News on Sunday

New Year’s Eve celebration: A peep into the intimacy of personalities

After one year of hard work, business persons, social workers and MPs, just like most of us, need some days off to put our feet up and enjoy life. While some prefer to travel abroad for the end of year festivities, others prefer to stay at home with their families. We take a peep into how personalities who made the headlines this year will celebrate their New Year’s Eve. Georges Talbotier: “A small get together with friends” The director of Trimetys Group, Georges Talbotier, believes that after a busy year in the business world, it is very important to have quality time with family members during the end of year. “It is now time to cherish moments of joy, sharing happiness and have positive moments. We do not forget anything but we have to move forward. For the New Year, we have not planned anything yet. But it will certainly be a small get-together with friends,” he shares. Seizing this opportunity, he wishes that the year 2016 bring major achievements in all spheres. “I hope 2016 will be propitious for everyone and that Mauritius will remain safe against all the tragedies striking the world,” says Mr Talbotier.  
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Danielle Selvon: “Intimate celebrations with family” After her first year experience in Parliament as an MP, Danielle Selvon plans to celebrate Christmas, New Year Eve and New Year with family. “We will celebrate in private with family. We celebrate Christmas first and foremost as an important religious event, the birth of Jesus Christ, while the New Year will be yet another occasion for us to address prayers to the Almighty and seek His blessings. During that period, we also express our joy, attending parties, lunches and dinners in a convivial atmosphere mostly with family members and very close friends. This end of year celebrations is, for us, a family affair. We also pray for the poor and people grappling with severe difficulties in life,” she says. For 2016, Danielle Selvon wishes for a national economic revival that will help every unemployed get a decent job and lead a better life. “We pray for the happiness and prosperity of all Mauritians,” she adds.  
  Ambal Jeanne: “ With friends and families around a dinner” Director of SOS Femmes and well known women activist in Mauritius, Ambal Jeanne says that New Year is a time to make oneself happy. “After working for a whole year, the last few days of December should be dedicated to yourself. For New Year’s Eve, I will be spending time with friends and families around a dinner. It will be a small gathering to welcome this New Year,” she states. As for 2016, she expects better conditions for women in society.          
 
