Diploma in Diplomacy 2020’s Graduation Ceremony
The Institute of Diplomacy and Foreign Relations (IDFR) organised the Diploma in Diplomacy 2020 Graduation Ceremony on 1 October 2020 at the Hilton Hotel, Kuala Lumpur with strict compliance to the existing SOP.
The event was graced by the Honourable Dato' Kamarudin Jaffar, Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs, Malaysia representing the Honourable Dato’ Seri Hishammuddin Tun Hussein, Minister of Foreign Affairs, Malaysia.
The ceremony was also attended by Dato' Sri Muhammad Shahrul Ikram Yaakob, Secretary General of the Ministry; Dato' Dr. Zulkapli Mohamed, Director, Human Capital Development Division, Public Service Department; Senior Officers from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and IDFR; DiD lecturers and speakers, IDFR’s Distinguished Fellows, as well as family members of the graduates.
The ceremony commenced with the welcoming remarks by YBhg. Dato’ Mohd Zamruni Khalid, Director General of IDFR. He congratulated the DiD participants for successfully completing their eight-month programme despite the challenges faced amid the Covid-19 pandemic. Dato’ Mohd Zamruni further commended the DiD participants for adapting to the new normal when the Movement Control Order (MCO) was enforced. He also assured the participants that despite the pandemic related challenges, IDFR has worked tirelessly to ensure that the quality of the DiD Programme remains intact.
The graduation ceremony then proceeded with the Address by the Honourable Dato' Kamarudin Jaffar, Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs, Malaysia. In his address, Dato’ Kamarudin expressed his appreciation to the DiD participants for successfully completing the DiD programme. He added that the DiD programme conducted by IDFR has provided a solid foundation for Malaysian young diplomats to develop into well-rounded, dynamic and effective foreign service officers. The DiD Programme’s core modules would equip the young diplomats with the necessary knowledge and skillsets to serve the country abroad.
The Honourable Dato’ Kamarudin was also pleased with the DiD participants’ dedication and commitment in overcoming the obstacles brought about by the pandemic and in completing this course with distinction. He ended his address by reminding the participants on the importance of upholding the highest standard of professionalism and integrity, to always improve oneself and to shoulder the responsibility of a diplomat with humility.
The highlight of the Graduation Ceremony was the presentation of three special awards by Dato' Kamarudin Jaffar. The Minister of Foreign Affairs Award for Overall Best Student was awarded to Mr. Muhammad Ashraff Nasaruddin; the Secretary General of Foreign Affairs Award for Outstanding Leadership was accorded to Mr. Jason Low Tze Hian and the Director General of IDFR Award for Best Academic Achievement was presented to Ms. Nur Atiqa Md. Akim.
In his best student speech, Mr. Muhammad Ashraff thanked all those who have guided him to the success as the programme fortified the participants’ skills and knowledge in the field of diplomacy and international relations. He also highlighted the importance of DiD Programme in providing the platform to inculcate the right attitude, mindset as well as the necessary knowledge and skills in order to equip themselves for their roles and function at Missions abroad.
At the end of the event, a montage showcasing the DiD 2020 participants’ activities throughout the eight-month journey was displayed to the audience, highlighting their memorable events during the whole Programme. The participants also gave their all in entertaining the audience through two beautiful and creative performances – traditional zapin dances and foreign language skits.
Overall, the DiD 2020 graduation ceremony was a huge success. In view of the Movement Control Order (MCO) during the Covid-19 pandemic, all Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) were adhered to by all guests to ensure public health, safety and well-being.
Johan Arief Jaafar
Competency Enhancement Centre