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Welcome to Edition #34 of Volume #3 of 2019 Sunday 1st December 2019

December 3, 2019 Destination Africa / Seychelles No Comments Email Email

The Editorial this week highlights:- a. A win in case against Government of Seychelles regarding sudden UNWTO endorsement withdrawal after lengthy legal battle. b. Visibility on Linkedln reaches 18140 contacts  c. World Travel Awards Grand Finale in Muscat 28 November 2019 – a Mauritian wins big. d. Seychelles closes its 2nd Edition of the International Fashion Week & another celebration showcasing the Wonders of the Ocean through its Ocean Festival. e. This week is Routes Africa in Kenya – It is now confirmed that I shall be at this coming Routes event in Africa.  Stand alone articles this week:- 1. Environment Seychelles – Denis Island is making a significant contribution to conservation in Seychelles. 2. HELEN PILLAY IS HOD FOR GROUPS, INCENTIVES & CRUISE SHIPS AT CREOLE. 3. Reunion – Seychelles working on further cooperation. 4. Seychelles to welcome second leg of the MCB Tour Championship Indian Ocean Swing. 5. SEYCHELLES SKIES WELCOMES TEL AVIV INAUGURAL NON-STOP FLIGHT. 6. Réunion is doing well economically . 7. Mauritius has a rich salt-making tradition. 8. Africa get seat on UNESCO World Heritage Committee as Ethiopia is elected. 9. Seychellois Artists Georges Camille & Patrick Victor ‘flying the flag’ to new heights.  10. Closing Notes.

Alain St.Ange

Welcome to this 34th edition of Vol 3 of the Saint Ange Tourism Report of 2019.
A win in case against Government of Seychelles regarding sudden UNWTO endorsement withdrawal after lengthy legal battle

The UNWTO Candidates for the then election for the post of Secretary General

After a two year legal battle we received a win in case against Government of Seychelles regarding sudden UNWTO endorsement withdrawal after lengthy legal battle.
The court case was filed against the Government two years ago, following the abrupt revocation of my candidacy for the post of Secretary-General of the UNWTO by President Danny Faure just 36 hours prior to the elections and this after having campaigned tirelessly for the post, incurring huge financial losses in the process and widely tipped to win the election.
The decision to withdraw the Seychelles candidature was taken by the Government of Seychelles following pointed reminders by the African Union of their obligation to support the Zimbabwean candidate. The reminders comprised threats of possible economic sanctions against Seychelles if it did not revoke my nomination. The revocation was done despite the threats of sanction being known by the Government prior to and at the time of endorsement of my candidature, and even  despite them being described as risks worth taking.
The Court ruled in my favour, after a six-month wait for the judgment.
The Government raised many defences and excuses as to why they should not be held liable to an ordinary citizen, including act of state and national interest.
Despite acknowledging my campaign efforts as rigorous and tireless, and that the Government had committed a fault in law and were liable to repair the same, the Court rejected most of my claims for compensation for moral and material damage under the various heads. I was awarded a small sum, which just about covered the costs of filing the case to begin with, and denied costs.
Upon advice of his legal team, I shall be appealing the Judgment on quantum, given that the sum awarded is a poor reflection of the monetary expenses incurred during my campaign, and the moral damage  endured following the sudden revocation of my candidature at the last possible moment.
The book set to be released on the bid by Seychelles to win the position of Secretary General of the UNWTO
The proposed book to cover the UNWTO elections and the long international campaign as well as the trial and final submissions tabled by both sides will now be delayed as we shall wait for the Seychelles Court of Appeal to hear the case before proceeding to print.

Following the court case Lewis Betsy with Seychelles Life in London did an interview about this UNWTO saga and we reproduce the extract about the court case below:-

Seychelles Life:- Congratulations on your victory in the legal action against the Seychelles government. Did you ever think your victory and vindication would be in doubt?
Thank you for your words congratulating me on this legal win. The let-down by the Seychelles Government remains hard to digest. A Government must stand by its word and commitment. They moved from standing by one of their own to support a Robert Mugabe candidate and in so doing tell the world that Zimbabwe is the tourism benchmark admired by Seychelles, even above its own successes. Today, the legal system has vindicated the people’s expectations on the word of a Head of State once he commits himself. This matter was discussed and supported by two back-to-back Seychelles Presidents and the withdrawal of the Government’s support for the nomination by President Faure has cast serious doubt on what the word of a President means. Yes, through my legal victory, I feel vindicated.

