Seychelles is a multiparty republic governed by a president, Council of Ministers, and National Assembly. In 2015 voters narrowly re-elected president James Michel of Parti Lepep in an election that international observers criticized for voter intimidation and vote buying. In September 2016 President Michel resigned and appointed his vice president, Danny Faure, president of the republic, as per constitutional provisions. President Faure was the Parti Lepep vice-presidential candidate, and after assuming the presidency, he declared he would not stand for the leadership of his party. On October 16, a year after he assumed office, Faure withdrew from Parti Lepep, marking the first time since independence that the head of state was not the head of a political party. Faure is serving the remaining four years of Michel’s mandate and has never stood as a presidential candidate. In September 2016 the opposition coalition Seychellois Democratic Union won the majority of seats in legislative assembly elections, which international and domestic observers called fair but not free due to lack of credibility of the election management body. This was the Seychellois Democratic Union’s first majority since the establishment of a multiparty system, and since then the government has been in a state of “cohabitation.”
Civilian authorities maintained effective control over the security forces.
The most significant human rights issues included: prolonged pretrial detention; corruption; ineffective government enforcement of regulations concerning domestic violence against women and children; and forced labor.
The government took steps to punish officials who committed abuses, whether in the security services or elsewhere in the government, but impunity existed.