Anerood Jugnauth

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Anerood Jugnauth

Anerood Jugnauth.jpg
Jugnauth opening the hearing of the Chagossian dispute territory in the ICJ
2nd Prime Minister of Mauritius
In office
17 December 2014 – 23 January 2017
PresidentKailash Purryag
Monique Ohsan Bellepeau (Acting)
Ameenah Gurib
Preceded byNavinchandra Ramgoolam
Succeeded byPravind Jugnauth
In office
12 September 2000 – 7 October 2003
PresidentCassam Uteem
Angidi Chettiar
Ariranga Pillay
Karl Offmann
Preceded byNavin Ramgoolam
Succeeded byPaul Bérenger
In office
30 June 1982 – 15 December 1995
MonarchElizabeth II (1982–1992)
PresidentVeerasamy Ringadoo
Cassam Uteem
Governor GeneralDayendranath Burrenchobay
Seewoosagur Ramgoolam
Veerasamy Ringadoo
Preceded bySeewoosagur Ramgoolam
Succeeded byNavin Ramgoolam
4th President of Mauritius
In office
7 October 2003 – 31 March 2012
Prime MinisterPaul Bérenger
Navin Ramgoolam
Vice PresidentRaouf Bundhun
Angidi Chettiar
Monique Ohsan Bellepeau
Preceded byKarl Offmann
Succeeded byMonique Ohsan Bellepeau (Acting)
Leader of the Opposition
In office
20 December 1976 – 11 June 1982
Prime MinisterSeewoosagur Ramgoolam
Preceded byGaetan Duval
Succeeded byPaul Bérenger
Leader of the Militant Socialist Movement
In office
8 April 1983 – February 2003
Preceded byPosition established
Succeeded byPravind Jugnauth
Member of Parliament
for Piton and Rivière du Rempart
Assumed office
11 December 2014
Preceded byPrathiba Bolah
In office
11 September 2000 – 7 September 2003
Preceded byDeva Virahsawmy
Succeeded byRajesh Jeetah
In office
20 December 1976 – 20 December 1995
Preceded byHurry Ramnarain
Succeeded byDeva Virahsawmy
In office
21 October 1963 – 7 August 1967
Preceded byPosition established
Succeeded byHurry Ramnarain
Personal details
Born (1930-03-29) 29 March 1930 (age 90)
La Caverne, British Mauritius
Political partyIndependent Forward Block (Before 1965)
All Hindu Congress (1965–1970)
Mauritian Militant Movement (1970–1982)
Militant Socialist Movement (1983–2003; 2012–present)
Independent (2003–2012)
Spouse(s)Sarojini Ballah
Children2, including Pravind
Alma materInns of Court School of Law

Sir Anerood Jugnauth GCSK, KCMG, QC, MP, PC (born 29 March 1930) is a Mauritian politician and barrister who has served as both President and Prime Minister of Mauritius.

Jugnauth has continuously held a constitutional office since 1976, except for the periods 1995–2000 and 2012–2014. He was Leader of the Opposition from 1976 to 1982. He served as Prime Minister from 1982 to 1995 and again from 2000 to 2003. He was then elected as President of Mauritius[1][2] and served as such from 2003 to 2012. Following his party's victory in the 2014 general elections, he was appointed again to serve his sixth term as Prime Minister by President Kailash Purryag on 14 December 2014.

