English proficiency helps Sarawakian diplomat build foreign relations

Deddy (left) having a discussion with Abang Johari during the courtesy call.

By Peter Sibon

KUCHING, Aug 2: Newly appointed Minister Counsellor at the Malaysian High Commission to Islamabad, Deddy Faisal Ahmad Salleh, is all prepared to assume his new role in Pakistan.

Of all the skills, knowledge and experience gained over the years, it was the ability to converse well in English that has given the 42-year-old the confidence to carry out his duties, while being assigned to overseas mission.

Deddy has been a diplomat with over 15 years of experience with the Foreign Ministry.

“One thing about being a Sarawakian is that race and religion was never an issue. This is very important in my job as a diplomat, as I can be assigned anywhere in the world.

“Furthermore, my ability to speak English fluently has really helped me a lot,” he told DayakDaily, here, today.

Deddy, who is the outgoing director of the ministry’s Sarawak Office, paid a courtesy call on Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Abang Johari Tun Openg at Wisma Bapa Malaysia earlier.

A former Josephian (St Joseph’s School alumnus), he graduated from Universiti Teknologi Mara (UiTM) in Mass Communications. He also possessed a Diploma in Public Administration from the National Public Administration Institute (Intan).

Deddy, who comes from Kampung Surabaya Ulu in Petra Jaya, expressed admiration to Sarawak’s rich biodiversity, culture and traditions, something which he always promote to the world.

His first diplomatic posting was in Khartoum, Sudan, as the First Secretary and Head of Chancery at the Malaysian Embassy from 2010 to 2013.

He was then transferred to Canada between 2013 and 2016, to assume the post of the First Secretary at the High Commission of Malaysia in Ottawa.

“The main task was to keep the Malaysian government well informed about Canadian political, security, economic issues and development through regular reporting and analysis, as well as making arrangement and coordinating high-level visits and meetings between Malaysian and Canadian government leaders.

“Throughout these overseas assignments, I managed to maintain close contact with a wide range of Canadian and Sudanese political leaders and government officials, representatives of non-governmental organisations, civil societies, journalists and the ordinary citizens in the host countries,” he said.

Deddy and his wife Noor Emilia are blessed with two daughters, Noor Aleysha Najwa and Noor Aaliyah.

Currently, there are five Sarawakians who are either high commissioners or ambassadors to foreign missions, namely Gloria Peter Tiwet (Nigeria), Datuk Sadik Kathergany (United Kingdom), Datuk Kennedy Jawan (Japan), Westmoreland Edward Palon (the Vatican) and Hendy Assan (Uzbekistan)

Three Sarawakians are also serving as consul generals, namely Devrin Jack (Los Angeles), Bong Yik Juan (Nanning, China) and Jeremiah Oliver Jitos (New York). — DayakDaily