With 12 March dawning on paradise island, maybe it's time for some pre-celebration reflection!
So, 44 years after our accession to independence from United Kindom, Mauritius can now boast to be a central figure in Africa, but what if this 12 March 1968 never was? What would we be? What if...
Well, first of all, if we were still a British colony, we would not be a central figure in Africa, but in the whole world! Yes, with paradise-like beaches on UK soil - remember we are still under British 'ruling'- the Tourism Authority would certainly propell the island as THE place to be on holidays! And forget the 8th position in the Top 10 Honeymoon Destinations, with funding and advertising from mainland UK, Mauritius would have topped the competition!
Our economic situation might have not been as secured as it is now, but we would certainly have had more economic freedom thanks to our then partnerships with European economic treaties and such! The Pound Sterling would position us as leaders in the Indian Ocean and BRIC countries in the region, namely China and India, would simple stand no chance on the market! Let's face it, with UK franchises in Mauritius, UK technology and UK expertise, our industries would raffle the Indian Ocean market and stay competitive against all odds! Indeed, quality products would have been available at reasonable prices (rememeber we would receive wages in Pounds) not only to Mauritians but also to a major part of rich Africa and Indonesia! China, with their, let's face it, low-value and/or cheap copycats would simply fail to sell and it's economic status would lag by a whole ocean's market, disbalance it's treaties with India, lose it's Top position in Economic growth, face civil strife eventually out of so much repression, but let's cut the creative crap - back to US!
So, if we did not acceed to Indepedence, H&M would probably be here by now and the working population would definitely dress WAY better. Seriously, did you or did you not ever see a government employee in her fifties leaving the office in Port Louis in a weird flower-print ensemble so old you can actually see the buttons changed colour!? Anyway, we would probably have staged the Gay Pride earlier than in 2006; we would have lost our shamefull top position in Diabetes spread; we would have better ways of fighting drugs addiction and dealing with AIDS thanks to the awesome military-like customs services UK would provide us with! Our University would probably be named University of Mokashire and be amongst the leading in some field unlike our now there-is-no-adjective-to-qualify-such-lame-position of 3525th in the world and only 36th in Africa - one of the poorest continents on the world! SERIOUSLY!
But let's not wear blinkers and see the bright side of free Mauritius! We have free education through to secondary level, University is scandalously accessible, although much less can be said about the degree recognition; we ahve free transport for old people and students; we have the luxury of enjoying our beaches wherever we want (wait, that's not very true anymore :P); and above all, we have our Dholl Puri, and for that, I say Glory to Thee Mauritius!
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