He served four consecutive terms as Prime Minister from 1982 to 1995 and was then voted out of office from 1995 to 2000. He is the longest serving prime minister with more than 18 years of tenure, thus overtaking Sir Seewoosagur Ramgoolam, who held the office for 14 years. As leader of the Militant Socialist Movement, he became Prime Minister again, for a fifth term, after the 2000 election. His alliance partner, Paul Bérenger of the Mauritian Militant Movement, succeeded him in 2003 after serving as Jugnauth's deputy for three years. Jugnauth was then elected president in 2003. Under his leadership, his party/alliances won 5 general parliamentary elections in a row, those in 1976, 1982, 1983, 1987, 1991.[3] His party/alliances won 7 general elections (out of 8) where he was leader and presented as prime ministerial candidate. He is also the only Mauritian who served as an elected member on each level in the country as he first served as village and town Councillor (being elected as a Councillor for Palma village in 1956 and again Councillor for the town of Vacoas-Phoenix in 1964). He then served as a Member of Parliament (elected in 1963), became Minister of State in 1965 which preceded his appointment as Minister of Labour in 1966 by Seewoosagur Ramgoolam. He then led the MMM in its first electoral campaign and was presented as Prime Minister in 1976. The MMM won but could not govern due to a hung parliament and Jugnauth became Leader of the Opposition up to 1982, when the MMM-PSM alliance won all the seats. He became Prime Minister up to 1995. He was appointed again as Prime Minister in 2000 and finally President in 2003. He is the only prime minister to have had a sibling and his son in his own cabinet from 2000 to 2003.

Jugnauth was called to the Bar at the Lincoln's Inn. He was a cabinet minister during the leadership of Seewoosagur Ramgoolam from 1965 up to 1969. In 1970, he moved out and went to the newly created political party of the Mauritian Militant Movement, where he eventually became its leader in 1982. He created his own political party called Militant Socialist Movement in 1983 and was once more elected. His party remained in power up to 1995. In 2000, he was once more elected prime minister and served until 2003, when he was sworn into the presidency. From the beginning of his first mandate as Prime Minister he expressed his country's readiness to establish strong economic ties, particularly in creating technology-based projects with economic feasibility. Jugnauth established a set of economic policies, such as the revitalization of the duty-free trade zone and establishing Mauritius as a leader in textiles production, which allowed the island to develop an economic presence in the region.[4]

He founded the Militant Socialist Movement party in 1983.[5] He was honoured with Pravasi Bharatiya Samman Awards for his continued support for India's causes and concerns and for strengthening India's relationship with Mauritius. He was made Queen's Counsel in 1980 and was made a member of the Privy Council in 1983. He was knighted by Queen Elizabeth II in 1988 when Mauritius was still one of the Queen's realms and the Queen was titular head of state. Therefore, he still uses his formal title of Sir Anerood and also the prefix used by Privy Councillors, The Right Honourable. He is one of the last Mauritian Knights of the United Kingdom and is the last Mauritian to be member of the Privy Council.

Following his resignation as president on 30 March 2012 due to major disagreement with the members of the government,[6][7][8] he led the main opposition coalition MSM/MMM from 2012 to mid-2014.

In April 2014, however, Paul Berenger announced the dissolution of the coalition[9] due to major disagreement within both parties. Later Berenger announced a coalition between the Labour Party and the Mauritian Militant Movement. Jugnauth has since led a coalition composed of the Militant Socialist Movement, PMSD and the ML which is a break-away group of individuals who resigned from the MMM due to the coalition with the Labour Party. Jugnauth's alliance known as "L'Alliance LEPEP" won the 2014 general elections.

On 12 September 2016, Jugnauth announced that he would be resigning as Prime Minister very soon due to his advanced age. He confirmed that Pravind Jugnauth would eventually succeed him, being the leader of the Militant Socialist Movement.[10] On 23 January 2017, he eventually resigned as prime minister to make way for his son to become prime minister. Jugnauth was conferred with Padma Vibhushan by Government of India in 2020 for his contribution to the field of public affairs.[11]

Early career and education[edit]

Jugnauth was born at La Caverne, Vacoas Phoenix in a Hindu Ahir[12] family and was brought up there. His grandfather had migrated to Mauritius from the Indian state of Bihar in the 1850s.[13] Brought up in a Bhojpuri medium, he had his primary education at Palma Primary School, where he learned creole, and had his secondary education at Regent College. He taught for some time at New Eton College and later worked as a clerk in the Poor Law Department for some time before being transferred to the Judicial Department. In 1951, he left Mauritius for the UK to study law. In 1964, he was elected Chairman of the Palma Village Council. He was first elected to parliament as an Independent Forward Bloc candidate in the constituency of Rivière du Rempart District in 1963. He served as a magistrate shortly after his resignation in 1966. In 1969, he was promoted to the Crown Law Office. In 1971, he was made Senior Crown Counsel.[citation needed]

In the beginning of the 1970s, Jugnauth joined the Mauritian Militant Movement. He became the president and subsequently the leader of the party. Re-elected at the general election held in 1976 in the constituency of Piton/Rivière du Rempart, he served as Leader of the Opposition from December 1976 to June 1982.

