British High Commissioner to South Africa Nigel Casey and his guests during lunch to celebrate Commonwealth Day yesterday.
BRITISH High Commissioner to South Africa Nigel Casey has lauded the country's continued efforts in advancing the ideals of human rights, democracy, good governance and peace, as espoused by the 53 member states that form part of the Commonwealth.

Speaking at a lunch in Water- kloof yesterday, held to celebrate this year's Commonwealth Day, Casey said the day was a significant part in remembering what transpired during the apartheid era and the transition that eventually took place from the old regime to a democratic South Africa.

It was in 1994, under former president Nelson Mandela, that South Africa was invited to rejoin the Commonwealth, bringing an end to sanctions imposed upon it during the apartheid era.

Prior to the country returning, the leaders of the various sovereign states felt that they could not be associated with the injustices that were taking place inside the country.

Casey said the high commission looked forward to President Cyril Ramaphosa, to whom he paid homage for his astute contribution to Commonwealth programmes, to lead the South African delegation to this year's Commonwealth Business Forum in London.

He said the summit, to be held under the theme “Towards a Common Future” next month, would be used to tackle various social issues, such as human trafficking, climate change, terrorism and cybercrime, and as a platform where the youth and business could meet and find solutions.

The Commonwealth Games will be taking place in Queensland, Australia from April 4 to 15, with South Africa sending a large squad of participants.