Mrs Marie Thérèse Cateau, born on 04 December 1922, celebrated her 100th birthday, on Tuesday, at Jean Lebrun Hall, in Cassis.
An official ceremony was organised by the Ministry of Social Integration, Social Security and National Solidarity to honour the new centenarian. Mrs Cateau received, from the authorities, a cheque amounting to Rs 26,203; a centenarian medal; a certificate; a food processor; a gift from the Senior Citizens Council; and a cheque to the tune of Rs 10,000 from the National Solidarity Fund.
The Parliamentary Private Secretary, Dr Marie Christiane Dorine Chukowry, the Lord Mayor of the Municipal City Council of Port Louis, Mr Mahfooz Moussa Cadersaib, as well as family members and friends were present to celebrate the centennial birthday.
The centenarian was born in the village of Pamplemousses. Her father, Mr Jean Francois Florimond, was a conservator of forest and her mother, Mrs Martine Emmeline, was a housewife. She had five paternal step brothers and sisters and all of them have passed away.
Mrs Cateau studied up to Standard Four at Pamplemousses Government School. The Centenarian was eight years old when her father passed away and she was brought up by her paternal aunt. Presently, she lives in a rented house with her 16-year old grandchild. She is always being visited and helped by neighbours in the vicinity.
She lived in free union with Mr Jaune Jean Richard who was a driver. Out of this union, two children were born namely, one son and one daughter. Both of them have passed away. She has a legally adopted child, namely Mr Wesley Cateau. She got separated from her partner long ago and she had to work as housemaid to make both ends meet. Mrs Cateau has nine grandchildren and four great grandchildren.
As hobby, she watches television. Her favourite dish is “du riz, poisson salé’’ and “sauce blanche chou chou”. She cooks every day.
Mrs Cateau has no major health issues except from old age weakness and a bit of hard hearing. She attributes the secret of her longevity to her belief in God.