Fathimath Najwa is presently a Joint Secretary at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Maldives. She is currently heading the Middle East and Africa Division at the Ministry. Prior to that, in 2020, she was leading work in the International Affairs department, on the Commonwealth, the Organization of Islamic Cooperation and the Indian Ocean Rim Association. During this period, she was involved in the successful organization and participation of the Maldives in several important high-level events virtually, including mobilizing important and urgent assistance to the Maldives to combat the COVID-19 pandemic.
In 2019, she served for a year in New York, at the Permanent Mission of the Maldives to the United Nations as Minister and was a representative of the Government of Maldives at the 73rd United Nations General Assembly. In addition to actively leading negotiations at the UN on issues of importance to the Small Island Developing States in the Economic and Financial Committee, she also led the work of the Maldives, at the Special Political and Decolonization Committee and the Legal Committee. She was a lead negotiator in the UN process to elaborate the text of an international legally binding instrument under the United Nations Convention on the Law of Sea on the conservation and sustainable use of marine biological diversity of areas beyond national jurisdiction (BBNJ).
She served at the SAARC Secretariat, Kathmandu as Director, Social Affairs, from July 2014 for a three-year term, as the Director representing the Maldives. In the Secretariat, Ms. Najwa, as the head of Social Affairs Division, coordinated and drove the implementation of the Social Affairs mandate of SAARC in its eight Member States, which included key issues related to health, women, children and youth. She was successful during this time, in establishing the SAARC Gender Policy Advocacy Group - the first high-level regional advocacy group which allows governments of South Asia to work with civil society at a regional level. She also facilitated the negotiations to draft a SAARC Youth Charter and Action Plan, which aims to empower and support the youth of South Asia.
Ms. Najwa has served in the Maldives Foreign Service in different capacities at the headquarter as well as in diplomatic missions abroad, since her joining the Service in 2001. Prior to being deputed at the SAARC Secretariat, she served in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Maldives as Head of SAARC Division.
In 2013, in New York, she served at the Permanent Mission as First Secretary/Head of Chancery. She was a representative of the Government of Maldives at the 68th United Nations General Assembly and lead the lobbying efforts in the Maldives' campaign for re-election at the United Nations Human Rights Council.
In Beijing, working directly under the Ambassador, as First Secretary and head of economic, commercial and cultural department at the Maldives Embassy in China, she worked on improving the commercial relations between Maldives and China, promoted and facilitated Chinese investment in the Maldives, and organized several important activities to promote Maldives’ tourism in China. She also coordinated Maldives' participation at the 2010 Shanghai World Expo, as Deputy Commissioner General of Maldives’ pavilion.
In New Delhi, she served as Third Secretary at the Maldives High Commission in India and undertook several consular responsibilities, and coordinated a number of high-level visits including two state visits.
Ms. Najwa is a post graduate in Public Administration from the Lee Kwan Yew School of Public Policy, National University of Singapore and holds a Bachelor’s degree from Osmania University in Hyderabad, India.
She speaks Dhivehi (native tongue), English, Hindhi/Urdu, and basic Mandarin.