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Dr. Sambo re-appointed WHO Regional Director for Africa

Jan 25, 2010, 2:56 PM | Article By: Momodou Faal

Dr Luis Gomes Sambo, an Angolan national was on Tuesday 19 January 2010 re-appointed as World Health Organisation's Regional Director for Africa, at the 126th Session of the Executive Board in Geneva, Switzerland.

He was unanimously nominated for his reappointment by member states at the WHO Regional Committee( RC) meeting held in Kigali, Rwanda, in August last year.

The committee requested the Director General to propose to the WHO Executive Board to reappoint Dr. Sambo as Regional Director with effect from 1 February 2010.

Dr. Margret Chang, the Director General of the World Health Organisation in congratulating Dr. Sambo described his reappointment as a good move, noting that they will continue to make a difference in the health of the African people, including women.

As she put it, “I committed the organisation’s performance to be assessed by how we as an organisation improve or make a contribution to improving the health of women in the world.”

Speaking on behalf of the 46 member states of the WHO Africa region, Dr. Ali Djibo from Niger expressed sincere thanks to the Executive Board for confirming the unanimous nomination of the Regional Director by member states.

The reasons for his unanimous election are the following: the intrinsic competence of Dr. Sambo his managerial qualities, the significant progress that the region has made during his mandate and his deep knowledge of the health systems from the tertiary to the periphery, including the community level.)

In his acceptance speech, the Regional Director, Dr. Sambo expressed his gratitude to governments of all the 46 member state of the WHO in the African region, in particular the Ministers of Health for their overwhelming expression of confidence.

Despite some progress made in improving the health situation in Africa, maternal mortality, child mortality, HIV/AIDS,malaria,tuberculosis,  he said neglected tropical diseases, epidemics and the emerging burden of chronic diseases are still hitting very hard, particularly the poorest segment of the population in Africa.

Prior to joining WHO, Dr. Sambo was the Vice-Minister of Health in Angola from 1983-89. He has served in various positions within the WHO, including Chief of the Inter-Country Strategic Support team for Southern African countries, WHO representative for Guinea Bissau, Head of Health for All Strategy, Director of Division of Health Systems and Services Development  and Director of Programme Management at the Regional Office.