Jugnauth trained and worked in law and took an active role in the 1960s negotiations for independence. He was called to the Bar in London in 1954. His political career began with his being elected in the Constituency of Rivière du Rempart in 1963. He was the President of the Palma Village council in 1964. He became Leader of Opposition from December 1976 to June 1982, and he joined the Mauritian Militant Movement in 1970.[citation needed]

Early politics[edit]

Jugnauth was elected for the first time to the Legislative Council in Constituency No. 14 of Riviere du Rempart at a time when there were 40 Constituencies in the island[14][15] in October 1963 and was candidate of the Independent Forward Bloc (IFB). He remained member of the Legislative Council up to August 1967 when general elections were held. He held the office of various ministries.

He joined the All Mauritius Hindu Congress in 1965 and served as State Minister for Development in the government of Seewoosagur Ramgoolam from 1965 to 1966. He was then promoted to Minister of Labour in November 1966. He took part in the London Constitutional Conference on Mauritius, also commonly known as the 1965 Lancaster Conference. He resigned from office in April 1967. In 1970 there was a political split between Independence Party and the All Mauritius Hindu Congress Party. Soon afterwards his party was dissolved. At the same time another party Comité d'Action Musulman (CAM) was also dissolved .[16][17]

1976 elections[edit]

The 1976 elections were contested by three of the largest political parties on the island. These were the Independence Party (Mauritius) (IP), an alliance of the Mauritian Labor Party, led by Seewoosagur Ramgoolam, and the Muslim Action Committee; Mauritian Social Democrat Party (PMSD) led by Gaëtan Duval; and the Mauritian Militant Movement (MMM) led by Paul Bérenger and Anerood Jugnauth himself. About 460 100 voters of the 0.8 million inhabitants of Mauritius registered, and 88% (404 918) of them actually voted. The election was closely fought, and no party was able to gain a majority of parliamentary seats (see 1976 Legislative Assembly election results). The MMM received most votes, 38.64%, but gained only 34 seats, two short of an absolute majority. The Independence Party (MLP and CAM) gained 37.90% and 28 seats, while the PMSD received 16.20% of the votes and eight seats. By once more forming a coalition with the PMSD, Ramgoolam managed to stay in power, but with a majority of only two seats in the Assembly.[18]

Sir Seewoosagur Ramgoolam ruled over the house of parliament with only two seats over the others. The Independence Alliance occupied 36 seats while MMM became opposition with 34 seats. Jugnauth was appointed as Leader of the Opposition and he remained in the position until the next general elections in 1982.[19]

1982 elections and first tenure as prime minister[edit]

From 1976 to 1982, the MLP had been weakened by the defection of part of its coalition partner, the PMSD, while the CAM declined to contest the election. The MMM had formed an alliance with Harish Boodhoo's Parti Socialiste Mauricien known as PSM. The election resulted in a landslide victory for the MMM-PSM alliance (formed by Jugnauth and Berenger in early 1981), which won 64.16% of the vote and all 60 elected seats (42 by the MMM, 18 by the PSM, and two for the allied Organisation du Peuple Rodriguais) (for more detail see 1982 Legislative Assembly election results). Voter turn-out was 87.3%, with 471 196 out of an electorate of 540 000 casting their votes for the 34 parties contesting 62 seats. The LP, which had dominated Mauritian politics since 1948, won no seats and (together with the Muslim Action Committee) only 25.78% of the vote. The PMSD did even worse, receiving only 7.79% of the vote. The LP and the PMSD each did eventually receive two seats in parliament under the best-loser provisions.

