Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus poised for re-election at WHO

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Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus will be the only candidate when the World Health Organisation (WHO) votes to elect its Director-General next year. The incumbent was first elected in 2017 as the first African to lead the global health body but his first five-year term expires in August next year.

The 56-year-old former health minister from Ethiopia, who has been at the forefront of the global fight against the COVID-19 pandemic, secured the backing of 28 countries that submitted nominations before the September 23rd deadline.

A letter confirming his sole nomination has been sent to all 194 WHO member states informing them of the confidential nominations. Ethiopia declined to nominate Dr Ghebreyesus- who is Tigrayan – for a second term due to tensions over the situation in its northern regions amid accusations that the DG was taking sides in the conflict – a claim he has denied.

Botswana, Rwanda and Kenya were the three African countries among the 28, mostly from Europe and the Middle East, that nominated him.

The WHO board will conduct interviews in January before the nomination is submitted to the World Health Assembly for a decision next May.

VIDEO: 74th World Health Assembly – Address by WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus