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President Faure attends ceremonial sitting to farewell Chief Justice of the Supreme Court

01 October 2020 | Legal Affairs

The President of the Republic, Mr Danny Faure, attended a ceremonial sitting to farewell and honour the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of the Republic of Seychelles, Mrs Mathilda Twomey (née Butler Payette), at the Supreme Court, Palais de Justice yesterday afternoon.

During the ceremony presided by Judge Mohan Burhan, there were statements made by senior council, members of the Bar Association of Seychelles, members of the bench and other Justices.

Speaking at the ceremonial sitting, the outgoing Chief Justice said, “Today I want to speak to the everyday people living in our country. The courts exist for you. We in this room are parts of the mechanisms of state that were designed to serve you. The government and its branches were built for the societal benefit and every ounce of power that we have is drawn from this document called the Constitution which belongs to ‘We the People’.”

She discussed highlights of her tenure and her agenda of change, including standardising procedures, improving record and case management and recruiting new magistrates, judges and vital support staff. Noting the progress that has been made, she also looked ahead to remark on all that still needs to be done.

She raised five calls to action: constitutionalism, ensuring the constitution permeates all levels of society, accountability, ensuring people are held accountable for their actions, dismantling patriarchy and the need for greater gender representation in the judiciary, vigilance in consuming and producing information, and courage to do the right thing.

The Chief Justice Twomey thanked her team, the judicial officers, the dedicated registry staff, management team and other support staff for their hard work and support over the last five years.

The outgoing Chief Justice was appointed on 7 August 2015. She was the third Seychellois Chief Justice and the first woman to take up this post. During her tenure in office, Chief Justice Twomey contributed immensely to the judicial system and helped greatly in advocating for the rights of women in society.

The Ceremonial sitting was also attended by the Vice-President Vincent Meriton, Speaker of the National Assembly of Seychelles, Mr Nicholas Prea, President of the Seychelles Court of Appeal, Justice Anthony Fernando, Secretary of State Cabinet Affairs, Mr Mohammed Afif, Former President of the Seychelles Court of Appeal, Justice Francis MacGregor, Former Judge of the Supreme Court and Chairman of the Human Rights Commission, Justice Bernadin Renaud, Chief Executive Officer  of the Anti-Corruption Commission, Ms May De Silva, the High Commissioner of India to Seychelles, His Excellency General Dalbir Singh Suhag (Retd), the Ombudsman, Mrs Nichole Tirant-Ghérardi, member of the Constitutional Appointments Authority, and members of the Diplomatic Corps.

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