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Mauritius government designates Ameenah Gurib-Fakim as first woman president


Port Louis, June 2: The Mauritius government has designated an internationally-renowned scientist and biologist Ameenah Gurib-Fakim as the first woman president of the country.

According to media reports, Mauritius parliament will approve her name for the position of president on Thursday. The opposition has said it will support her appointment, making the vote a mere formality.

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She is likely to take oath on Friday.

Fakim has been designated as first woman president after Kailash Purryag resigned from office on May 29. Purryag was appointed president in 2012 by the island's previous Labour party government of former premier Navin Ramgoolam.

Mauritius is one of the richest -- and least corrupt -- countries in Africa, a middle-income country of some 1.3 million people with a per capita GDP of just over $9,000 (7,200 euros).Once dependent on sugar exports, the island has built up a strong outsourcing and financial services sector, and an important tourism industry.

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Gurib-Fakim is currently director of the Mauritius-headquartered Centre for Phytotherapy Research (CEPHYR), which carries out research on plants for use in cosmetics, nutrition and therapy. An alumni of the universities of Exeter and Surrey in Britain, she is also the chair of organic chemistry at Mauritius University, and has worked with the World Bank and other international institutions.

OneIndia News

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