Malaysia treasured as first Commonwealth nation to highlight climate change, says sec-gen

Commonwealth secretary-general Patricia Scotland (left) and MAIWP chief Datuk Seri Syed Hussien Alhabshee (2nd right) are seen at KLIA February 9, 2020. — Bernama pic
Commonwealth secretary-general Patricia Scotland (left) and MAIWP chief Datuk Seri Syed Hussien Alhabshee (2nd right) are seen at KLIA February 9, 2020. — Bernama pic

SEPANG, Feb 9 — Commonwealth secretary-general Patricia Scotland regards Malaysia as a treasured member of the Commonwealth which has made significant contributions.

“Malaysia is a treasured member of our family. So much has been contributed by Malaysia,” she told reporters upon her arrival at the Kuala Lumpur International Airport (KLIA) here today on a seven-day working visit until Feb 15.

She said the Commonwealth had greatly benefitted from the contributions made by Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad.

“You know that your prime minister was responsible for being one of the first to introduce performance management in the Commonwealth and we have greatly benefitted from that,” she added.

Scotland also recalled memories on Commonwealth meetings of great impact which have taken place in Malaysia in previous years.

Malaysia is where the Langkawi Declaration on Climate Change was first made in 1989 before the world was talking about the climate change, she said.

“(During that time) we here in Malaysia as the Commonwealth family told the world if we do not start to address it immediately it could cause a wide range of impacts with devastating consequences for planet Earth,” she added.

Scotland said, Malaysia was where the Commonwealth made the first declaration (on climate change) as a family to say that the world must change.

“And the Commonwealth lead the negotiations that went from Malta in 2015 and then to Paris where we (the Commonwealth) decided that we have to address this and the world followed us,” she said.

Scotland said now she looks forward to Malaysia’s constant support in the Commonwealth.

Her working visit to Malaysia this time was on the invitation of the Federal Territories Islamic Religious Council (MAIWP) which proposed to extend the understanding of the ‘Rahmatan Lil Alamin’ (Mercy To All Creations) concept to the world, especially to all the 54 Commonwealth countries.

Scotland leading a six-member delegation was welcomed at KLIA by MAIWP chairman Datuk Seri Syed Hussien Alhabshee.

During this visit, she is scheduled to make a courtesy call on Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad and attend a seminar on ‘Faith in the Commonwealth’ at the International Institute of Islamic Civilisation and the Malay World in Kuala Lumpur.

Scotland is the sixth secretary-general of the Commonwealth and the first woman to hold the post. — Bernama

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