June 14

Press Release: Africa CDC Launches Fellowship of Kofi Annan Global Health Leadership Program

On 12 April 2021, the Africa Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (Africa CDC) and the Kofi Annan Foundation launched the Fellowship of Kofi Annan Global Health Leadership Programme which aims to support senior aspirational African public health leaders acquire advanced skills for transformational public health leadership in Africa. The programme is the first initiative under the Kofi Annan Global Health Leadership Program (KA-GHLP) that was launched on 25 May 2020 by the African Union Commission (AUC) and Africa CDC.

The leadership programme was established in honour of the late Kofi Annan, a visionary and principled leader as epitomized by one of his brainchild achievements, the establishment of the Global Fund for AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria (The Global Fund) in 2001, which transformed the approach to preventing and managing infectious diseases and the practice of public health globally.

Through the Kofi Annan Global Health Leadership Programme, fellows will acquire advanced competencies in leadership, governance, health diplomacy, and management of public health initiatives in Africa over the course of 12 months. During that time, fellows will participate in five modules, with the first module focusing on public health leadership in Africa.

“Public health is interconnected with politics, policy and diplomacy, hence the need to create a whole generation of public health experts and leaders”, said Dr John Nkengasong, Director of Africa CDC. “The public health leaders we seek to develop will be part of the critical mass of leaders needed to resolve this pandemic and tackle other existing and future public health challenges on the continent – not just with technical skills, but also skills that can bring diplomacy, recognize globalization, protectionism and scientific data” he continued.

The fellowship received an overwhelming response to its launch, receiving over 600 applications from 44 countries. Through a vigorous selection process, the final selection of the inaugural cohort resulted in 20 fellows representing 14 AU Member States across all five AU regions.

The interim programme director, Dr Alex Coutinho, welcomed the fellows to the beginning of a lifelong journey of self-discovery and learning geared towards building a critical mass of public health leaders who will drive the agenda of health in Africa to benefit all of its people. He stated, “Leadership is about facing challenges, facing them head-on, while adapting to get the desired results”.

El Hadji As Sy, Chair of the Board of the Kofi Annan Foundation, underlined how the Kofi Annan Global Health Leadership Program is a powerful legacy for the vision, life and aspirations of the late Kofi Annan. He endorsed the objectives of the program to build leadership capacity and the focus on health and human development, without which Africa will continue to lag behind other continents.

For more information on the Kofi Annan Global Health Leadership Programme and the Fellowship in Public Health Leadership Program, please visit: Kofi Annan Fellowship in Public Health Leadership Programme.

Source: Africa CDC (link opens in a new window)

Health Care
public health