Chikwe Ihekweazu, the Director-General of Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC), has been appointed as the Assistant Director-General of the World Health Organisation (WHO) in charge of Health Emergency Intelligence.
His appointment was announced on Tuesday in a statement issued by the Organisation’s Director General, Tedros Adhanom.
The WHO DG said: “I am pleased to welcome Dr Chikwe Ihekweazu as an Assistant Director-General for Health Emergency Intelligence from November 1, 2021. He will lead the work on strengthening pandemic and epidemic intelligence globally, including heading the WHO Hub for Pandemic and Epidemic Intelligence in Berlin.
”I am confident that Dr Ihekweazu’s appointment will help further accelerate WHO’s work in health emergencies. Please join me in welcoming him to WHO.”
According to the profile given by WHO, Ihekweazu, is a Nigerian national, who was born in Germany. He is a graduate of the College of Medicine, University of Nigeria and has a Masters in Public Health (MPH) from the Heinrich-Heine University, Dusseldorf, Germany.
The current Director General of NCDC is a trained disease epidemiologist and public health physician
He has worked in senior public health and leadership positions in several National Public Health Institutes including The National Institute for Communicable Diseases South Africa (NICD), the UK’s Health Protection Agency, and Germany’s Robert Koch Institute (RKI).
Ihekweazu has also led several short-term engagements for World Health Organisation WHO, mainly in response to major infectious disease outbreaks around the world. He was part of the WHO-China Joint Mission on Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19).
He was awarded a Fellowship for the European Programme for Intervention Epidemiology Training (EPIET) in 2003 and subsequently completed his Public Health specialisation in the United Kingdom. He is widely published in medical peer-review journals.
His appointment will take effect from November 1, 2021.