British HC Patrick Lynch bids farewell after four years |11 October 2023
British High Commissioner, Patrick Lynch, has concluded his four-year tenure in Seychelles.
In a cordial gesture, the outgoing commissioner paid a farewell visit to President Wavel Ramkalawan at State House yesterday morning to express his gratitude towards the President and the people of Seychelles.
In an interview with the press, HC Lynch reflected on his time in Seychelles, noting it as a period of significant change.
He commended both the current and previous governments for their adept handling of the Covid-19 pandemic and the historic, peaceful democratic transition witnessed in the islands during his tenure.
“From the United Kingdom's perspective, it has been a time of expanding partnerships and highlighting the deep shared values and history between our two nations. We have worked together on a range of critical issues.”
Mr Lynch acknowledged the exceptional work carried out by the British High Commission's talented team, including numerous community projects across Seychelles. Over the past two years, their focus shifted towards policing and anti-corruption efforts, yielding substantial progress. He emphasised the potential for further advancements in these areas.
Highlighting the importance of repatriating illegally acquired assets back to the Seychellois communities, Mr Lynch stressed its potential to transform lives, combat drug-related issues, and safeguard the vital tourism industry.
The high commissioner also shared insights from his conversation with President Ramkalawan, which revolved around the democratic transition, tough decisions made by the president, and the mutual achievements of both governments, including community projects and anti-corruption initiatives.
“In these aspects, the UK and Seychelles stand as sovereign democratic partners,” he affirmed.
Speaking both professionally and personally, he expressed his profound attachment to the islands and its people. “My family and I are immensely sad to leave these incredible islands and the wonderful people here. We extend our heartfelt thanks for their partnership and friendship.”
Reflecting on his journey, the high commissioner acknowledged his team's willingness to learn and adapt to the local culture and traditions. “I have gained valuable insights into the creole culture, the strength of community and family ties, and the rich history of these islands. It has been truly fascinating.”
On a lighter note, he humorously admitted his inability to grasp the basics of sailing during his time in Seychelles. However, he underscored the overall positive experience, appreciating the unique charm of the islands.
In closing, Mr Lynch lauded the lesson that ambitious change is attainable even in smaller countries, emphasising the positive transformations witnessed in Seychelles during his tenure.
The outgoing British HC to Seychelles is moving to another ambassadorial post which will be announced soon.
Patrick Lynch assumed his post in Seychelles in August 2019.