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Jonathan Drew: “Spend New Year’s Eve in a rare quiet moment” Since 2014, Jonathan Drew has been the British High Commissioner to Mauritius. He is now on his second year in our country. Far from his own country and friends, the British High Commissioner is going to spend New Year’s Eve in a quiet place.  “I am going to spend New Year’s Eve in a rare quiet moment with my partner, enjoying the beauty of Mauritius and celebrating the country’s wonderful diversity,” he confides.        
    Veda Baloomoody: “Spend some good and private time” Opposition MP Veda Baloomoody believes that 2015 has been very eventful in terms of parliamentary workings and he is going to prepare for 2016. For the time being however, he is planning to spend some really good and private time with his family. “We will be at home and celebrate with family. After some years, my children who study abroad will be in Mauritius, so we prefer to have something among us only,” he says. For 2016, the MP wishes that the young generation is able to make a place for themselves in society and achieve their dreams.    
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Maya Hanoomanjee: “Dedicating the New year to my family” Maya Hanoomanjee, the first female Speaker of Mauritius, has had a hectic year with new responsibilities. The Speaker of the National Assembly is going to dedicate her New Year’s Eve to her family as throughout the year, she has been busy and has spent very little time with her close ones. “It is now an occasion to be with family and spend time with them. 2015 has been very eventful and happy year and everything went well. We are planning a small holiday but nothing has been finalised yet,” she reveals. Seizing this opportunity, she hopes that in 2016, the problem of poverty and unemployment will be solved.  
  Australian High Commissioner, Susan Coles: “Spending time with my husband’s family” Susan Coles, Australian High Commissioner in Mauritius since February 2014, was a career officer at the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade and has previously served overseas as Special Advisor at the APEC Secretariat in Singapore, and as First Secretary at the Australian Embassy and Permanent Mission to the United Nations, Vienna. Until recently, Ms Coles was Director of the Department’s WTO and Regional Trade Policy Section. Overseas during this period, the High Commissioner shares how she will spend the New Year’s Eve. “I will spend New Year’s in Australia, south of Melbourne, with members of my husband’s extended family. This will follow spending Christmas in Adelaide, my hometown, with my family. Happy New Year to all.”    
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US Ambassador, Shari Villarosa: “ Enjoying warm weather” Ambassador Shari Villarosa was confirmed as Ambassador to the Republic of Mauritius and the Republic of Seychelles in September 2012. As she will be celebrating her final New Year as U.S Ambassador in Mauritius, Shari Villarosa shares with readers how she will spend her New Year. She previously served as Deputy Coordinator for Regional Affairs for the Bureau of Counter-terrorism at the Department of State. She also served as Chief of Mission in Rangoon, Burma.  “I will spend New Year’s Eve in Rodrigues with friends. This will be my third and final New Year of celebrations in Mauritius. It is cold at this time of year in the United States, so I consider myself very fortunate to live here enjoying the warm weather and beautiful beaches. I look forward every New Year to peace, love and happiness every day in the coming year. After the events of the past year, we can definitely use more of all!”
  Sen Ramsamy: “ Atmosphere full of fun” Sen Ramsamy, tourism consultant, was appointed as Director of the Tourism Authority on September 14th this year. Holder of a Masters Degree in Business Administration from George Washington University, Sen Ramsamy has 30 years of experience in the tourism field. He confides that New Year’s eve is normally quite eventful for him. “I love to spend it at home with a special dinner with my wife, children and with some guests. The atmosphere is generally filled with good music, fun and laughter to culminate with the traditional fire crackers.” Sen Ramsamy says that New Year’s eve is also a very special day for him. “It’s also my birthday on that day. I normally start the day early morning with prayers at home or in a nearby temple if time permits and then I head to the office to present my New Year wishes to all my colleagues and friends. Sen Ramsamy seizes the opportunity to present to his fellow compatriots and to all tourism stakeholders and tourists on the island, a Merry Christmas and a Bright New Year 2016, full of good health, peace and inner joy.
  Jane Ragoo: “ Time to reenergize” Jane Ragoo was the former employee and leader of the Federation of United Workers (Fédération des Travailleurs Unis). Trade Unionist for over thirty years, Jane Ragoo has been fighting for the cause of workers. The co-leader of the Confédération des Travailleurs du Secteur Privé (CTSP) confides that she will spend New Year’s Eve with her family. “My family and I will celebrate New Year’s eve the way we always do. It’s a time for us to reenergize ourselves.  We will have our traditional prayer at midnight and then we will blow the fireworks. We will pray for peace and unity in Mauritius and in the whole universe. It is also an occasion to gather with neighbours and share a drink. On the 1st of January, we will have tea at my mother-in-law’s place at 3 pm and later we will have our traditional family dinner at my father’s. On that day we will have a special thought for all those who are not amongst us anymore and especially for my mother who left us a year ago. We will surely miss her and think about her a lot during the festivities,” she shares. Jane Ragoo states that she will also have a special thought for all private sector workers who will be working on Christmas Eve and New Year’s Eve.
  Arnaud Dalais: “ It’s a special time for all my family” Chairman of CIEL since 2010, Arnaud Dalais is well known in the world of business. He is also Chairperson of CIEL Textile Ltd and Sun Resorts Ltd, two companies that are listed on the Stock Exchange of Mauritius. Recently appointed as the president of Business Mauritius, Arnaud Dalais shares that the end of year festivities are a special moment for him. “It’s a special time for all my family as we gather to celebrate. For Christmas time, we have a big gathering at my home together with my children as well as my grandchildren. This year will be also special as I have my son coming back home from South Africa for the celebrations. We have not decided yet where we will celebrate New Year’s Eve. Who knows perhaps we will celebrate at new Shangri-La’s Le Touessrok. It will also be a way to see the workers and celebrate with them as well,” he says.
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