Jugnauth became Prime Minister for the first time, Boodhoo Deputy Prime Minister, and Paul Bérenger Minister of Finance.[20] Jugnauth being Prime Minister announced general elections in 1983 again. This time he was not a Candidate for the MMM but he proposed to Boodhoo of dissolving the PSM to make a new more stronger Party called the MSM (Militant Socialist Movement). He created the MSM and in Alliance with the Mauritian Labour Party went to the general elections together trying to fight against [Berenger and his MMM. In March 1983, the government collapsed when the dominant faction within the MMM [Mouvement Militant Mauricien], led by Bérenger, split from Jugnauth's leadership and resigned from the cabinet.

1983 and second tenure as prime minister[edit]

In early April 1983, Jugnauth formed a new party, the Mouvement Socialiste Militant (MSM), which, in May, amalgamated with the PSM led by Boodhoo, and was renamed the Militant Socialist Movement (MSM). However, the new government lacked a majority in the legislative assembly, and Jugnauth was obliged to dissolve the assembly in June. New elections were set for August 1983. Re-elected at the general elections held on 23 August 1983, Jugnauth was re-elected as prime minister The MMM fought the election alone. Jugnauth's MSM formed a new coalition – called the Alliance – with the Labour Party and the PMSD [Parti Mauricien Social Démocrate], the very parties that only a year ago had been ousted from power by the MMM, which was then led by Jugnauth.[citation needed]

The MMM received 209 845 votes (46.4%) – the highest proportion of the vote ever received by a single party in any Mauritian election. The Alliance received 236 146 votes (52.22%); independents and the Rodrigues parties got the remaining 1.38% and two seats. Of the 552 800 registered voters, 452 221 (81.8%) had voted. When seats were distributed, however, the Alliance held a majority – 46 to the 22 received by the MMM. The disproportionate weighting of seats reflects the fact that MMM votes were concentrated in urban constituencies where large numerical majorities won only three seats, whereas the Alliance swept the rural constituencies where Hindus predominated.

1987 and third tenure[edit]

Within months of taking office, the Alliance began a process of fragmentation that by 1986 left the government without a working majority in parliament. When in February 1984, the MLP (Mauritius Labour Party) left the government, 11 of its MPs continued to support the government and formed a faction within the MLP called the Rassemblement des Travaillistes Mauriciens (RTM). Upon proroguing parliament in November 1986, Jugnauth agreed that an election was necessary.

Parliament was dissolved on 3 July, and the election date set for 30 August 1987, one year ahead of schedule. Campaigning started on 22 July 1987. Jugnauth's Alliance fought the election with his MSM (Militant Socialist Movement), Duval's MPSD (Parti Mauricien Social Démocrate), and both major factions of the MLP, the one led by Satcam Boolell and the RTM. The MMM allied itself with two small parties, the Mouvement Travailliste Démocrat (RTD) and the Front des Travailleurs Socialiste (FTS). A total of 639 488 voters were registered (approximately 60% of the total population) and of these, 546 623 (85.5%) cast their votes. A total of 359 candidates ran for the 62 elected seats. During the election campaign, the ruling MSM/MLP/PMSD alliance was known as the Sun (Soleil) and the opposing union (composed of MMM/MTD/FTS) as the Heart (Coeur) after their respective emblems.[citation needed]

While overall participation of voters in the polling amounted to 85.5%, it ran up to 93% in some constituencies. The average size of the multimember constituencies was around 30 000. As in previous elections, the MMM and its partners received the highest percentage of votes, 48.12%, of which a small percentage can be attributed to its two small partners (see 1987 Legislative Assembly election results for more detail). It won 21 seats, comprising 19 of the 30 urban seats, and only two of the 30 rural seats. The Alliance (MSM/PMSD/MLP) won a total of 49.86% and 39 seats. After the best-loser seats were allocated, the Alliance held 46 seats to the MMM's 24. The two seats of the Organisation du Peuple Rodriguais helped to raise those of the Alliance to 46.