Seychelles Life:- It must have been a bitter-sweet experience over your old colleagues. Have you spoken to President Faure or any of his administration since the Seychelles Supreme Court ruling was made?
The legal avenue is used to redress unfairness and to re-establish the rule of law. Seychelles did not need this let-down from the Head of State. An independent and sovereign nation must have the courage to stand by its citizens and ensure the country’s flag is raised at its highest level at all times. I have had no contact whatsoever with President Faure since the case. My last discussion was before filing the court case some two years ago.

Seychelles Life:- Has there been an official apology?
No, the Government has not apologised for hurting one of its citizens so much and for destroying the life of its citizens. I am a patriot and pray every Seychellois, including the President of our islands, also embrace patriotism and put the Seychellois people first always. Today, Seychelles is seeing a Truth Commission where the hurting of the citizens is heard. One day, the harm caused by President Faure in the UNWTO saga will have to be heard as well.

Seychelles Life:- With hindsight was there anything Seychelles could have done to resist the pressure put on it by the African Union (AU), which was pushing for a candidate from Zimbabwe, Walter Mzembi, who ultimately lost anyway? Was it typical of African politics or a one-off?
Yes, of course Seychelles had the option to stay the course and the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs said so under oath in court during the trial. Even the Ambassador who was dealing with the African Union gave this as an option in his notes to the Government. Seychelles would not have been the first, nor the last, to break ranks in their support of their own country and its citizens. It has happened before and it will happen again. Seychelles is a sovereign nation and must first look to itself. The big question is, when was a sanction imposed that crippled any AU member state? The AU needs its member states to remain a viable organisation. For such an important decision the AU never saw fit to even send a high-powered envoy to Seychelles to discuss with the authorities and President Faure only took an electronically submitted Note Verbale as enough justification to destroy the career of one of its citizens. The AU had the Zimbabwe Minister as its candidate when Robert Mugabe was president. He was being patriotic and showing a patriotism lesson to Africa even though it was clear that the AU candidate could not win, not because of their chosen minister but because of the sanctions by different countries on Zimbabwe. I knew that out of ten votes from Africa we were set to pull six. I pray that this UNWTO saga was a one-off and African politics can move to stop Africa from shooting itself in the foot again.

Seychelles Life:- You state what pain and humiliation the situation has caused you, but will the compensation be of any help? Are you still to appeal against the R164,396 ($12,000) awarded and have you at this stage any idea how you will spend it?
The compensation is a token compensation that just covers the court fees and lawyer’s fees. Yes, we shall appeal the case. The sad thing is that this pitiful saga now drags on and closure on this will take much longer. We shall not get the compensation until the appeal case is heard and judgment given.

Visibility on Linkedln reaches 18140 contacts

Tourism is visibility and working through friendships developed over time through work, through industry forums and at tourism trade fairs. Maintaining that visibility is a sure way to remain relevant.

Reading messages on my LinkedIn page this week I noted with surprise that I was now connected to over eighteen thousand industry players and Seychellois through LinkedIn. This ensures that my messages and the Saint Ange Tourism Report reached a greater number of people than I ever imagined. The daily feedback on LinkedIn is also rather interesting and questions raised or just the simple words of encouragement shows how far and wide the Tourism Report goes.

Thank you to all the contacts for remaining close and active.

World Travel Awards Grand Finale in Muscat 28 November 2019 – a Mauritian wins big

Donald Payen receiving his Award from Graham Cook of World Awards

Congratulations to Donald Payen of Air Mauritius for pulling the International Award for “Outstanding Contribution to the Aviation Industry”. The World of Tourism and of aviation all know the passion with which Donald Payen has been showing in his work at Air Mauritius. He remains a man with a heart for the region and its Vanilla Islands.

Seychelles closes its 2nd Edition of the International Fashion Week & another celebration showcasing the Wonders of the Ocean through its Ocean Festival

Congratulations to Terry Carola and his Team for another successful International Fashion Week. Feedback has been positive with Fashion Designers coming from many countries working side by side with Seychellois Fashion professionals.
A series of activities was also organised to commemorate this year’s Seychelles Ocean Festival (SOF) by the Seychelles Tourism Board (STB) and its various partners.

The event, which promotes marine-based tourism in the island archipelago was held from Friday November 22, 2019 to Sunday November 24, 2019 and was celebrated through a plethora of education and fun activities throughout the weekend.

In line with the STB marketing strategy, which includes promoting Seychelles as one of pioneers of conservation in the region, the SOF is a prime event for the destination as it provides a platform STB to sensitize the local population about the role and importance of the marine world for Seychelles as a destination.

