Seychelles Cuba Friendship Association re-launched |15 May 2023
The elected committee of the Seychelles Cuba Friendship Association (SeCuFA) officially re-launched the association during its first annual general meeting held on Saturday May 13, 2023 at the Cuban embassy, Bel Eau.
In his presentation, the association’s chairperson, Andre Pool, said there were two options – whether to continue with the current association which had been dormant for a few years, or launch a brand new one.
“Nevertheless, one thing was clear and that was we needed an association,” Mr Pool stated.
There has been a revision of the SeCuFA constitution. The draft was circled in a WhatsApp group for the members to comment on it.
The revisions include keeping the name ‘SeCuFA’ and the place of business. The association for now will be based at the Cuban embassy for all meetings and other events.
Another clause states that SeCuFA will refrain from meddling in the internal affairs of Seychelles and Cuba. However, the association reserves the right to make its opinion known on any issues that it feels impacts the objectives or on itself as an association.
Furthermore, the constitution includes a membership fee to be decided by the executive committee.
A R600 yearly fee was agreed upon by the members present at the general meeting.
A new rule, Rule 9, has given the power to the committee to set up sub-committees where and when needed.
“However, we are not going to go running around creating sub-committees everywhere, just in case we might need it,” said Mr Pool.
The executive committee also reserves the right for the termination of memberships.
The election period of two years has been kept to decide whether or not the current executive remains in position.
In addition, a new banner for the association was launched which will be present for all future activities.
Mr Pool made it clear that there will be no politics whatsoever inside SeCuFA. “Anyone can join SeCuFA regardless of their political affiliation.”
However, if at any time any member is not in line with this clause, their membership will be terminated.
Mr Pool announced that he had a meeting with the Registrar General, and he got all the details on how to proceed to re-launch the association.
“We were given access to the file of SeCuFA, and were explained what has to be done to revive the association, so we went for it.”
However, the process with the Registrar has not been fully completed as there is still the matter of the association’s bank account to be opened.
“I am very optimistic that we are on the right track.”
The first committee were elected in February by the 35 SeCuFA members. Besides Mr Pool the other committee members are Alvin Grandcourt (vice-chairperson), Alexandrine Zelia (secretary), Peggy Agathine (treasurer), Liana Jean-Lopez, Yanaisy Jean and the ambassador of Cuba to Seychelles, Martha Hernández Caneiro.
Addressing the gathering, Ambassador Caneiro noted that April marked 45 years of amicable diplomacy between Seychelles and Cuba. “In this long and beautiful journey, we have also developed an intense friendship, which has been maintained in different moments.”
She went on to say that the re-launch of SeCuFA is another step in the legacy of the Seychelles-Cuban relationship. “We also pay tribute to the love of our Seychellois friends through this historic moment.”
She said she hopes the association will continue to attract more memberships of people who share the same values espoused by the two countries.
With the re-launch of SeCuFA, Cuba now has 1650 friendship associations in 150 countries.
“Long live the friendship between Seychelles and Cuba,” she concluded.
To coincide with the 45th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between Seychelles and Cuba, the President of Cuba Friendship Institute, Fernando Gonzalez Llort, sent a letter which was read by the treasurer, Liana Jean-Lopez.
“Solidarity is encouragement, it is a stimulus for the fight,” Mr Llort’s letter read.