PARLIAMENTARY CIVIL CODE COMMITTEE HOLDS CRUCIAL MEETING

SEYCHELLES: RIGHTS/SNA/18/7/18 SABANews 1

The revision exercise began in 2013 and proceeded with a series of committee meetings (Pic. SNA)

VICTORIA – The SEYCHELLES National Assembly Civil Code Committee has launched discussions on a number of issues, including the sharing of property between unmarried couples.

The discussions also covered the ability to dispose freely of property on death; as well as other matters raised during the FIRST day of discussions for the revision of the national Civil Code.

The national news agency, SNA says the dialogue started this TUESDAY to scrutinise the SEYCHELLES Civil Code Bill of 2017, which will once approved, replace the Civil Code of SEYCHELLES Act 1975.

It quotes National Assembly Bills Committee Chairperson BERNARD GEORGE as saying the country has since 1976 been using the amended ENGLISH Civil Code.

He says things changed a few years ago when the Supreme Court proposed modernisation of certain areas of the Code due to ongoing changes in the country.

SNA also says the Civil Code provides the basic rules of law of SEYCHELLES for relationships between people.

It further says an international consultant who drafted the Bill has explained the purpose of the revision and the work that has been done for the past FIVE years.

TONY ANGELO, from the Faculty of Law of VICTORIA, University of WELLINGTON in NEW ZEALAND, says the Civil Code has articles that oppose some rights guaranteed under the Constitution.

He says there are provisions in the current Code that if challenged in Court will undoubtedly be found to be void on grounds of breach of fundamental rights.

National Assembly Bills Committee Chairperson BERNARD GEORGE says the Civil Code dates back to 1806 and was inherited while the archipelago was still a FRENCH colony.

He says the authorities then set up the Committee and used the theory of law established over the years to come up with new articles for the Code, a document of more than ONE-THOUSAND pages.

Pertinent and sensitive issues debated involve equalising the rights of children, sharing of property in an arrangement where a married couple and a lover of ONE of them live together while sharing sexual relations – en ménage relationship.

The revised Code also aims to cover the rights of co-owners and the ability to dispose freely of property on death, as well as provide for the civil rights of SEYCHELLOIS in modern form and appropriately reflect and protect current social institutions.

SNA says the revision exercise began in 2013 and proceeded with a series of committee meetings, all of which were open to public consultations.

Also attending the discussions are MAURITIAN legal representatives, SABIR KADEL, a senior law reform officer, and ROSARIO DOMINGUE, the Chief Executive of the MAURITIUS Law Reform Commission.

Like SEYCHELLES, the neighbouring MAURITIUS has also revised its Civil Code, which was similarly inherited from the FRENCH./Sabanews/cam

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