Just after the Royal Funeral of the late Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II of blessed memory, two distinguished Sierra Leone Citizens met each other for the first time.

Sierra Leone First Lady Her Excellency Mrs. Fatima Maada Bio and British Secretary of State for Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Affairs Honourable James Cleverly held a privileged conversation following which they posed for this lovely photograph together.

It can be recalled that the British Foreign Secretary is the son of a Sierra Leone woman, Evelyn Suna Cleverly (née Auber) from Bo District in Southern Sierra Leone and a British Father James Philip Cleverly. Therefore the British Foreign Secretary is a dual citizen of both Britain and Sierra Leone.

The radiant smiles on the faces of these two Sierra Leone citizens (H.E. Mrs. Bio and Hon. Cleverly) say it all. The heritage ties that bind are strong.

Meanwhile, shortly after her meeting with the Foreign Secretary, the First Lady H.E. Mrs. Fatima Maada Bio flew out of London to join His Excellency the President Dr. Julius Maada Bio at the United Nations in New York, USA.

James Cleverly was appointed Secretary of State for Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Affairs on 6 September 2022.

Before that, James was Minister of State for Europe and North America in the Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office (FCDO) from February to July 2022. He was also Minister for Middle East, North Africa and North America from September 2020 to February 2022. James was first appointed as a joint Minister of State for Middle East and North Africa in the Foreign & Commonwealth Office and the Department for International Development on 13 February 2020.

James was Minister without Portfolio from July 2019 to February 2020, and Parliamentary Under Secretary of State at the Department for Exiting the European Union from April 2019 to July 2019. He was first elected as the Conservative MP for Braintree in May 2015.