Seychelles President Wavel Ramkalwan has declared a state of emergency on Thursday (Dec 7) after an explosion at a store a and flooding that followed heavy rainfall, said the presidency in a statement. The president has ordered all citizens, except workers for essential services to stay at home.
“Following an explosion at the CCCL explosives store that has caused massive damage… and major destruction caused by flooding due to heavy rains, the President has declared a State of Emergency for today the 7th December,” the statement said as reported by the AFP.
“All schools will be closed. Only workers in the essential services and persons travelling will be allowed free movement. This is to allow the emergency services to carry out essential work,” the statement added.
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The explosion the presidency referred to, took place in Providenc industrial area in Mahe, which is the largest island in the Indian ocean nation. The country is a tropical haven and tourism-dependent.
According to the statement, the explosion caused “massive damage” to the Providence Industrial Zone. Also, the rains had resulted in “major destruction”. There were no further details in the statement.
“The Seychelles International Airport is still operational and ferry services between islands are operating for visitors,” said official X handle of Visit Seychelles.
The Seychelles is a former British colony and the archipelago is made up of 115 islands. As per 2021 data with the World Bank, it is the richest African country as measured by per capita GDP.
(With inputs from agencies)