Brunei has a significant role in Commonwealth

|     Danial Norjidi     |

BRUNEI Darussalam has a significant role in the Commonwealth, its Secretary-General Patricia Scotland said yesterday.

Speaking in an interview with the Bulletin, the Secretary-General shared, “The mutual respect and affection between the Commonwealth and Brunei are extraordinarily important.

“Brunei has been very generous in terms of the way in which it has reached out to our other members,” she said.

“It has shown real care and support for the small member states, and has been a very supportive member of the Commonwealth,” she added.

“We are working right now on the issues of connectivity. We were looking to see whether Brunei might be willing to take one of the leadership roles on connectivity.

“Brunei is doing a lot on digitalisation. These are skills which a number of our emerging democracies and developing countries are in need of,” continued the Secretary-General.

Commonwealth Secretary-General Patricia Scotland. – RAHWANI ZAHARI

“A number of countries are thinking ‘how do we modernise?’, ‘how do we develop in a way that delivers safety, security and parity of treatment?’ So, Brunei’s engagement in that has been very welcoming.”

She noted that Brunei has a very good history of being environmentally-friendly with a healthy production.

She also said that Brunei has made a significant contribution to the Queen’s Commonwealth Canopy, which she said “was very important”.

She also added, “I understand Brunei is also willing to continue to contribute to the third state programme to get more opportunities of scholarships for people from the Commonwealth to come to Brunei. This generosity is really welcome, and of course, much needed.”

The Secretary-General is in Brunei on her first official visit to the country, as part of an 11-day tour to three Commonwealth countries, including Sri Lanka and Bangladesh.