The Director-General of the World Health Organisation (WHO), Tedros Ghebreyesus, has been re-elected for another five-year term of office.
Mr. Ghebreyesus was re-elected at the ongoing 75th World Health Assembly (WHA75) meeting, which is currently being held in Geneva, Switzerland.
The President of the 75th Assembly, Ahmed Abdilleh, said the Health Assembly adopted in a private session the resolution approving the contract of the director-general.
The Director-General had received more than two-thirds of secret-ballot votes cast, as needed to be appointed, but the UN health agency did not provide a precise breakdown.
Sources in the room said he had received 155 of the 160 votes cast.
Mr Ghebreyesus, who was first elected in 2017, will officially commence his new term on August 16, 2022.
Abdilleh said: “According to the Article 31 of the constitution and rule 109 of the rules of procedure of the World Health Assembly, the assembly approves the contract establishing the terms and conditions of appointment, salary and other emoluments for the post of director-general as amended.
“Pursuant to Rule 112 of the rules of procedure of the World Health Assembly, the assembly authorises the president of the 75th World Health Assembly to sign the contract in the name of the organisation.”
He then invited Mr Ghebreyesus to take the oath, quoting staff regulations 1.10 and 1.11 in pursuance of Article 37 of the Constitution.
After signing the contract, the WHO director-general expressed his appreciation for the re-election and highlighted three priorities for the next tenure.
He said: “Very difficult to express my words. Thank you so much indeed. This is overwhelming. I’m grateful and very humbled for your confidence and trust.”
“We have already presented this, it’s to promote health and keeping people healthy should be at the centre. Managing diseases should not be the centre. Of course, people will be seeking how that has to be managed but we have to focus on promoting health. That’s number one.
“Number two, we have to focus on primary health care. This centre of universal health coverage, its foundation should be primary health care. The third priority on emergency preparedness is dependent on the first to focus on health promotion, disease prevention,
“This recognition is not only for me. I really believe this is recognition for the whole WHO family. I am really proud to be WHO.”
Tedros has become a familiar face as he spearheads the international response to the coronavirus pandemic — an issue that remains front and centre at the WHO’s annual assembly taking place in Geneva this week.
Much controversy has surrounded this meeting, including the potential signing of a ‘pandemic treaty’ that hands over more domestic powers to the world body.
TOTT News will be providing a recap of most important highlights from the event.
Stay tuned to the website for more from WHA75.
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