Dr. Bari, Secretary-General of the Muslim Council of Britain, says diversity is the Commonwealth’s strength19th January 2010 by ZoeWare No Comments
Dr. Muhammad Abdul Bari, Secretary General of the Muslim Council of Britain, talks about what the Commonwealth means to him and how its values of diversity and tolerance are an immense assest.
The post is written by Sir Peter Marshall, a former Deputy Secretary-General of the Commonwealth.
I would be hard put to say precisely most attracts me about the Commonwealth. But if forced to make a choice, I think I would opt for its chemistry – the way in which people treat one another, a sublime blend of maturity, tolerance, respect, responsibility, commitment and warmth – a recognition of our mutual affinities as well as our common values and interests.
This critique of ‘the Commonwealth family’ is written by a young African member of a Commonwealth civil society organisation.
The inter-governmental Commonwealth works in many of its member states and assists them in election observation, peace building and technical assistance. There are also so called Commonwealth ‘civil society’ organisations in almost every country.
Despite these connections and good works, there are still many people that do not know anything about the Commonwealth, suggesting that there is much room and need for the organisation and its work to be highlighted.
Title: Does the Commonwealth Have a Future?
Description: On Wednesday, November 18, at 8 p.m., at the Royal United Services Institute of Regina, the Royal Commonwealth Society and the Canadian International Council present the Honourable Don Toth, Speaker of the Legislative Assembly, and Greg Putz, Clerk of the Assembly.
Their topic will be: “Does the Commonwealth Have a Future? The Commonwealth as seen through the 2009 conference of the Commonwealth Parliamentary Association in September 2009 in Tanzania.”
Glenys Kinnock is Britain’s Minister of State with responsibility for Africa, the United Nations, human rights, the Commonwealth, the Caribbean and Central America, and climate change. She responded to Doug Saunders recent negative portrayal of the Commonwealth in Canada’s Globe & Mail.
“With the Commonwealth heads-of-government meeting in Port of Spain three weeks away, the debate continues about whether the Commonwealth has a future. At 60 years old, there are some who take the view that it is irrelevant – or, worse, drawing its last breath.
It is absolutely right that we should debate the Commonwealth’s future. But as someone who has spent my political life working to promote democratic freedoms, human rights and poverty eradication, I know where I stand: I believe the association will not only survive but has to thrive for the next 60 years and beyond.”
As part of the Commonwealth Conversation, Dame Kelly Holmes, President of Commonwealth Games England, talked to the RCS about what the Commonwealth means to her.
This article, ‘I wasn’t old enough to even think of throwing an egg at the Queen’ was written by Emily Perkins, a New Zealand writer. The full version appeared in the Guardian on 19 July 2002.
The word “Commonwealth” instantly conjures an image of a dusty, baking-hot classroom, last period on a Friday before the end of term, and a teacher in a beard, walking shorts and thick knee-length socks, pointing out a map which is still, essentially, a map of Empire, only now it has a different name. Thirty schoolchildren look on, none of them listening, all of them dying to get out and go for a swim and then hang around outside McDonald’s in the mall. The map is vast, and New Zealand, as ever, is right at the bottom of the world.
Being a member of the Commonwealth always seemed, to be honest, a bit like being in Enid Blyton’s Secret Seven, when the really big kids were in the Famous Five. There was some thing wussy about it – not simply the lack of American grunt, but a quality of innocence and inexperience based on still being tied to Mummy Britannia’s apron strings, being part of a disparate family who neither shared wealth nor had much in common other than former-colony status.