PRESIDENT MICHEL LAUNCHES ARBORETUM
A vision dating back some 14 years, before James Alix Michel even became President of the Seychelles, came to a conclusion yesterday when he opened the archipelagos first arboretum. Located at Barbarons / Grand Anse on a 17 hectares plot, the new arboretum is as much planned for posterity and for Seychellois to come and see their extensive biodiversity in plants and trees but also for tourists to come and visit as part of their regular tours and excursions across the island.
Seychelles for long has had a botanical garden, equally a tourist hotspot but the more extensive and comprehensive arboretum will go a long way to facilitate research and keeping endangered flora alive and well while also serving as a seed centre to restock other parts of the archipelago with seedlings in the future.
President Michel planted the first official tree, none less than the famous Coco de Mer palm and it is understood that from here on, state visitors and VIP visitors may be asked to plant a tree of their own during their visit to appreciate the efforts of the Seychelles to stay green in all aspects of day to day life.
A regular source from Mahe had this to add: The National Botanical Garden Foundation is now tasked to look after the arboretum and it is foreseen that the private sector from the tourism industry and other businesses will come on board as sponsors of sections of the new park. They can adopt a tree, plant a tree or adopt a certain area and help with the cost to maintain and expand the plant and tree variety. The fact that this is a project initiated by President Michel way before he became President is also significant because it shows that our governments commitment towards keeping our environment clean and pristine is not just a sudden idea but has deep roots. You should come and see yourself when next back in Seychelles and who knows, perhaps even plant a tree.
How intriguing a thought that will be, but if asked will certainly oblige, at the arboretum or anywhere else for that matter. Seychelles, truly Another World.