ISLAMABAD: Pakistan’s candidate vying for the top slot of World Health Organisation (WHO) could not qualify as Ethiopian candidate won the election with 133 votes.
UK candidate Dr David Nabarro, former health minister of Ethiopia Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus and Dr Sania Nishtar were among the top three contenders vying for the post.
The election campaign for WHO director general started in November last year, in which six countries fielded their candidates: Pakistan, Italy, France, UK, Hungry and Ethiopia.
First round of the elections were held in January this year in which Dr Nishtar, former health minister, was elected amongst the top three candidates.
All 194 member states voted on Tuesday in the final round for to elect the director general for the next five years.
In the first round Dr Ghebreyesus secured 95 votes, Dr Nabarro 52 and Dr Nishtar got 38 votes. The Pakistani contender could not qualify for the final round with short of 14 votes.
She was the first Pakistani candidate to have gone so far.
Federal Minister for National Health Services Saira Afzal Tarar and other health officials were in Geneva to support the Pakistan’s candidate. The government and civil society had widely supported Dr Nishtar.
She is Pakistan’s first female cardiologist who founded Heartfile in 1998, a think-tank that also financed poor patients.
Dr Nishtar has vast experience in global health in the multilateral system. She also served as a caretaker health, science and technology, information technology, and higher education minister.
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