GOVERNMENT AND PEOPLE
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Seychelles hasn’t always experienced democracy during its time as an independent republic. A coup in 1978 against President James Mancham was led by Prime Minister France-Albert René. The coup resulted in a long period of one-party rule, where the country experimented with various forms of socialism and free schooling and a national health service were introduced throughout the islands. Creole as a medium of instruction in primary and secondary schools was also introduced during this time, previously students had only been allowed to be instructed in English. Sadly, repression was also a common theme during this period in Seychelles as were multiple failed coup attempts and even an attempted invasion by mercenaries. This tumultuous period ended in the early 1990s when multiparty elections were held for the first time in decades, resulting in a win for Rene’s Parti Lepep, which held power through successive elections up to 2020. Those elections, held during the Covid pandemic, resulted in a win by current president Wavel Ramkalawan’s Linyon Demokratik Seselwa (LDS) party, which now controls both the presidency and parliament in Seychelles.
In addition to being the highest per-capita income country in Africa, Seychelles is also ranked the most honest and law-abiding country in Africa by Transparency International. Additionally, Seychelles is ranked a fully free nation by Freedom House.
The people of Seychelles form a unique and beautiful Creole culture with strong Asian, African and European elements. Seychelles is a member of the African Union (AU), the Commonwealth, the World Trade Organization (WTO), the Southern African Development Community (SADC) and the United Nations (UN).
The GDP of Seychelles is primarily based on the fisheries industry and tourism, each comprising around 49% of GDP, with minor exports of petroleum products, bananas and coconut oil taking up the rest.
Creole, English and French are the official languages of Seychelles and each is spoken widely throughout the islands.