The MSM had drawn its main support from the Hindu community (52% of the total population), particularly from the numerically dominant Vaishya caste, which included Jugnauth among its members. The MSM was also favoured by the economically dominant Chinese and Franco-Mauritian communities. The MMM's support was concentrated in the Muslim Indian community (17% of the total population), in sections of the Creole community (27%) and in the lower Hindu castes, particularly those of southern Mauritius disaffected with Vaishya dominance in the north. Of the smaller ruling parties, the MLP also represented higher-caste Hindus, while the PMSD was strong in the Creole community. Jugnauth was once more elected with a majority in the Parliament and was once more elected as Prime Minister and took office for his 3rd term.[21]

1991 and fourth tenure[edit]

On 6 August 1991, Jugnauth dissolved the national assembly and announced that a general election would be held on 15 September, nearly a year early. Jugnauth led an alliance of his MSM (Militant Socialist Movement) with the MMM (Mauritian Militant Movement) and the RTD (Rassemblement des Travaillistes Mauriciens) against an alliance of the MLP (Mauritius Labour Party) and the PMSD (Parti Mauricien Social Démocrate). The MSM/MMM/RTD alliance was better prepared than the opposition. Before the election date had been announced, it had already drawn up its list of candidates for the 20 constituencies and published its election manifesto. The opposition lost valuable time with lengthy negotiations concerning candidates and manifesto. Some 25 parties and independents and 331 candidates were involved. According to official figures, 682,000 voters (about 63% of the total population of 1,083,000) were entitled to vote, and of these about 576,300 (84.5%) turned out. The government alliance's 56.3% of the vote gave it 57 seats in parliament, while the opposition's 39.9% of the vote gave it only three seats. Only four best-loser seats were allocated. Jugnauth once more ruled in Parliament House for a fourth term, and was once more elected prime minister.[22]

1995 and onwards[edit]

When Jugnauth lost a vote of confidence over a language issue that required an amendment to the constitution, he dissolved parliament on 16 November 1995 and called a snap election for 20 December. Candidates had to be nominated by 4 December, and the campaign was officially opened on 5 December. A record 506 candidates entered the fray in which some 42 parties and independents participated. A landslide victory for the opposition ended Jugnauth's rule as prime minister which had lasted since 1982. The Labour Party-Mauritian Militant Movement (MMM) alliance captured all 60 of the directly elected seats on the island of Mauritius with only 63.7% of the poll, representing a mere 51.1% of the total electorate. The two seats on the island of Rodrigues went to l'Organisation du Peuple de Rodrigues (OPR). The MSM-RMM alliance obtained 19.3% of the votes cast or the support of 15.4% of the total electorate, but even under the best-loser system it found itself without a single seat in the National Assembly. (Renouveau Militant Mauricien (RMM) was the name adopted by a substantial part of the MMM led by Dr. Prem Nababsing after Bérenger had broken away from it in 1993 and retained the right to the name of MMM).[citation needed]

Only four best-loser seats were allocated and went to small parties with little national influence – two to the Mouvement Ridriguais in Rodrigues island and the other two respectively to the Hizbullah Party and the Parti Gaëtan Duval (PGD, formerly the PMSD). Jugnauth stood as a candidate at the by-election held in constituency No. 9 (Flacq/Bon Acceuil) in April 1998 but was defeated. He immediately initiated the idea of an MSM/MMM federation which eventually took shape in January 1999. The Federation was dissolved, however, after the defeat of its candidate at the by-election held on 19 September 1999.[citation needed]

Jugnauth founded the MSM/MMM Alliance with Bérenger, leader of the MMM, on 14 August 2000, based on equal sharing of power. At the general elections held on 11 September 2000, he was elected as first member of constituency No 7 (Piton/Rivière du Rempart) and was appointed as Prime Minister.[23]

2000 and tenure as prime minister[edit]

The outgoing prime minister, Navin Ramgoolam of the Mauritian Labor Party led a coalition with Xavier Luc Duval, the leader of the Parti Mauricien Xavier Duval (PMXD). Duval was Minister of Finance in the previous government alliance formed in mid-1999. The other alliance was formed (for the fourth time) between Jugnauth (MSM) and Bérenger (MMM).

