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Home >> World
UPDATED: 08:36, August 02, 2006
Newly elected Seychellois president inaugurated
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Newly elected Seychellois President James Michel was inaugurated on Tuesday evening at the State House.

Addressing the nation ahead of former president France Albert Rene, his rivals in the elections, diplomats and other representatives, Michel said he would preserve on the road that leads the country to "unity, peace, fraternity and opportunity for all."

Michel said the five-year mandate was an opportunity to build on the work that his government had started two yeas ago.

Michel came into power in April 2004 when Rene resigned after having ruled the Indian Ocean archipelago country for 27 years.

In the three-day election held from July 28 to 30, Michel secured his position by scooping 53.73 percent of the total 56,079 votes while opposition leader of Seychelles National Party Wavel Ramkalawan lost narrowly with 45.71 percent.

Michel said his government would work to facilitate a strong, productive and dynamic economy and at the same time safeguard the social gains.

He noted that Seychelles would play a positive role in regional and international affairs and would promote interests of other small island countries as well as interests of the African continent.

The 62-year-old, described as "a man of great virtues", came from a background of teacher. He rose to political importance through involvement in tourism industry and engagement in Rene's political party since 1974.

Michel had served as vice president at the Rene administration since 1996. He also participated in the country's democratization process that started with multiparty elections in 1993.

After coming into power, the Seychellois government under Michel has encouraged foreign investment in order to upgrade hotels and other services. At the same time, the government has made concerted efforts to widen its economic base by promoting the development of farming, fishing and small-scale manufacturing.

Also inaugurated in the ceremony was Michel's campaign mate, Joseph Belmont, who became vice president of the small country of 82,000.

Source: Xinhua

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