Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus Re-elected as WHO Chief

The first African to head the World Health Organization, Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus was reelected as the Chief of the specialized agency
Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus Re-elected as WHO Chief
Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus Re-elected as WHO Chief

The first African to head the World Health Organization, Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus was reelected as the Chief of the specialized agency with overwhelming support after running unopposed for a second term.

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.

According to sources, as reported by Hindustan Times, Tedros had received 155 of the 160 votes cast.

"I am really, really overwhelmed by the support," Tedros told the assembly after his re-election was announced to thundering applause.

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"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,” he said.

Tedros has become a familiar face as he spearheads the global response to the coronavirus pandemic -- an issue that remains front and centre at the WHO's annual assembly taking place in Geneva this week.

The Ethiopian former minister of health and of foreign affairs has also increasingly been sounding the alarm over the heavy toll that conflicts like the war in Ukraine are taking on global health.

"More even than pandemics, war shakes and shatters the foundations on which previously stable societies stood," the 57-year-old malaria expert said on the first day of the World Health Assembly on Sunday.

"And it leaves psychological scars that can take years or decades to heal," he said, stressing his first-hand experiences.

"I am a child of war," he said, the emotion palpable in his voice.

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