mauritius into a Regional Centre of Excellence in Higher Education, the Ministry of Tertiary Education, Science, Research and Technology would issue guidelines to post-secondary educational institutions for the development of a Student Charter to provide information on the interaction between the staff and the students, to enhance and support the teaching, learning and research experience at the Institution and at the same time to maintain an enjoyable and conducive environment to work, study and carry out research.
11. Cabinet has taken note that Dr Jacques Diouf, Director General of the Food and Agriculture Organisation, would make an official visit to Mauritius from 20 to 23 November 2010. During his visit, Dr Diouf would pay courtesy calls on the Prime Minister, the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Regional Integration and International Trade and other important personalities and have working sessions with the Minister of Agro-Industry and Food Security on technical assistance, inter alia, for the strengthening of the certification of food products to enhance export opportunities, the review of the organizational structure of the Agricultural Services and the Veterinary Services of the Ministry of Agro-Industry and Food Security.
12. Cabinet has taken note that the Award Ceremony for the Public Service Excellence Award 2009 would be held in the third week of November 2010. The theme for the Award 2009 is Sustainable Development through Organizational Excellence, in line with the Maurice Ile Durable concept and to sensitize Ministries and Departments of the need to develop policies and operational set-ups giving due consideration to environmental issues. The Public Service Excellence Award was launched in 2005 following an announcement made by Dr the Honourable Navinchandra Ramgoolam, GCSK, FRCP, Prime Minister, to encourage innovation and excellence in the delivery of public services.
13. Cabinet has taken note of the outcome of the recent mission of the Minister of Local Government and Outer Islands to the Seychelles in the context of the Festival Creole. In the margins of the visit, the Minister had talks with the Seychelles authorities on assistance being extended by the Ministry of Local Government and Outer Islands for the introduction of local governance there.
14. Cabinet has taken note of the outcome of the recent mission of the Attorney General to London, where he participated in the Meeting of Law Ministers and Attorneys General of Small Commonwealth Jurisdictions. The Meeting discussed a range of legal issues of special interest to small Commonwealth jurisdictions, as well as competing criminal jurisdiction, juvenile justice, alternative sentencing and overcrowding in correctional institutions, public confidence in the criminal justice system, cooperation in criminal justice matters and disaster laws in an era of climate change.
In the margins of the Meeting, the Attorney General met HE Mr Kamalesh Sharma, Commonwealth Secretary General, Mr Dominic Grieve, Attorney General for England and Wales and the Baroness Prashar of Runnymede.
15. Cabinet has taken note that Prof Joseph Lucien Finette, GOSK, has been appointed Director of the Mauritius Examinations Syndicate.