By HENRY OWINO

Commonwealth leaders from all 54 member states have issued a joint statement on the COVID-19 pandemic and steps that member states are taking to fight the pandemic and to work together in support of each other and broader global efforts.

Speaking on the release of the Statement, Secretary-General of the Commonwealth the Rt Hon Patricia Scotland, QC said the following.

“As the Coronavirus swept through the world spreading in ways we could not have imagined, the Commonwealth can be immensely proud of the way our leaders, governments and institutions have worked together to respond.

“And we should also be proud of the innovative partnerships and new approaches we have taken to protect our healthcare systems and the well-being of all our people – especially those who are most at risk.

“For many of our member states the combined social, health and economic impacts of this virus joined with the growing threat of climate change mean they are facing a fight for their very existence.

“But as we are all impacted by the global pandemic, we must all remain united against pandemic and ensure that the legacy left after its devastating course has run should be one of peace, prosperity and development.

“This is why we must redouble our commitment to working with our international partners to address COVID-19 and its far-reaching consequences. Because it is only through working together and a continued commitment to multilateralism that we will be able to build resilience, particularly for developing economies and the vulnerable small, developing and least developed, countries so as to ensure no one is left behind.

“I want to thank all of our member states for their continuing joint commitment to tackle the pandemic and its impacts and to thank the Chair in Office for their support to the Secretariat in preparing this leadership statement on COVID-19.”

The Commonwealth is a voluntary association of 54 independent and sovereign countries. It spans the globe, including both advanced economies and developing countries, in Africa, Asia, the Caribbean and Americas, Europe and the Pacific. Its combined population is 2.4 billion, of which more than 60 per cent is aged under 30.

The Commonwealth Secretariat supports member countries to build democratic and inclusive institutions, strengthen governance and promote justice and human rights. Our work helps to grow economies and boost trade, deliver national resilience, empower young people, and address threats such as climate change, debt and inequality.

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