Tuesday, June 16, 2015



It is 2 years this month since the story broke on James Michel’s secret offshore company and bank accounts in the British Virgin Islands(BVI), from the International Consortium of Investment Journalist (ICIJ) through the offshore leaks database on his Soleil Overseas Holding Ltd. The story first broke on the facebook group, Seychelles Daily and was then picked up in the local press.

Just prior to that, the Seychelles Government took on a massive Bond Debt with Lehman Brothers in 2007 which totalled over $300 Million at an interest of 10% per annum. And shortly after James Michel of San Souci, Mahe Seychelles, registered an offshore company called Soleil Overseas Holding ltd. At the time, Seychelles had foreign exchange control laws. No citizen of Seychelles could depart from the country with more than $400.00. No transaction, could take place, to transfer funds overseas, unless the Central Bank of Seychelles approved the transaction. We need to know where every single cent of Lehman Brothers Bond money went and what the finance charges of these transactions were. Which as citizens of Seychelles, we will have to repay, commencing in 2015 for Ten (10) years.

This was the first time ever that public information had emerged about the country’s head of state assets overseas. Why does our head of state need a secret overseas offshore company and bank account when we have an offshore industry right here? Why has the President completely ignored this legitimate request for transparency by local newspapers that reported on the matter at the time? He has stayed mute on this for the past 2 years! Transparency, is this not one of his beliefs, along with “Judge me by my actions”. His action of no action over the past 2 years speaks volumes. Is the President hiding land or business assets? The real owners of Fishermans Cove Hotel and H Resort hotel are ultimately traced to an offshore BVI company called Hotel Properties Ltd and so is the Four Seasons Hotel through Petit Anse development Ltd and Maritime Property Holdings ltd over in BVI. What does the President expect the people of Seychelles to think?

By A.Pierre