Updated on:


Serge Clair, born Louis Serge Clair on April 1, 1940, in Corail, Rodrigues, is a celebrated political figure known for his charismatic and visionary leadership [2][5][7]. His early life was marked by modest beginnings within a Creole family in Rodrigues. At the tender age of seven, he moved to Mauritius, expanding his experiences beyond his childhood island [2].

Serge Clair’s educational journey led him to France in 1960, before he traveled to Australia to further his studies [2][5][7]. These formative years, spent away from home, seemed to cement his interest in politics, a path he chose to pursue passionately in the 1960s, abandoning his priesthood [2][5][7].

Upon his return to Mauritius in 1966, Clair’s political ambitions began to materialize, bolstered by his charisma and revolutionary spirit. He was known to host provocative radio broadcasts during this time [2]. His most significant political contribution came in 1976 when he founded the Rodrigues People’s Organization (OPR), which campaigned for autonomy, as opposed to the Rodrigues Movement (MR) that leaned more towards federalism [2].

In the ensuing years, Clair’s political influence grew, leading to his election as a member of the National Assembly during the legislative elections of 1982. He was subsequently re-elected several times until 2002 when he chose to resign from his seat [2]. This decision was motivated by his desire to participate in the regional elections of Rodrigues, which had gained autonomy in 2002 and established its own regional assembly [2][5][7].

Despite his defeat in the regional elections held on September 29, 2002, in the region of La Ferme, Clair’s political journey was far from over. On February 4, 2003, he was appointed Chief Commissioner of Rodrigues, a position he held until his resignation on August 4, 2006 [2][5].

The OPR, under Clair’s leadership, tasted victory in the regional elections of February 2012, which resulted in Clair’s reappointment as Chief Commissioner of Rodrigues. He retained his post following the February 2017 elections until March 2022, when the opposition to the OPR emerged victorious, forming the new autonomous government [2][5].

As of 2023, Serge Clair’s legacy remains etched in

the political landscape of Rodrigues, a testament to his relentless dedication to the island’s autonomy and the welfare of its people [2][5][7].