On 15 August 2000, the leaders of these two parties as well several other leaders from much smaller parties signed what they termed a 'historical electoral accord', which included a proposed sharing of the prime ministerial post between MSM leader Jugnauth and MMM leader Bérenger. Under this arrangement, Jugnauth would hold the post of prime minister for the first three years and Bérenger for the remaining two years. After surrendering the premiership to Bérenger, Jugnauth would be called to assume the function of President of the Republic after reforms to strengthen the presidency, which was largely a symbolic post. The accord also provided for a reform of the electoral system to replace the "best losers system" gradually by proportional representation, and to end the Mauritius Broadcasting Corporation's monopoly over the electronic media.

In addition to sharing the post of prime minister, what made the MSM/MMM electoral accord exceptional was the fact that it would allow, for the first time in the history of the island, a non-Hindu Mauritian to become the prime minister. The elections took place on 11 September 2000 with a total of 80.87% of registered voters casting their ballots. The MSM/MMM alliance won 54 of the directly elected seats.[24][citation needed]

Jugnauth agreed to step down and become president as from 2003. Former president Karl Offmann was also of the game. He was put to the office of the president with the condition that he would remain president only for 19 months.[25] Jugnauth became president under the transition with the so-called "sudden" resignation of President Offmann.[26]

Jugnauth resigned as prime minister on 30 September 2003 at 13:30 and also as member of parliament at 15:00, giving his resignation letter to Speaker of the House on the same day. He announced his departure in a 20-minute speech given to the members of parliament stating that he was leaving the office to make room for a new prime minister.

"Everything said and done about me, I am proud to go down in history as a no-nonsense, honest and dedicated prime minister having done my duty in good faith and without fear or favour. I have understood our political adversaries and, taken at its most, all divergent views and attitudes have been mere manifestations to our democracy at its best", said Jugnauth in the speech before his departure.[27]

He was sworn into the presidency on 7 October 2003 following the resignation of President Karl Offmann.

First presidential mandate (2003–2008)[edit]

Jugnauth, along with Lady Jugnauth, took over the keys of the Chateau of Reduit on 7 October 2003. His election to the presidency was largely approved by the entire population as it was considered to be the new era of Mauritian politics, allowing Paul Berenger to become prime minister who was the first person of a non-Hindu religion to become head of government.[28]

In 2003, he handed the leadership of his party to his son Pravind Jugnauth. He announced that he had "reached the end of this road". During his first mandate, due to the constitution, he had to announce general elections, which eventually took place in July 2005. The new prime minister elected Navin Ramgoolam, called him "a sitting duck" who is still yearning for power. He remained president until the end of his 5-year term, ending in 2008.[29]

Second presidential mandate (2008–2012)[edit]

Due to the end of the mandate of Jugnauth, two persons, Vice President (Angidi Chettiar) and himself were the two persons nominated to the Presidency. He was voted for by both governing members of parliament as well as opposition MPs. Jugnauth was elected to the ceremonial post of President in 2003. After five years in office, he was re-elected by the National Assembly in a unanimous vote on 19 September 2008, supported by both the government and the opposition.[30]


Parliament voted for Jugnauth to remain as President for a second term in 2008. Shortly after, during the by-election of 2008 in constituency No 8, the Militant Socialist Movement won with the support of the Labour Party and Pravind Jugnauth returned as MP for that constituency.

In 2010, two days after his 80th birthday, the Labour-MSM-PMSD alliance was made and Navin Ramgoolam dissolved the parliament in respect for general elections. The alliance won the election and the MSM returned 13 Mps. However, in August 2011, the alliance broke and the MSM left the government leaving a very small majority for the Prime Minister. After having a private meeting with Berenger, the leader of the opposition, Jugnauth made a statement that he might resign as president if the situation got any worse concerning the Medpoint scandale which involved his son, Pravind, and who was summoned and arrested by the Independent Commission Against Corruption on conflict of interest. Eventually he resigned as president on 30 March 2012. He mentioned that he did not support government policies, many thought his disagreement stemmed from the fact that the government refused to help his son, accused of corruption, escape from the law. He stated that he resigned because of his disagreement with the members of the government.[6][7][8]


