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The Commonwealth Diplomatic Reception was held in the Jubilee Room at Westminster Hall. Organized by the Conservative Friends of the Commonwealth (CFOC), the event brought together diplomats and politicians from all over the Commonwealth to discuss important issues and strengthen relationships.

 

The reception provided a platform for open dialogue and mutual understanding between Commonwealth countries. Attendees discussed a range of topics, including trade, investment, and cultural exchange. The importance of cooperation and collaboration in tackling global challenges such as climate change and economic inequality was also emphasized.

 

Among the attendees was the Malawi High Commissioner to the United Kingdom, Dr. Thomas Bisika. He spoke passionately about the need for closer ties between Commonwealth countries. He highlighted the many opportunities for partnership and collaboration that exist within the Commonwealth, and encouraged attendees to explore these opportunities further.

 

The event was also attended by members of the CFOC, who spoke about their organization's mission to promote trade, investment, and cultural exchange between Commonwealth countries. They emphasized the importance of building strong relationships between Commonwealth countries in order to achieve shared goals and objectives.

 

In conclusion, the Commonwealth Diplomatic Reception was a truly inspiring event. It brought together diplomats and politicians from all over the Commonwealth to discuss important issues and strengthen relationships. The event showcased the many opportunities for cooperation and collaboration that exist within the Commonwealth, and provided a platform for important discussions and relationship building. #Commonwealth #CFOC #WestminsterHall

 

Ben Delo Opening Remarks 

 

On Thursday, May 11th, 2023, the Malawi High Commissioner to the United Kingdom, Dr. Thomas Bisika attended the launch of the Ben Delo Scholarship for Civil Servants.

The Ben Delo Scholarship for Civil Servants is a new programme that aims to provide mid-career civil servants of Commonwealth member states with the opportunity to study online short courses at the International School for Government at King’s College London. The programme is funded by British entrepreneur, mathematician and philanthropist Ben Delo, who believes that the Commonwealth is an increasingly important international network that strengthens connections, shares knowledge and skills, and spreads prosperity.

The programme offers civil servants from across the Commonwealth the chance to study from the diverse curriculum of post-graduate level, online, four-week short courses, all designed to build impact and effectiveness across policymaking and good governance. The courses blend academic rigour and practical application to equip Commonwealth civil servants with the skills they need to optimise their professional impact and effectiveness, and advance in their careers. Each course has been developed by leading academics in partnership with digital entrepreneurs, politicians, policymakers, design experts and other practitioners.

 

The programme aims to support as many as 100 students in the 2023 calendar year. In order to be eligible, candidates must be civil servants of Commonwealth countries (which includes British Overseas Territories) and have at least three years’ relevant work experience.

The Ben Delo Scholarship for Civil Servants is a testament to Ben Delo’s vision and generosity, as well as King’s College London’s commitment to providing opportunities for talented and motivated individuals to gain the knowledge and skills required to advance in their careers. The programme is expected to have a positive impact on the development and career prospects of some of the Commonwealth’s most promising public sector professionals, as well as on the quality and effectiveness of public policies and services in their respective countries.

Amongst the invited dignitaries was Her Excellency Kisha Abba Grant, High Commissioner for Grenada and Ms Janet Charles, Acting High Commissioner for Dominica. Rt Hon Patricia Scotland KC, Secretary General of the Commonwealth was the Guest of Honour.

The Scottish Government, in response to the impact of the Tropical Storm Ana, has committed £400,000.00, towards the Emergency Appeal set up by the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC). This funding will contribute to a package of support to help hundreds of thousands of people in Malawi who have been displaced because of severe flooding as a result of Tropical Storm Ana. 

The Scottish Government has also committed to do proactive communications to help draw attention to the ongoing humanitarian situation from Malawi floods.

In addition, a letter has been issued from Minister for Culture, Europe and International Development to the Scottish Parliament’s Constitution, Europe, External Affairs and Culture Committee:  International development programme: letter from Minister for Culture, Europe and International Development - gov.scot (www.gov.scot) providing a response to the Committee on its recent question to the Scottish Government on how it will continue to support the growth of small grass-roots initiatives in Scotland on international development. Through this letter, the Minister also highlights to the Committee the Scottish Government response and support to Tropical Storm Ana and the flooding in Malawi’s southern province.

 

 

 

 

 

 

On 3rd March, 2022, His Excellency Dr. Thomas John Bisika, accompanied by his wife, attended the Credentials Presentation Ceremony at Buckingham Palace and presented his credentials to Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II, virtually. Following the presentation of his credentials, the High Commissioner conveyed the message of goodwill to Her Majesty, the Government and the People of the United Kingdom, from the President of the Republic of Malawi, His Excellency Dr. Lazarus McCarthy Chakwera and the Government and the People of the Republic of Malawi.

Malawi and UK enjoy very cordial bilateral relations. A number of High-Level visits have been undertaken by both sides. Her Majesty made a State Visit to Malawi from 22nd to 25th July, 1975, which was later followed by a State Visit to the UK by the Late Hastings Kamuzu Banda, First President of the Republic of Malawi, from 16th to 19th April, 1985. Recently, His Excellency the President Dr. Lazarus McCarthy Chakwera, held bilateral talks with the Right Honourable Boris Johnson, Prime Minister of UK, along the sidelines of the Global Education Summit. The Malawi President also made a number of bilateral talks with Senior Officials from the UK Government along the sidelines of the Climate Summit COP-26, which was held in Scotland.

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