Saturday, November 29, 2014

Manifestos For Two Major Blocks Now Available

L'Alliance Lepep released its manifesto eight days ago while Labour/MMM did so today. Or 58 days after the people at Lalit made their electoral program available. And that has made the recommendation of Abraham Brilloff handy again.

Labour/MMM announced that they will increase old age pension to Rs4,000. This confirms at least two things: one is that they don't have a serious economic plan -- why are we not surprised? -- and two they've been on the defensive for the past month and a half. Lalit has 28 candidates of which 43% are women.

It also shows us how important it is to have a competitive democracy. Which is the foundation of both our electoral setup and system of government.

So the best outcome is that no block gets more than 35 seats and some toxic candidates don't get through.

Thursday, November 27, 2014

While You Were Sleeping

Suren Dayal was nominated as Minister of Education when Vasant Bunwaree resigned. This happened of course thanks to our excellent Constitution which makes these kinds of changes take place seamlessly.

It's not the first time we're experiencing our excellent Constitution. And definitely not the last. And if our Constitution is so good it's because a number of great and selfless minds have poured over various drafts of it and have iterated to yield something that's literally timeless. For sure we started from a very good base: the British version of a Parliamentary democracy.

Which makes it very different from what one clown has proposed.

Aren't you happy you're voting soon?

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Our Polls Are Back

We have 5 great polls for you:

1. is what do you think about our Westmininsterian System of Government.

2. how many seats will Ramgoolam's alliance take?

3. who is the better Prime Minister: SAJ, PB or NR?

4. who is a better FM: VL or RS?

and 5. is about the number of MPs we already have in Parliament.

Happy voting!!!

Thursday, November 6, 2014

Gulbul Confirms Sithanen Proposal is Constitutional Galimatia

If you listen carefully to what he said on radio this week. Given that they are proposing to shift the power to dissolve Parliament to an elected President this changes the nature of our democratic system and will therefore require a referendum where a supermajority -- 75% -- of voters give the nod as well as a unanimous vote in Parliament. He has cited Privy Council interpretations of section 1 of our Constitution as basis for his analysis. He joins two colleagues who have promised to go to court if leaders start choosing MPs.

See I told you the bean-counter had no business on one committee. It also shows that collectively Mauritians are very smart. Which would explain why the bill hasn't been released yet. They know it's amateurish at best. And don't want to look silly again. After it is thrashed unceremoniously.

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Suddenly, Labour/MMM Alliance Promises 60,000 Jobs

Because a few weeks ago when Rama Sithanen was asked (scroll to 31m30s) how many jobs he would create in the first twelve months if he was to become the next finance minister -- God forbid -- he said he could not forecast that. He couldn't even give a rough estimation. Of course we can come up with a ballpark of how many jobs he might create because he's been FM for several years and we just have to look at his stats. Turns out we should expect around 7,200 jobs or 2.5X less than what Vishnu Lutchmeenaraidoo could create.

He also said that he would not be able to create jobs immediately. Hmm. We can estimate that too by looking at how many jobs were created in the first full calendar year -- we could look at monthly figures too -- he was in office in each one of his two terms. That number is around 8,300 jobs. But given that he messed up the economy so badly and that he increased unemployment every single year in his first mandate and in every full calendar year of his second that could be really hard to achieve.

Mr. Sithanen also says he will eradicate poverty. He said that before. I'm sure you remember he said he could do that in 7 years. The snag is that it's almost ten years since his bogus reforms have started. And far from eliminating poverty he has thrown an additional 22,000 Mauritians into it during his second term. That's about 350 people every four weeks. And his inflation record doesn't look too good.

So I guess they've thrown this number to look a lot less silly. And to try to be a bit less on the defensive. After lalyans lepep announced their 12 measures.

Monday, November 3, 2014

30 Years Ago Indira Gandhi Was Assasinated

On October 31st 1984 to be more precise. I remember not initially understanding how she could have been shot multiple times. Only to learn a bit later that two of her bodyguards had assassinated her with their service guns. Ms. Gandhi was a great friend of Mauritius and visited us a few times. Here she is on one of these trips being welcomed by Kher Jagatsingh as my mum, tonton Raymond and tante Jacqueline Rault look on. The guy just behind the Prime Minister of India is of course our own SSR.

This picture brings back a lot of memories. One such memory is the late Camille Moutou lamenting at a SELEX -- an organisation for the elderly in Mauritius -- dinner a few years ago: "Kot zot pu kav vo nu bann dirizan sa".

Indeed Camille.