Kate Byng-Hall reports on local outrage as an oil spill contaminates the beautiful ocean around Mauritius.
Photo by Jeremy Bishop
100,000 Mauritians out of the country’s 1.27 million-strong population have protested in the capital, St Louis, after an oil spill off the south-east coast which threatens the island’s rich wildlife.
The march is an encouraging development in environmental consciousness in the country, as protestors chanted the slogan, “citoyen leve citoyen” (citizens wake up citizens).
In late-July, the Japanese-owned ship the MV Wakashio was shipwrecked at Pointe d'Esny in Mauritius, a small island in the Indian Ocean near Madagascar. A fortnight later on the 6th of August, the ship’s hull split, leading to over 1000 tons of oil spilling into the ocean. Protestors have criticised the Mauritian government for not intervening and preventing the spill in that two-week period, with some calling for officials to resign or even for t