Kuala Lumpur – Former Malaysian High Commissioner to Australia Datuk Sudha Devi KR Vasudevan has been appointed Chair of the Commonwealth Foundation for a two-year term starting Jan 1 next year.
Wisma Putra in a statement today said the decision was reached during the Extraordinary Meeting of the Commonwealth Foundation Board of Governors, held virtually on Oct 28 in London, United Kingdom.
“The Commonwealth Heads of Government on Dec 7 endorsed that Malaysia received the most votes during the election, defeating candidates from Cameroon, Kenya and Papua New Guinea.
“Sudha Devi’s appointment is very historic as she will be the first Malaysian and also the first chair from the Asian region since the foundation was established in 1966,” said the statement.
Prior to this, Sudha Devi was also Ambassador of Malaysia to the Federative Republic of Brazil and had held diplomatic positions in Germany, Singapore and Switzerland.
She had served as director-general of the Department of Policy Planning and Coordination, undersecretary for the East Asia Division and deputy director-general for the ASEAN-Malaysia National Secretariat while in the Foreign Ministry.
The Commonwealth Foundation was established to encourage people’s participation in all aspects of public dialogue to exchange views and act together in building democratic societies.
It also plays a role in ensuring that government institutions are more effective contributors to development through the influence of civic voices.
As the Foundation’s Chair, Sudha Devi will preside over meetings of its Board of Governors, represent the Foundation at intergovernmental meetings and events, and serve as an ambassador for the Commonwealth Foundation to promote the Foundation’s vision and values.
In thanking Commonwealth Foundation member countries for their support in appointing Sudha Devi, Malaysia expressed its commitment in supporting the work of the Foundation in achieving its vision and goals and in affirming its role as a voice for the citizens of the Commonwealth. – Bernama