The Queen Elizabeth College is the winner of the 2019 Omnicane Award. The results were made official during a ceremony held at Holiday Inn Mauritius Mon Trésor, Plaine Magnien, on Thursday 19 September 2019. The winning team received the challenge trophy and each team member received a cash prize of Rs 20 000 and a souvenir shield.
With an overwhelming participation of 48 entries, the theme for this year was: ‘The role and importance of Kreol Morisien as a tool for communication, education, social integration and economic development in Mauritius. What should be done to further promote its use and status in the nation building process?’
Mr Jerome Jaen, Group Chief Operations Officer of Omnicane, The Right Honorable Sir Anerood Jugnauth, GCSK, KCMG, QC,
Mr. Didier Maigrot, Chairperson of Omnicane, with the members of the winning team from Queen Elizabeth College: Purvashi Sanjana Gopee, Hinishta Gopaul, Ashta Devi Hurchurn, Kaushiki Mulloo, Saarah Bibi Nafisah Tagally and
Mrs Sangeeta Nunkoo, Deputy Rector of the QEC.
The runner-up team is the Royal College Curepipe, composed of Toshiren Sooben, Thayumann Bissoonauth, Mehdi Fatadin, Siddharth Janghi and Yash Pursun. They each received a cash prize of Rs 8 000 and a souvenir shield. The third prize was attributed to Zaina Teemul, Keshika Anmol, Diya Toolsie, Jesska Zhi Yee Wan Yan Keong, and Somya Sookraz of Dr Maurice Curé State College. They each received a cheque of Rs 2,000 and a souvenir shield.
The members of the Jury were:
- Mr. (Professor) Vinesh Y. Hookoomsing PhD., Professor of Linguistics and Former Pro Vice-Chancellor of the University of Mauritius. He was the founding President of the Mauritian Cultural Centre (2001-2005) and chaired the Akademi Kreol Morisien (2010-2012), both set up by the Government. His current research focuses on the development and use of Morisien for higher functions and levels.
Mr. Raj Makoond, Former Chief Executive Officer of Business Mauritius. He is presently the Program Director at Eclosia and Chairman of the Regional Energy Working Group of Business Mauritius.
- Mrs. Nita Rughoonundun-Chellapermal holds a PhD in Education Studies and a MPhil in General and Applied Linguistics. She is the Associate Professor, Head of School of Arts and Humanities at the Mauritius Institute of Education.
For Mr. Didier Maigrot, Chairperson of Omnicane: "Thee objective of this year’s project was to hear from our youth, how they relate to the kreol morisien’s journey in our society, how do they relate and interact with this specific expression of our country and its personality – how do young Mauritians of the day relate to this integral part for common history and how do they project themselves with this legacy. We have no doubts, by just taking cognizance of the number of entries, that they did feel motivated and critically reviewed the theme and came up with a high quality assessment cum projections for our nation building process, while also bringing forward valuable recommendations and testimonies."
During his speech, The Right Honorable Sir Anerood Jugnauth G.C.S.K; K.C.M.G; Q.C, Minister Mentor, Minister of Defence, Minister of Rodrigues, highlighted: "I believe such competition is an opportunity given to the youth to express their views on the subjects of national importance and to contribute to the nation building process."
During the ceremony, the children of Elles C Nous Association, sponsored by Omnicane Foundation, presented 3 of their paintings to the members of the Jury and Mr Jacques Dinan, coordinator of the Award since 1974. Elles C Nous Association is an NGO founded in 2007 and directed by Mrs Mylene Abdoolkader. The Association regroup some eighty children of five to seventeen years old encountering some family and poverty difficulties of some Port Louis and Beau Bassin / Rose Hill regions, by offering them the opportunity to develop artistic and other talents as well as remedial classes to prevent them from social scourges.
Since the first edition in 1971, known as the Lonhro award, the Omnicane award took over from the Mon Trésor award and is organized under the auspices of Omnicane Foundation.
A view of the audience during the prize-giving ceremony of Omnicane Award 2019.
The runner-up team, Le College Royal de Curepipe Toshiren Sooben, Thayumann Bissoonauth, Mehdi Fatadin, Siddharth Janghi and Yash Pursun surrounded by Mr Rajiv Ramlugon, Group chief Sustainability officer of Omnicane & Hon. Maneesh Gobin, Attorney General, Minister of Justice, Human Rights and Institutional Reforms.
The third prize: Team of Dr Maurice Curé State College: Zaina Teemul, Keshika Anmol, Diya Toolsie, Jesska Zhi Yee Wan Yan Keong, and Somya Sookraz, surrounded by Mr Hahmid Seelarbokus, Group HR Manager and Hon. Mahendranuth (Bobby) S. Hurreeram.
The members of the Association Elles C Nous, along with Mme Mylene Abdool Kader, the Director, surrounding Lady Sarojini Jugnauth and Right Honorable Sir Anerood Jugnauth, GCSK, KCMG, QC.
The winning team from Queen Elizabeth College: Purvashi Sanjana Gopee, Hinishta Gopaul, Ashta Devi Hurchurn, Kaushiki Mulloo, Saarah Bibi Nafisah Tagally.