Three political parties in Seychelles have given mixed reactions to President Danny Faure's call for the formation of a government of national unity in the upcoming elections.
In a national address on June 18 on the occasion of Seychelles' Constitution Day, Faure said that faced with a national emergency brought by the COVID-19 pandemic, "I will put in front of the Seychellois people the urgency of the next government being a government of national unity."
The leader of Linyon Demokratik Seselwa, Roger Mancienne, said on Monday that in its first statement on the COVID emergency, LDS called for an inclusive high-level body to forge a unified national response to the challenges. This was backed by members in the National Assembly.
"These efforts embody the spirit of national unity but unfortunately were ignored by President Danny Faure," said Mancienne.
On the proposed formation of a government of national unity, he said: "It is a proposal he is fully entitled to make, but this should be done in a forum within his electoral campaign, not in an address as head of state on Constitution Day."
Mancienne added that the present system of government in Seychelles provides the means to achieve national unity in dealing with a crisis while preserving the checks and balances that are essential to democratic government.
On his side, the leader of Lalyans Seselwa, Patrick Pillay, said that President Faure cannot unite the country and the only way to get Seychelles out of troubled waters is through voting out the Faure administration in the forthcoming election.
"Under his mandate, Seychelles has been at its most divided. Cronyism has been rampant, he has been unable to stamp out corruption and the cost of living has skyrocketed. We do not need a government of national unity. We need a government that can unify the country, one which is transparent, accountable and this is what Lalyans Seselwa is offering the public during the forthcoming election," he said.
The newest registered political party, One Seychelles, said that such an arrangement has been part and parcel of its visions.
Party leader Alain St. Ange bemoaned the fact that it is only now that Faure has realised that the country needs all hands on deck to ride out the storm.
"Since the beginning of COVID-19, we have been asking for this. We kept offering our services to help see Seychelles through these hard times, but all our appeals fell on deaf ears. It is only when the situation is really drastic, that President Faure realises that Seychelles needs all her children and that no one has monopoly on good ideas and solutions," he added.
St. Ange said that for the sake of the wellbeing of the Seychellois and for Seychelles, his party is ready to consider the appeal made by the head of state of the island nation in the western Indian Ocean.
"However, he needs to be very clear about how this will be done and in defining this too he will need to give proof of his intentions by talking with all the partners and not just springing things upon us as he has done with this announcement," said St. Ange.