The former CEO of the Seychelles Fishing Authority (SFA) has been elected as the Executive Secretary of the Indian Ocean Tuna Commission (IOTC) during the 16th Session of the IOTC held on Saturday, April 21, in Freemantle, Australia.
Mr. Rondolph Payet, currently working as the Regional Executive Secretary for the World Bank-funded South West Indian Ocean Fisheries Project, was one of three shortlisted candidates out of 30 applicants for the post.
“It was an extremely emotional moment, and [I’m] delighted with results. I’m looking forward to be back in Seychelles, and proud and honored to be part of ‘Striving for Seychelles’” stated Mr. Payet.
The Minister for Foreign Affairs, Mr. Jean-Paul Adam, said:
“I warmly congratulate Rondolph on his election. His election reflects the leadership of Seychelles on a number of developmental issues - not least the question of equitable and sustainable fisheries and ocean management. We must continue to strive for the development of the blue economy, and we wish Rondolph well for when he takes up his new role.”
The Seychelles delegation to the 16th IOTC Session is being lead by the CEO of SFA, Mr. Finley Racombo (the IOTC meeting is still ongoing and ends on Thursday).
As part of the process, the candidates were required to make a presentation outlining their strategy and vision for the IOTC Secretariat. Mr. Payet listed his main focus areas as improving scientific advice and artisanal catch systems; assisting developing countries in adhering to a comfortable level of compliance and data streaming; establishing effective mechanisms assisting the coastal states to address their constraints; and influencing financing mechanisms in tuna fisheries research, management, and capacity building.
Mr. Payet, who is expected to take up his three-year tenure in early 2013, also described his main ambition as “able [to] coordinate the efforts of the all the members countries for better management and improve economic returns of the tuna fisheries to all the coastal states in the Indian Ocean.”
After serving for seven years as the Chief Executive Officer of the Seychelles Fishing Authority, Mr. Payet became the Regional Executive Secretary, South West Indian Ocean Fisheries Project, a World Bank multimillion-funded research project for improved management of fish stocks in the region, including tuna.
In 2009, he received the “Chevalier de L’Ordre National de Merit Agricole” (Knighthood of the National Order of Merit) from the French government for “distinguished achievement in fisheries.” He has a BSc in Fisheries Science and Oceanography; a Masters degree in Marine and Coastal Resource Management, earned with Distinction; a Postgraduate Diploma in GIS and Fisheries Management; and a Masters in Business Administration.