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Dr Luis Sambo nominated as WHO Regional Director for Africa

Press release of the WHO Regional Office for Africa

Dr Luis Gomes Sambo

Dr Luis Gomes Sambo was today nominated by the WHO Regional Committee for Africa for the post of WHO Regional Director for Africa.

Dr Sambo, 52, of Angolan nationality, is currently the Director of Programme Management at the WHO Regional Office for Africa (AFRO), where he is responsible for the management and operation of the programmes of WHO in the African region.

Dr Sambo received a degree in medicine from the University of Angola and “Universitade Nova de Lisboa” Portugal, in 1977. In 1988, he completed a programme of post-graduate study in public health at the College of Post-Graduate Studies, University of Angola. He has also attended professional courses in public health at The Johns Hopkins University, United States of America, and the University of Geneva in Switzerland.

Dr Sambo is fluent in written and spoken Portuguese, English and French – the three working languages of WHO in the region.

His 25 years of professional experience in the field of public health include 15 at WHO which he joined in 1989 as Chief of the Inter-country strategic support team in Harare, Zimbabwe. In this position he was responsible for the technical coordination of the support provided to the countries of Southern Africa.

He served as WHO Representative in Guinea Bissau from 1990 to 1994, and as Regional Adviser in charge of the coordination of the Health for All strategy at AFRO between 1994 and 1995. Dr Sambo was Director of the Development of Health Services Division at AFRO from 1996 to 1998 when he was appointed Director of Programme Management.

Before joining WHO, Dr Sambo had served his native Angola in various capacities as Vice-Minister of Health, Director of Human Resources for Health, Director of International Cooperation, Director of Health Services in Cabinda province, and District Medical Officer in the Municipality of Cacuaco, in Luanda Province.

On Wednesday, the 54th Session of the Regional Committee interviewed Dr Sambo and three other candidates for the post -- Dr Deogratias Barakamfitiye (Burundi), Dr Phetsile Kholekile Dlamini (Swaziland) and Dr Francis Gervase Omaswa (Uganda). Earlier, on Tuesday, Zambia withdrew its candidate, Dr Evaristo Njelesani. Today the Health Ministers voted on the four candidates.

Dr Sambo’s nomination will be submitted for appointment to the WHO Executive Board scheduled to meet in Geneva from 17 to 25 January 2005.

The Regional Director-elect will succeed Dr Ebrahim Malick Samba who retires in January 2005 after serving two terms (1994 to 2004).

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For more information contact:

Samuel Ajibola
Telephone: +091 231 405
Mobile phone: 091 231 405
E-mail: ajibolas@afro.who.int