Government bodies in Seychelles to increase transparency with more news conferences
The principles under which the government will work in 2018 were outlined in the first briefing. (Jude Morel)
(Seychelles News Agency) - With the aim of governing with transparency and accountability, the office of the President of Seychelles for the first time has introduced a cabinet press briefing to be held every two weeks, an official said Thursday.
More information will be made available to the public during the briefings, which will be held a day after the cabinet meeting that takes place every fortnight on Wednesdays.
During the first briefing, the Secretary of State for Cabinet Affairs, Mohammed Afif, outlined the principles under which the government will work in 2018.
“We have to remain a government that is transparent and accountable to the people of Seychelles. The executive government has to come closer to the people of Seychelles, we have to listen more, communicate better to them and deliver as a government on what we say we are going to do,” said Afif.
The Deputy Cabinet Secretary for Policy Affairs, Margaret Pillay, said that though “the priority of each ministry remains their individual mandate, it has been outlined during yesterday's cabinet meeting that we need to act on the decisions that have been taken.”
Talking about the importance of communication, she said, “a lot of decisions have been taken within the government but the public does not necessarily know where they need to go to get certain information or solution.”
In the first cabinet meeting, Afif said that the President Danny Faure outlined housing, education, health and fisheries as the sectors needing more focus.
“In the meetings to come, we will give you more details because this is when we will have all the plans of the ministers,” said Afif.
The Secretary of State also announced that apart from the cabinet meetings, the president will be chairing cabinet committees every Monday afternoon. Ministers, along with their advisors, principal secretaries and technicians, will come together under the chairmanship of the president to address cross-sectoral issues.
“This will help with planning, setting the direction and agenda for legislation for the year and also to make things more efficient as there will be more consultations,” said Afif.
It was also announced that each minister, will as of this year, start giving press conferences, similar to that of President Faure. In 2017, Faure gave four live press conferences.
Pillay said that “each minister will give a minimum of three press conferences in a year.”
Once the ministries have sent their respective calendar to the office of cabinet affairs, the media will be informed on which dates the conferences will be held.