APPOINTMENTS Commonwealth Gets New Secretary General


Patricia Scotland has taken over as the new Secretary general of the Commonwealth, succeeding senior Indian diplomat Kamalesh Sharma, who stepped down after two four-year terms on March 31. Scotland said her priorities will include tackling violence against women, climate change, boosting trade and governance, and creating better opportunities for young people. Nominated for the post by Dominica, she is the first woman to hold the post.

Nguyen Xuan Phuc

Vietnamese Parliament on April 7, 2016 elected Phuc as the communist country’s new PM. In a formal vote, 446 of the 490 members of the National Assembly voted to appoint Phuc, 61, as the next head of government.

Phuc, who rose from governor of the central province of Quang Nam to deputy prime minister five years ago, was the only candidate nominated for the position by party officials.

He takes over from Nguyen Tan Dung, a reformist, at a time of soaring public debt, a worrying budget deficit and China’s growing assertiveness in the nearby South China Sea.

Ram Bahadur Rai

The government on April 14, 2016 reconstituted the Indira Gandhi National Centre for the Arts (IGNCA), appointing senior journalist Ram Bahadur Rai as its President.

Rai former news editor of Hindi daily Jansatta,

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