The Prime Minister, Mr Pravind Kumar Jugnauth, reiterated his resolve for his continued support to the Nation’s elderlies this morning, as he graced a ceremony held to mark the International Day of Older Persons 2023, on Sunday morning at the Swami Vivekananda International Convention Centre, Pailles.
Various Ministers including the Minister of Social Integration, Social Security and National Solidarity, Mrs Fazila Jeewa-Daureeawoo and members of the Parliament, attended the event that was held under the theme of ‘Fulfilling the Promises of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights for Older Persons: Across Generations’.
In his address, Prime Minister Jugnauth highlighted Government’s recognition of the significant contribution of the elderly members of the society in charting the success path of the country, adding that they are still called upon to play a key role in the society, namely to convey to the new generation with their life experience, lessons, values and advices. He encouraged the younger members of the community to valorise the teachings of their elders, so that they are guided to take the right decisions and paths.
Speaking about the theme of this year’s celebration, Mr Pravind Kumar Jugnauth underpinned the necessity for all Governments to promote the human rights for older persons, while pledging for doing his utmost best to provide them with all required facilities and benefits so that they live in decent conditions and with dignity. He pointed out that as the Head of Government, he is championing the cause for healthy living among the whole population and thus exhorted them to on their part, engage in fitness activities and opt for healthy eating habits, reminding that a good health is the most precious life asset.
PM Jugnauth further stated that the elaboration of the National Integrated Care for Older People Strategic and Action Plan 2022–2026 and continued improvement of health infrastructures across the country are among the measures being undertaken to ensure the best health services for our elderlies.
Other measures being undertaken to improve the quality of life of the elderly population were brought forth by the Prime Minister, namely: the setting up of recreation centres across the country, the latest one being the Sir Anerood Jugnauth Recreational Centre at Riambel and another one under construction in Rodrigues; subsidies on essential goods; and sports infrastructure.
Furthermore, Mr Jugnauth emphasised that Government has concretised its vision to improve the quality of life of the elderly population, through landmark measures such as the increase in Old Age Pensions, while reaffirming his resolve to put their welfare at the core of Government’s agenda.
On her part, Minister Fazila Jeewa-Daureeawoo renewed Government’s consideration for the welfare of the elderly population of the Nation, underlining their key role in forging a harmonious society and the progress of the country. The Minister stated that investing in the welfare of the population, addressing inequalities, fostering social integration, are the key priorities of the Government in its vision of paving the country’s sustainable social and economic development.
Moreover, Minister Jeewa-Daureeawoo dwelt on the series of measures rolled out to ensure an enhanced quality of life for this population segment through improved financial autonomy, health services and social activities. One key measure, she recalled, is the drastic increase in all Basic pensions over the last few years. She also informed that her Ministry’s budget has been increased to Rs 51.1 billion, to ensure that the best services and facilities are catered for the vulnerable population, including the elderly, adding that the its Medical unit now counts 333 medical officers.
Minister Fazila Jeewa-Daureeawoo concluded by emphasising that the Government cherishes the trust that the elderly population has placed in it, and reassured that it will continue to work for their welfare.