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TO8FH Mayotte

TO8FH Team will be active from Mayotte, IOTA AF - 027, 10 - 22 October 2023.
Team - Members of the F6KOP Radio Club: F4AJQ, F5PBM, F6GCT, F4JCT, F5GSJ, F4WCU, F4LAF, IU0BMX, F6FJE, F1FUJ, F4JTL.
They will operate on HF Bands.
QSL via F5GSJ, ClubLog OQRS, LOTW.
QTH - Boueni.

TO8FH Mayotte News 10 October 2023

TO8FH Team start activity from Boueni, Mayotte.

Mayotte Island

Mayotte is a small island cluster in the Gulf of Mozambique, located roughly midway between Africa and the northern tip of the island of Madagascar. The island chain includes several small islets in addition to the main island of Maore, the largest of which is Pamansi. All of them are part of the Comoros archipelago, are territorially the property of France and since 2011 form a separate overseas department. The currency of Mayotte is Euro, besides the residents, having a local passport, nothing prevents them from travelling within the Schengen zone. It should be clarified that the political status of the territory is not so clear, as there are still disputes between the French and the Union of Comoros over it.

TO8FH Mayotte DX Pedition. Logo.

Highlights of the past

At the turn of the 16th century, the Arabs settled in the archipelago and turned it into a sultanate. In 1503, a colony was established on Mayotte by Portuguese adventurers. In 1832 the territory was first conquered by the Madagascar monarch and in 1833 it was transformed into the Sultanate of Mwali, which was succeeded by another sultanate, Ndzuwani. The period of French domination was marked by Mayotte receiving protectorate status in 1843. For a time as part of the Comoros Islands, it was considered a colony of France, and since 1946 the Comoros has been a French overseas territory. After a series of political events, Mayotte became a full-fledged French department by referendum in 2009, which was finally approved in 2011.

To Whom You Belong...

The flag of the department of Mayotte hints at the commitment to France, as it unambiguously reflects its tricolour symbolism, while the department's own flag is pure white, with a coat of arms. If you look at the enlarged coat of arms, you can see a philosophical inscription on it - "We are vigilant" - in the depth of the meaning of which everyone understands in his own way. The hegemony of French political traditions is also evident in the singing of the corresponding anthem, although according to the geographical affiliation it seems logical that the anthem of the Comoros should be sung.

Mayotte. Author - follc.

People and mores

The population of the islands is about 250,000, which is not a lot. However, the archipelago is ahead of other French departments in terms of population density. On average 657 people live on 1km2. The majority of the population speaks the Maori dialect of the Comorian language, but only 35% of the inhabitants speak French, and this despite the fact that French is the official language of the department. Interestingly, there are many people on the islands who do not know French at all, but they do not feel uncomfortable about it.

Far away, but no offence

There is an obvious financial dependence of the overseas administrative unit on France, which provides its subjects with social guarantees in the form of subsidies and benefits, especially for pensioners. Despite the subsidised budget, education on the islands is free, and most people are satisfied with the quality of health care.

It is no exaggeration to say that Mayotte is ten times more prosperous than its neighbours, who can only hope. Nowadays, not everyone visits the atoll as it used to be, as the French central authorities introduced a visa regime due to the influx of migrants from neighbouring islands and illegal attempts to overthrow the local administration in the mid-90s of the last century. Anyone detained for illegal stay in the territory faces trouble in the form of imprisonment in special places, the location of which is not publicised. It is known that the conditions of detention there are extremely harsh, which has been repeatedly drawn to the attention of EU representatives.

Mayotte. Author - Irene Levin.

The power of tradition

Alongside the powerful wagging of indigenous traditions on the lives of islanders, the French authorities have sought to somehow regularise the moral and ethical aspects of life by putting a lock on deeply rooted and previously considered natural ways of life. For example, since 1995, polygamy has not been allowed, and marriages are not allowed before the age of 18, as opposed to the previous 15. Judicial matters are the responsibility of the civil court, which not long ago replaced the authoritative Islamic Sharia law for the majority.

The strong influence of Islam is reflected in the fact that about 97 per cent of the inhabitants are Muslims and only 3 per cent are Catholics, so it is not surprising that namazes and restrictions on entertainment during Ramadan are a common practice and a cultural identity. However, such an order raises a number of questions among the younger generation in terms of the need for strict obedience to tradition, which is something that those who were brought up in the French way are more likely to think about.

No factories or steamships

There are no industrial enterprises on the archipelago, so the waters along the coast and the air are always in perfect condition. With a constant humidity of 85 per cent, the air is extremely comfortable to breathe. On the islands lying in the zone of dominance of the marine tropical climate, the transitional seasons are actually not pronounced, so only summer and winter are observed. During the conditional summer, which lasts from November to April, there is a lot of rain and sunshine with air temperatures up to 36℃. In winter, that is from May to October, when rainfall decreases dramatically, the air is slightly cooler with an average temperature of 24℃. In total, about 1100 mm of rain pours out of the sky in a year, and this is if we talk about the average. In fact, there are central and coastal areas that receive almost three times as much rainfall per year.

An undiscovered "treasure trove"

Despite the climatic colour, the tourist business in Mayotte does not "weather", the fault of which is the remoteness and infrastructural unsuitability. However, those who have visited these islands, got a portion of impressions 100%. Divers are presented with the underwater kingdom of corals and rare fish, among which is Latimeria - a relict species of kystepers, found only here. Those who can't imagine a holiday without a fishing rod are guaranteed a great fishing trip, while bird lovers can admire the beauty of several dozen species of exotic birds while walking on land.

TO8FH. Where is Mayotte located. Map.

TO8FH Mayotte. Sunrise 04-21-2024 at 03:04 GMT sunset at 14:51 GMT