LONDON: Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad is expected to deliver a major lecture at the Oxford Centre for Islamic Studies (OXCIS) at the University of Oxford, as part of his visit to the United Kingdom.
The prime minister, who is now in the UK en route to New York to attend the 73rd United Nation General Assembly, will be presenting a lecture titled "The Challenge of Good Governance in the Muslim World" as part of the Distinguished Lecture Series, at OXCIS’ newly-completed Malaysia Auditorium.
According to the centre's website, Dr Mahathir's lecture would also be live streamed in an adjacent room due to high demand.
Since its founding in 1985, the centre has brought many leading figures to Oxford to speak on matters related to the Islamic world. In its new premises, the centre has a number of dedicated lecture spaces including the Malaysia auditorium to allow further development of its programmes.
This marks the first major lecture that Dr Mahathir will deliver in the West since becoming Malaysia’s seventh prime minister, his second time at the helm of the country.
Dr Mahathir is no stranger to OXCIS, a recognised independent centre of the University of Oxford, where as Malaysia’s fourth prime minister, he delivered the lecture titled "Islam the Misunderstood Religion" on his first visit to the centre in 1996.
It is understood that for more than 20 years now, Dr Mahathir had maintained a keen, longstanding interest in the work carried out at OXCIS, where a number of Malaysian scholars had benefited from its numerous resources.
Dr Mahathir had made several visits to the new building when it was under construction and after it was completed in 2017.
The prime minister, accompanied by his wife Tun Dr Siti Hasmah Mohamad Ali as well as senior government officials on this first leg of the UK trip, has a packed two-day working itinerary.
He is expected to meet students and members of the UK chapter of the Bunga Raya Club, on Sunday afternoon. The Bunga Raya Club was set up by Dr Mahathir’s party, Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia (Bersatu), in Feby 2017 for Malaysians residing in the UK.
Prior to his trip to Oxford, Dr Mahathir will first visit the Dyson Design and Engineering Centre at the Imperial College London.
The prime minister and the Malaysian delegation are expected to depart for New York on Tuesday.
Dr Mahathir is expected to stop over in London again on Sept 29 after the UN General Assembly. During his return leg visit, he will meet captains of industry as well as fund managers in the UK to draw investment into Malaysia.
He will also be speaking at Chatham House as well as meet the Malaysian diaspora in London before returning to Malaysia on Oct 1.