A Change of Guard at the WHO
For the first time in its seventy-year history, the World Health Organization (WHO) will, effective July 1, be led by a nonphysician, an African, and a person from the global South. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus of Ethiopia campaigned in an unprecedented election that gave 186 nations equal voice and saw three globetrotting candidates plead their cases. In the past, the director-general of the WHO was selected in a secretive and elite process by the thirty-four members of its executive committee. This year, the entire World Health Assembly voted in three rounds of written, secret ballots; Tedros, as he prefers to be called, emerged victorious on May 23 carrying two-thirds of the votes.
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