Commonwealth Deputy Secretary-General

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Two Commonwealth Deputy Secretaries-General assist the Secretary-General in running the Commonwealth Secretariat, which is the central institution of the Commonwealth of Nations. They are assigned an aspect of the Commonwealth's function to address particularly: one to economic affairs and the other to political affairs.

They are elected by the Commonwealth Heads of Government, like the Secretary-General. However, as their terms overlap with those of the Secretary-General, and don't coincide with Commonwealth Heads of Government Meetings (CHOGMs), the Heads of Government are represented through their respective High Commissioners in London.[1]

Currently, the two Deputy Secretaries-General are Mmasekgoa Masire-Mwamba for Political Affairs from Botswana and Deodat Maharaj for Economic Affairs and Development from Trinidad and Tobago since 2008 and 2014 respectively.

Lists of Deputy Secretaries-General[edit]

Economic Affairs and Development[edit]

Deputy Secretary-General for Economic Affairs and Development of the Commonwealth of Nations
Deodat Maharaj

since 2014
Style His Excellency
Appointer Commonwealth Heads of Government
Inaugural holder Tilak E. Gooneratne
Formation 1965
Name Country Start End
Tilak E. Gooneratne  Sri Lanka 1965 1970
Geoffrey Wilson  United Kingdom 1971 1971
Hunter Wade  New Zealand 1972 1974[2]
C. John Small  Canada 1979 1983
Peter Marshall  United Kingdom 1983 1988
Peter Unwin 1989 1993
Humphrey Maud 1993 1999
Veronica Sutherland 1999 2001
Winston Cox  Barbados 2001 2006
Ransford Smith  Jamaica 2006 2013
Deodat Maharaj  Trinidad and Tobago 2014 Incumbent

Political Affairs[edit]

Deputy Secretary-General for Political Affairs of the Commonwealth of Nations
Mmasekgoa Masire-Mwamba

since 2008
Style Her Excellency
Appointer Commonwealth Heads of Government
Inaugural holder A.L. Adu
Formation 1966
Name Country Start End
A. L. Adu  Ghana 1966 1970
M. A. Husain  India 1970 1977
Emeka Anyaoku  Nigeria 1977 19901
Anthony Siaguru  Papua New Guinea 1990 1995
Krishnan Srinivasan  India 1995 2002
Florence Mugasha  Uganda 2002 2008
Mmasekgoa Masire-Mwamba  Botswana 2008 Incumbent

1 Initially served from 1977 to 1983, leaving his post for a few months to serve as Minister of Foreign Affairs in Nigeria. He was re-instated later that year.


  1. ^ Doxey, Margaret (January 1979). "The Commonwealth Secretary-General: Limits of Leadership". International Affairs 55 (1): 67–83. doi:10.2307/2617133. 
  2. ^ McIntyre, W. David (November 2001). "'Viewing the Iceberg from Down Under': A New Zealand Perspective". Commonwealth & Comparative Politics 39 (3): 95–112. doi:10.1080/713999565.