Soon after his resignation from the Presidency in 2012, Berenger proposed a 'remake' of the MSM/MMM coalition, which was approved by both parties' structures (political bureaus and central committees). Jugnauth became leader of the alliance with the same conditions. He would hold office of Prime Minister for three years before resigning to make way for Berenger. Following internal crisis between both parties in 2013 and early 2014, Berenger announced two 'cooling off' periods to allow time to resolve these issues. Berenger announced the end of the MSM/MMM in April 2014. He was criticized as he had (on the eve) attended Jugnauth's birthday party and gave a very flattering speech on his political career. After the party, he went in the same night to meet Ramgoolam at a nearby restaurant to discuss a forthcoming alliance. He further announced an alliance between his MMM and Ramgoolam's labour Party.

General elections (2014)[edit]

Jugnauth in 2014

When Ramgoolam dissolved parliament in end of November 2014, Jugnauth and the MSM conducted an alliance with the PMSD and Mouvement Liberateur (a dissident MMM party led by its former Deputy Leader, Ivan Collendaveloo). His alliance won 47 out of the 60 seats contested. Jugnauth became prime minister for the sixth time and made history as he led an alliance that won against a Labour Party-MMM alliance, which are considered as the two biggest parties (through their significant electorates) in the country. The MSM which was lost much of its rural electorate was since Jugnauth retirement is considered as the third national party. It nevertheless got its core electorate (from the 1980s) back following its appeal to vote for Jugnauth for a last time as he announced it would be the last election he would contest due to his advanced age.


Jugnauth has been subjected to various controversy over his 35 years of being on the front bench of Mauritian politics. In 1983, he was criticized for breaking the MMM-PSM coalition government and ousting the MMM from power. In 1984, he was criticized as head of government in the Amsterdam boys scandal which involved 4 government MPs who were arrested as they were carrying drugs from the Netherlands. He prorogued parliament in an objective to prevent any questions on the investigation.[31] In 1988, he fired Satcam Boollell, then leader of the Labour Party, due to political disagreements.

In May 1992, a scandal erupted when the Bank of Mauritius issued a new Rs 20 note having the portrait of Sarojini Jugnauth. It was considered to be a birthday gift from Anerood to his wife. This was a major controversy whereby Jugnauth himself had to apologise in parliament to a private notice question from the opposition. He confirmed that he had reluctantly agreed to the proposal of the Bank of Mauritius to issue such a note. He expressed his sincere apologies and assured the population that he shall not commit such a mistake in the future.[32]

In 1995, months before the general elections which Jugnauth would lose, the then government gave a contract to Sun Trust Building (owned by the Jugnauth family) for a period of 10 years. This was controversial as Jugnauth was the owner of the Building and at the same time was prime minister. The newly elected Labour Party-MMM government decided to rescind the contract. Jugnauth sued for damages and received Rs 45 million (US$1.5 million) as compensation. This was criticized in the press and among the Mauritian diaspora.[33]

Assassination attempts[edit]

There have been two attempts to murder Jugnauth whilst he held office. The first one was on 6 November 1988 at an Arya Samaj gathering in the suburb of Trèfles, Rose Hill by Satanand Sembhoo who drew a pistol to Jugnauth's head before being disarmed by bodyguards and onlookers.[34] This was followed by a second attempt on 3 March 1989 at a temple in Ganga Talao when armed with a razor blade and disguised as a Hindu pilgrim Iqbal Ghani assaulted Jugnauth.[35] Both attempts were believed to be the result of drug cartels, against whom Jugnauth was leading a crack-down.[36]


Jugnauth is the owner of a building company on Mauritius, located at the Sun Trust Building situated at La Rue Edith Cavell, Port Louis. This building was the subject of controversies and critics as the owner leased its floor space at high prices which were achieved at the peak of the local property market's cycle. The Government's Ministry of Education department was a tenant of the Sun Trust Building until 1995 when newly elected Minister, James Burty-David, refused to use that building. The government then relocated the department into another building. The penalty paid to Jugnauth in terms of breach of contract amounted to Rs 45 million (US$1.5 million).[37]

Family life[edit]

He is the patriarch of the Jugnauth Family of Mauritius. Jugnauth married Sarojini Ballah on 18 December 1957, and he is the father of two children: Pravind and Shalini Jugnauth-Malhotra. Pravind has been Prime Minister of Mauritius since 2017 and was previously Minister of Finance as a Member of Parliament for the Constituency Moka & Quartier Militaire. Pravind is also the leader of the Mouvement Socialiste Militant (MSM).