This week is Routes Africa in Kenya

Routes Africa, the intra-Africa route development forum, will this year be hosted by the Kenya Airports Authority.

Routes Africa, which returned to the aviation event calendar last year with a successful event in Ghana, will take place this year in Mombasa in Kenya as part of a long-term commitment by Routes to help develop new routes to, from and within the continent.

To be held this coming week at the PrideInn Paradise, Shanzu Beach in Mombasa, Kenya, the event will be the 13th Routes Africa. As the region’s most long standing aviation forum, the event has been bringing airlines, airports and tourism authorities together to discuss air services to, from and within Africa for over a decade.

2019’s edition of Routes Africa will see 250 delegates come together to experience the Routes African conference program and to take part in around 600 face-to-face meetings over the course of two business days. The Routes Africa conference program brings together airline CEOs and C-Suite speakers who will take to the stage to discuss the future of aviation within Africa and the most pressing issues facing the industry, while ASM Global, the world’s first provider of route development courses, will deliver their Route Development Accreditation course. This course, developed exclusively for Routes Africa, will provide attendees with tools and techniques to help them attract new routes and increase existing services, and all delegates attending will benefit from a certification of attendance.

Routes Africa 2019 will be hosted by Kenya Airports Authority (KAA), a State Corporation that is charged with the responsibility of providing and managing a coordinated system of airports in Kenya. Established in 1991 through an Act of Parliament, KAA facilitates infrastructure for aviation services between Kenya and the outside world, currently running 5 international airports, 5 domestic airports and 9 airstrips.

The event will be supported by other Kenyan organisations, including the Kenya Tourism Board, the Kenya Civil Aviation Authority and Kenya Wildlife Services.

Jonny Andersen Managing Director/CEO, Kenya Airports Authority said “Kenya is a regional aviation powerhouse in the region. Our geographical location gives us an advantage in connections to most international hub cities in the world. Kenya’s centralized proximity to Europe, Asia, Middle East, Americas and the rest of Africa makes this a profitable aviation route. Our status as a trade and tourist regional hub also makes Kenya an attractive destination.

“Routes conferences provide an excellent platform for the aviation industry to meet and make business decisions, will allow us to showcase Kenya’s available facilities and attractions. We are proud to host Routes Africa and look forward to welcoming delegates to magical Kenya”.

Known for its landscapes, wildlife and cultures, Kenya attracts visitors from all over the world to experience its sweepings savannahs, tropical reefs, dense forests and snow-capped mountains, while the fertile lands export coffee, cotton, cashew nuts, and more to all around the globe.

Mombasa, Kenya’s oldest and second-largest city, is found on the coast of the Indian Ocean and benefits from acres of protected land and sea, with white sand beaches and a tropical climate. Visitors to the region can take an early morning game drive and spot rare wildlife in the Shimba Hills National Reserve while breath-taking underwater views await snorkelers, divers or glass-bottom boat passengers in the Mombasa Marine National Park.

As a developing nation, Kenya has experienced many challenges to overcome, but with its abundant natural resources, and a diverse but cohesive population, Kenya’s vision for the future is to emerge as a leader among African nations.

Steven Small, brand director for Routes, said: “We’re so excited to be returning to Africa in this beautiful city. We are sure that hosting Routes Africa 2019 will help the Kenya Airports Authority in achieving their goals, and we have no doubt that our delegates will enjoy this unique location and have a memorable time in Mombasa.

Alain St.Ange

It is now confirmed that I shall be at this coming Routes event in Africa. I have been invited to chair an aviation ministerial meeting on tourism at the event. In this conference we will be looking on how can we make the air transport market in Africa work better exploring the need of the ministries to work in harmony to form a cohesive picture to promote a destination. At the conference we shall have the opportunity to discuss the Single African Air Transport Market Agreement and ensure that connectivity from Africa to the world and also intra-Africa to help support its social, economic and political integration. As well as, focus on the infrastructure implementations needed to meet the SAATM and the opportunities that the Continental Free Trade Agreement could bring to the intra-Africa trade and tourism.

It is important to again acknowledge all who are diligently re-posting the Saint Ange Tourism Report weekly. Our Report ranges far and wide, from Australia to the Americas, from the Indian Ocean Vanilla islands to Africa & Asian and Greater Europe, with your continued support, which is greatly appreciated. You are helping us to grow from strength to strength with each new Edition.

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