Washington DC, USA: President Danny Faure accepted the National Geographic Society's prestigious "Planetary and Leadership Award" at the National Geographic Awards ceremony, held last night at the George Washington University, in Washington DC. The President of the Republic shared the award with former President James Michel, who also attended the event.
The award recognises a world leader who has successfully established globally significant protected areas, such as national parks, wilderness areas, or marine reserves, that are fully shielded from exploitation. In his acceptance speech, President Faure said that environmental conservation has been key for Seychelles for a long time, and also has ethical importance. He added that the award from the National Geographic society is a testament to the achievements of the country to date.
"Seychelles is a champion of environmental conservation, because we believe in it. Since 1977, we have been convinced that protecting our environment is not just the right thing to do, but the necessary thing to do. With this award, the National Geographic Society is acknowledging the work we have done, and it is a powerful, emotional recognition of the longstanding vision of Seychelles and our journey so far, for me to be on this stage today," said President Faure.
President Faure dedicated the award to the people of Seychelles, saying that Seychellois citizens have a strong connection with nature and remain committed to successfully protecting and preserving the environment. He advised people and countries around the world to do the same.
"I dedicate this award to the hardworking and committed citizens of my beloved country – Seychelles. They know that nature is a fundamental part of us, and recognise the important link between humanity and nature. I hope that people and governments across the world recognise this connection we each have to the environment, and continue to work to protect it."
In his acceptance speech former President James Michel thanked National Geographic for the award saying that this was evidence and recognition of the society’s support in what Seychelles is doing. He also reiterated that there is one direction ahead.
"There is only one message of healing, conservation and sustainability. Our shared future is blue. The award that I am receiving today signals your own commitment. It will give heart to many people around the world who believe the same. Your foresight is deeply valued. I accept my award with pride and humility," said former President Michel.
Seychelles News Agency
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