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First woman sec-gen of Commonwealth

VALETTA, Malta: Baroness Patricia Scotland has been elected as the first woman secretary-general of the Commonwealth.

The 60-year-old Dominican born, who is a former Attorney-General of the United Kingdom was voted to the post during a special session attended by heads of government in the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM) here today.

Scotland was among two women who were vying for the post, which is a first in Commonwealth history. She defeated Masire-Mwamba from Botswana and Sir Ronald Sanders from Antigua and Barbuda.

Scotland will officially take office starting April 1 next year, taking over the position from Kamalesh Sharma, whose two-term tenure ends on March 31 next year.

Scotland told the daily, Times of Malta that she would pick up from where Kamalesh had done in terms of striving for freedom and human rights of the Commonwealth nations.

“I want to put the wealth back in the Commonwealth so as to ensure all our citizens have the opportunity to achieve their dreams,” she said.

-New Straits Times

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