Angelique Pouponneau the Changemaker
The New African magazine publishes an annual listing of the 100 Most Influential Africans to celebrate Africanness. Seychelles’ environmental lawyer Angelique Pouponneau made it on the top 100 African Changemakers list. There are six categories: Leaders, Entrepreneurs, Changemakers, Opinion Shapers, Creatives and Sportspeople.
Angelique, who recently stepped down as chief executive of the Seychelles Conservation and Climate Adaptation Trust (SeyCCAT) to pursue her doctoral studies, began her environmental career when she co-founded the Small Islands Developing States (SIDS) Youth AIMS Hub Seychelles, an NGO dedicated to preserving the environment and promoting sustainable development. “I feel very proud and appreciate the recognition of my hard work and efforts,” said Angelique.
Angelique, whom Cosmocreole interviewed last year, has bigger goals-she said that her ultimate life goal is to one day become the secretary-general of an organisation like the Commonwealth or a UN ocean envoy.
“I like working with different countries and a multi-cultural environment and advocating for the things I am passionate about like climate change, small island developing states, ocean health, and social justice,” said Pouponneau.
Angelique has worked in different countries in the Caribbean, Pacific, and Indian Ocean on a wide range of environmental projects.
“The fact that the recognition relates to my work in climate change and as a climate negotiator is heartening. Climate negotiations are tough – I have to say it is always rewarding fighting for small island developing states,” she said.
In January, Angelique was appointed as one of 15 experts selected to sit on the Decade Advisory Board to assist UNESCO’s Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission (IOC) in coordinating the UN’s Ocean Decade 2021-2030.
She holds a master’s degree in environmental law, specialising in the law of the sea and natural resources law. She is also a trained climate change negotiator under the AOSIS Climate Change Fellowship Programme at the United Nations.
Angelique joins other well-known personalities on the list – Rwandan President Paul Kagame, African Fashion Foundation founder Roberta Annan, TikTok icon Khabane Lame, academy award-winning actress Lupita Nyong’o African footballer of 2021, Mohamed Salah.