Threats on Diego Garcia[edit]

In 2007, Jugnauth threatened to leave the Commonwealth in protest at the UK's "barbarous" treatment of the people of the Chagos Islands. Jugnauth stated that he might take the United Kingdom to the International Court of Justice over the islanders' plight. The Chagos Islands, a British colony in the Indian Ocean, were leased to the US in the 1960s to build a military base. The residents were forced out, and the government says they cannot return, but have been granted Britishcitizenship. Many of the residents now live in poverty in Mauritius, or as refugees in Britain. The American base was built on the large island of Diego Garcia within the Chagos archipelago. Mauritius claims the islands as part of its territory, and Jugnauth claimed his country was forced by the British to accept the Chagossians as a condition for independence.[38]

Titles and styles[edit]

Presidential styles of
Anerood Jugnauth
2003 to 2012
Presidential seal
Reference styleHis Excellency, The Right Honourable Sir Anerood Jugnauth, President of the Republic of Mauritius
Spoken stylePresident Jugnauth
Alternative styleMr. President

Jugnauth will bear the title Right Honourable for life. He is also entitled to use MP post-nominal and prefix, as he was an MP for more than 35 years.

Title Suffix Years
Anerood Jugnauth (1930–1963)
The Honourable Anerood Jugnauth MP (1976–1980)
The Honourable Anerood Jugnauth QC, MP (1980–1983)
The Right Honourable Anerood Jugnauth QC, MP, PC (1983–1988)
The Right Honourable Sir Anerood Jugnauth KCMG, QC, MP, PC (1988–2003)
His Excellency The Right Honourable Sir Anerood Jugnauth GCSK, KCMG, QC, PC (2003–2012)
The Right Honourable Sir Anerood Jugnauth GCSK, KCMG, QC, PC (2012–2014)
The Right Honourable Sir Anerood Jugnauth GCSK, KCMG, QC, MP, PC (2014 – Present)


Jugnauth is one of the only two Prime Ministers who served under Queen Elizabeth II and the pre-republic regime. There is one primary school in his former constituency, Riviere du Rempart under his name, known as Sir Anderood Jugnauth Government School,[41] situated in the north of the country.

He has also a commemorative golden Mauritian rupee coin issued by the Bank of Mauritius having his portrait on the obverse and a Dodo on the reverse. The inscriptions are "THE Rt HON SIR ANEROOD JUGNAUTH PC, QC, KCMG " and is followed by "MAURITIUS". It originally holds a value of Rs 1,000 but is sold as a collection piece at US$1,881. On 19 December 2010, he and his wife, Sarojini Ballah went to receive an official opening of a pictorial biography of the President himself showing his path from small age poor child to him being President of Mauritius in 2010 leaving behind him a rich career as one of the leaders of the country. The biography is entitled The Rise of a Common Man. Present at the ceremony were former Prime Minister Navin Ramgoolam, Vice Prime Minister Pravind Jugnauth and other ministers as well as friends of the latter.[42]


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External links[edit]

Political offices
Preceded by
Sookdeo Bissoundoyal
Leader of the Opposition
Succeeded by
Gaetan Duval
Preceded by
Seewoosagur Ramgoolam
Prime Minister of Mauritius
Succeeded by
Navin Ramgoolam
Preceded by
Navin Ramgoolam
Prime Minister of Mauritius
Succeeded by
Paul Bérenger
Preceded by
Karl Offmann
President of Mauritius
Succeeded by
Monique Ohsan Bellepeau
Preceded by
Navin Ramgoolam
Prime Minister of Mauritius
Succeeded by
Pravind Jugnauth