Behind row: Rezal Jaafar, Datuk Chris Tan, Jason Lee, Divan Vasudevan
Front row (seated): Zamrah Ismail, Zuraidah Mian, Khalilah Talha Mohd Dato Talha, Dato Mahadzhir Lokman, Thiruchelvam Subramaniam
At the 8th Annual General Meeting of Yayasan Antarabudaya Malaysia, members voted in a new Board member and retained two who were up for re-election this year.
Datuk Chris Tan, a returnee from Australia and now a Director at Pemandu, replaced longest-serving Board member Dr Yahya Mat Hassan while both Khalilah Dato’ Mohd Talha and Dr Jason Lee were re-elected into the Board.
In a no-holds barred opening remark, Chairperson Khalilah reminded members that AFS Malaysia need to become an organization that is valued by the Government and society for its intercultural prowess and solutions to address cultural gaps, more so now than ever in an increasingly divisive and politicized Malaysia. “This new focus from a society mindset to a corporate culture approach is to ensure we are a sustainable and relevant organization and can survive in an increasingly competitive world. We must bring professionalism into the equation so that AFS Malaysia and all its stakeholders gain the respect and recognition it deserves. We must embrace our diversity and we must include young volunteers too as they have the drive to move this forward and will become future leaders of this organization,” she said.
Khalilah also emphasized on the need for transparency at all levels, including from Chapters. She pledged that the Board would advocate transparency, good governance and accountability as one of its key deliverables and efforts are currently under way to document all processes, best practices and systems under the AFS Documentation Project (ADP) for greater clarity, efficiency and uniformity.