The first plane has landed on part of the new concrete runway being built on Platte Island. On Friday 26th May, 2017, IDC’s Y12-009, carrying members of the National Assembly’s Select Committee on Islands, arrived on Platte from Coetivy as part of the committee’s fact finding mission on different islands. To date, concrete laying work has been completed on almost half of the 1020m runway - before that Platte Island had a grass runway, but with the construction of Platte Hotel, this had to be upgraded. Concrete laying work on the runway is being done by IDC and is expected to be complete by the 15th August. The construction of the 50-60 room hotel on Platte Island is expected to start at the beginning of next year.
Glenny Savy was interviewed by Raj Meetarbhan (Editor-in-Chief of Today in Seychelles), an interview which is now available to read on our website...
A bus shelter at Ile Perseverance, donated by the Lions Club of Seychelles and sponsored by the Green Island Construction Company (GICC), has been officially inaugurated. Present at the ceremony were the Minister for Habitat, Infrastructure and Land Transport, Charles Bastienne, the International President of Lions Clubs, Chancellor Lion Robert Corlew, first lady of Lions International, Lion Dianne Corlew, Lions members and other distinguished guests. Chancellor Corlew, who along with Minister Bastienne and Mrs Corlew, inaugurated the facility, explained that the bus shelter will serve the community of Ile Perseverance by providing them with a much comfortable place to wait for the bus, and said: “We do our very best around the world to serve the communities, especially the people of Seychelles. We have so many wonderful programmes that will inspire people, and make their lives easier.” Minister Bastienne thanked Lions Club for their generosity, stating: “Today is a memorable event; Lions Club of Seychelles has marked the lives of so many people in Seychelles. We can depend on them to serve the community.” Lions Club Seychelles has spent over R1.5 million in building several bus shelters around Mahé, including Beau Vallon, Curio Road, Plaisance, Victoria and Ile Perseverance, and has many ongoing projects such as drug and alcohol rehabilitation projects and a nationwide rotavirus vaccination campaign.
IDC employee Elvis Stravens was among 10 young males and 13 men to receive the Men’s Award 2016, an award honours male employees with exemplary behaviour and qualities. This was the 3rd such ceremony organised by the National Family Council of Seychelles. All the 10 winners in the young male category, as well as all the 13 men, were rewarded with a shield and certificate. Mr. Elvis Stravens was nominated as IDC’s candidate for the award after he braved cyclone Fantala, which struck the island of Farquhar in April 2016; he led the team that remained on the island for the initial clean up exercise which followed in order to allow the plane to land on the island. Fantala struck the island of Farquhar three times, destroying buildings and vegetation. Mr. Stravens joined IDC in July 1991 as an accounts clerk; the exposure which defined his career with IDC came in 1994 when he was posted to Silhouette to replace the accounts officer there. While on Silhouette he fulfilled the duties of assistant island manager and that of manager, and Mr. Stravens was eventually sent to Alphonse as a relief manager for a period of two weeks, but ended up spending two months there. Today Mr. Stravens is the Islands Operation Manager, responsible for five islands, namely Alphonse, Astove, Desrochess, Farquhar and Platte. Whilst thanking IDC staff for nominating him for the award, Mr. Stravens said: “It has always been a pleasure working and sharing my knowledge with you. I have worn many hats throughout my career and have never asked for anything more. My only wish is to see IDC stand tall against all odds. Loyalty, honesty, compassion, humility, discipline and friendliness are the values that I share with you.” The Men’s Award presentation ceremony was held on the 26th November 2016, where David Boniface, from Plaisance Secondary School, won the Outstanding Young Male Role Model Award, and the Outstanding Male Role Model Award was won by Jude Raoul, a captain and deputy commander at the Seychelles Defence Academy (SDA).
After repairs and renovations she was renamed Isle of Farquhar and began her new life taking workers and supplies to the outlying islands and returning laden with island produce such as maize, copra, livestock and salted fish. She was carried guano from St Pierre to Mauritius and in addition to Seychelles, served Agalega and the Chagos Archipelago. She later became a landmark at her final anchorage at Les Mamelles, Mahé.
The cyclone caused US$4.5 million in damages and losses. This is equivalent to 0.3% of Seychelles GDP. “The Government of Seychelles will lose around US$500,000 in revenue which it collects as value added tax and business tax from Farquhar during the island’s gradual recovery,” said Mr. Wielinga. The preliminary findings show that the Indian Ocean island’s recovery needs stand at around US$8 million, he added.
Cyclone Fantala began life as a tropical disturbance with central pressure of 1003 hPa around 12.7° South, 62.7° East on 11 April 2016. The Seychelles National Meteorological Services (SNMS) issued its first advisory bulletin after receiving the information from the Regional Tropical Cyclone Warning Centre, Météo-France La Reunion (RSMC La Reunion). The tropical disturbance then deepened rapidly as a tropical cyclone as it moved towards the outer islands of Seychelles, developing further into an intense tropical cyclone before hitting Farquhar. At that time the estimated central pressure had decreased to 910 hPa and the wind speed reached between 300 to 350 km per hour. Every building except the cyclone shelter was destroyed or severely damaged. Fantala then moved northwest of Farquhar, but made a u-turn and the atoll a second time on Tuesday 19 April, albeit at a lower wind speed estimated at 140 to 160 km per hour.
Writing in UK’s Daily Mail on 29 January 2015, Anne Pursglove says “If you believe the hype, almost every product in your bathroom cabinet could be replaced with the stuff!” IDC has recently ventured into the market with its own range of coconut oil bottles, now available on sale to the public.