Amitav Banerji took office as Director of Political Affairs in January 2009. He is the chief political adviser to the Secretary-General and is responsible for managing the Commonwealth's political activity and the division supporting this work.
Before then he was Director and Head of the Secretary-General's Office, a position he held since June 2000. In that capacity he offered policy advice to the Chief Executive on the entire range of issues which confront the Commonwealth. He also ensured that the Office provides the Secretary-General the support he needs to carry out his varied functions.
Amitav joined the Commonwealth Secretariat in 1990. Prior to his current assignment he was Special Adviser in the Political Affairs Division, where he was responsible for the Commonwealth's Democracy and Good Governance Programme, as well as organising the biennial Heads of Government Meetings.
He is a career diplomat from India and is fluent in six languages. He served the Indian Government in a number of positions at home and abroad. He was Private Secretary to the Indian Foreign Minister between 1979 and 1982. His diplomatic assignments have included Spain, Pakistan, Malaysia and the Indian Permanent Mission to the UN in New York.
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