Elders, as key drivers of culture and tradition, positively contribute to the welfare of the family and the progress of Mauritius. Government is thus determined, with relentless efforts, to enhance the support extended to the elderly by offering them adequate healthcare facilities as well as modernising the country with state-of-the-art road infrastructures and combating the drug scourge for a better society.
This was the gist of the message to the elderly by the Prime Minister, Minister of Home Affairs, External Communications and National Development Unit, Minister of Finance and Economic Development, Mr Pravind Kumar Jugnauth, today at the Social Welfare Centre in Saint Pierre. He was speaking during an event in the context of celebrations marking the International Day of Older Persons 2018. It was organised for senior citizens by the Social Welfare Division of the Ministry of Gender Equality, Child Development and Family Welfare.
In his address, Prime Minister Jugnauth underlined that the elderly population with their life experiences, play an instrumental role in transferring values and knowledge to the family and the society.
Elders, the Prime Minister stated, should serve as role models to guide the younger generation to tread on the right path and thus they will be protected from social ills such as the drug scourge. He reiterated Government’s unflinching resolve to tackle the drug scourge and added that the high number of drug seizures is an evidence of the commitment of the authorities to fight this evil which is negatively impacting on the society.
He also highlighted the first ranking of Mauritius in Africa for overall governance as per the Mo Ibrahim Index of African Governance (IIAG) 2018.
Moreover, the Prime Minister emphasised that there are various Governmental measures which have been taken with a view to improving the quality of life of the elderly as well as the population at large. These are: increase in the old age pension from Rs 3,500 in 2014 to Rs 5,810 in 2018; and provision in Budget 2018-2019 for the setting up of two elderly day care centres at Bambous and Chemin Grenier to cater for the needs of senior citizens.
Prime Minister Jugnauth also indicated that the construction works of the new Recreation Centre for the Elderly and Disabled at Riambel is expected to be completed soon. Upon its completion, it will provide an opportunity for senior citizens and persons with disabilities to enjoy pleasurable stays in a hotel-type environment with disabled-friendly facilities as well as a swimming pool, a playground for outdoor activities, five kiosks, a jogging track and a pétanque court. The Prime Minister also encouraged the elderly to engage themselves in physical exercises for a healthier lifestyle.
Source: Government of Mauritius