WHO Elects First African Director-General

Posted 23 May 2017 | By Zachary Brennan 

WHO Elects First African Director-General

The World Health Organization (WHO) on Tuesday announced that Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus of Ethiopia has been elected by member states as the new Director-General of WHO.

Nominated by the Ethiopian government, he will begin his five-year term on 1 July 2017 and succeed Dr. Margaret Chan, who has been Director-General since January 2007. Chan addressed the 70th World Health Assembly on Monday, noting the challenges that lay ahead for the agency.

Ghebreyesus, who had been accused of covering up three cholera epidemics in Ethiopia, previously served as its Minister of Foreign Affairs from 2012 to 2016 and as Minister of Health from 2005 to 2012.

Ghebreyesus defeated two others vying for the top role: Britain’s Dr. David Nabarro and Pakistan’s Dr. Sania Nishtar.

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