The advancement of the community, be it in Mauritius or Rodrigues, remains a key priority for the government, said the Minister Mentor, Minister of Defence and Rodrigues, Sir Anerood Jugnauth, on Thursday 12 October 2017 at Grande Montagne in Rodrigues.
In his address on the occasion of celebrations marking the 15th anniversary of the autonomy of Rodrigues, Sir Anerood Jugnauth expressed his satisfaction at the close collaboration between the Central government and the Rodrigues Regional Assembly for the development of Rodrigues. He appreciated the deep commitment of Mr Serge Clair, who for a period of 11 years during his tenure of office as Chief Commissioner, has taken the necessary actions bring Rodrigues to a new height of development.
The Minister Mentor gave an overview of the successive events which culminated on 12 October 2002 with the autonomy of Rodrigues. “It was a historical moment which is the result of the engagement and determination of the people of Rodrigues. We must acknowledge the leading role played by Mr Clair”, he said.
According to Sir Anerood Jugnauth tangible progress has been noted in several sectors in Rodrigues, amongst others: infrastructure, water distribution, health, education, and environment. There is need to create more job opportunities for the young Rodriguans , given that 38 percent of the population in the island is less than 21 years old, he outlined. The Minister Mentor recalled that the 2017-2018 budget has made provision for several measures to give a boost to the SME and the tourism sectors.
He was upbeat that with the installation of optical fibre, which is scheduled to be completed by 2019, in Rodrigues communication and connectivity with Mauritius and the outer world will considerably improve. In the meantime arrangements are being made to broaden the satellite bandwidth from 200 megabytes to 500 megabytes.
Sir Anerood Jugnauth listed out future development projects to be implemented in Rodrigues. These comprise the extension of the runway at Plaine Corail, expansion of the terminal building and duty-free shop, construction of a new quay, renovation of police stations and construction of new ones.
Furthermore the ‘Budget Grant’ to the Regional Assembly which was Rs 1,7 billion for in 2013 has jumped to Rs 3,4 billion for the financial year 2017-2018, recalled the Minister Mentor, Minister of Defence and Rodrigues.