African Ambassadors call for support of Dr Tedros Adhanom, the African Union candidate for WHO DG
Statement and Declaration of the Permanent Delegation of the African Union to the United Nations Office and Other International Organizations in Geneva, Switzerland.
GENEVA, Switzerland — May 17, 2017 — African Ambassadors accredited to the United Nations in Geneva today reiterated their support for Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus of Ethiopia for the Director General role of the World Health Organization.
They urged other regional groups and WHO member States to support his candidacy. Dr. Tedros’s candidacy was endorsed by the African Union, which recognized him as the most qualified candidate for the post at the scheduled election next week, May 23rd. This election will be marked by an unprecedented event: it will be the first time that a Director-General of WHO will be elected after a ballot in which all UN Member States will be allowed to vote.
Dr. Tedros previously served as Minister of Health and Minister of Foreign Affairs of Ethiopia. If he is elected Director-General of WHO, Dr Tedros will be the first head of a UN agency from Africa and the first to have served at the national level both as Minister of Health and Minister of Foreign Affairs.
As Minister of Health of Ethiopia, Dr. Tedros has systematically transformed the Ethiopia health system in order to improve public health and strengthen the response to epidemics.
“Dr. Tedros is the best candidate to be elected as the next Director-General of WHO because he is the only one who has conceived, implemented and directed the integral reform of a system health. He is a man of great integrity and humility, very much loved and respected by the people and the communities he has served,” said Jean-Marie Ehouzou, the Ambassador of the African Union to the United Nations. “WHO is at the crossroads of its history and more than ever needs a determined reformer. We call on all Member States of WHO and member countries of the regional groups to support and vote for Dr. Tedros,” he said.
Mr. Pedro Afonso Comissario, Ambassador of Mozambique to the United Nations, said, “With the growing global consensus on the need to advance universal health coverage as a factor for sustainable development, diplomatic, political and technical skills Dr. Tedros will be crucial in leading WHO towards the achievement of this goal.”
Dr. Francois Xavier Ngarambe, Ambassador of Rwanda to the United Nations in Geneva, said: “The Africans are completely united behind Dr. Tedros because he is the best candidate who has a track record of successful results and impact. We are proud to say that Dr. Tedros is the best candidate to head the WHO, not only for the African continent, but especially for the benefit and the service of the whole world “.
Under the direction of Dr. Tedros when he was Minister of Health of Ethiopia from 2005 to 2012, infant mortality has declined by two-thirds, enabling its country to achieve the Millennium Development Goals, two years before the scheduled deadline. At the same time, HIV infections have declined by 90%, malaria mortality by 75% and tuberculosis mortality by 64%.
In addition to being the candidate approved by the African Union, Dr Tedros was also approved by the Group of African, Caribbean and Pacific States.
You can read more about Dr. Tedros and his vision for a healthy world as #NextDG at #WHA70 on his website: www.drtedros.com/ — and follow along with his campaign on social media at Facebook.com/DrTedros.Official and on Twitter at @DrTedros. Sign up for the campaign’s newsletter `From the Desk of Dr. Tedros’ at http://bit.ly/2nGWtLm.