Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus
- 1 Political Ideology
- 2 Support of China-Backed Dictator Mugabe
- 3 Extreme Support of Communist Leadership in China
- 4 Allegations of Covering up Cholera Outbreaks
- 5 Official Biography
- 6 Links
- 7 References
Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus is the Director-General of the World Health Organization (WHO), an arm of the United Nations which receives the larges percentage of their $4.4 billion budget from the United States. He is from Asmara, the capital city of Eritrea, Ethiopia. He has been a politburo member of the Tigray People's Liberation Front (TPLF). Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus won his post in Ethiopia after receiving backing from China in the May 2017 election. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus is the first-ever WHO chief not to be a medical doctor.
Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus is a member and has served on the politburo of the Tigray People's Liberation Front (TPLF), which "traces its origins in the Marxist-inspired student movements of the late 1960s and early 1970s in Ethiopia... It was a staunch socialist movement with its hardcore secret party, the Marxist-Leninist League of Tigray (MLLT)..." which was founded by Meles Zenawi. The TPLF is one of the branches of the "Marxist and violently repressive" Ethiopian People’s Revolutionary Democratic Front (EPRDF), which consisted of Tigray People's Liberation Front, Amhara Democratic Party, Oromo Democratic Party and Southern Ethiopian People's Democratic Movement.
Support of China-Backed Dictator Mugabe
Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus received wide condemnation for his support of Zimbabwe's dictator, China-backed Robert Mugabe. Tedros paid tribute to Zimbabwe as a country committed to “provide health care for all,” as reported at the Washington Post.
- "Some speculate that Tedros’s decision to appoint Mugabe was a pay-off to China, which worked tirelessly behind the scenes to help Tedros defeat the United Kingdom candidate for the WHO job, David Nabarro. Tedros’s victory was also a victory for Beijing, whose leader Xi Jinping has made public his goal of flexing China’s muscle in the world.
- "Beijing strongly supports Mugabe, and Mugabe has repaid the favor, helping to ease pressure from Africans who criticize China for exploiting Africa’s natural resources. In December 2015, Mugabe gushed about Xi at the China-Africa summit in Johannesburg, even calling the Chinese autocrat “a God-sent person.”
The Daily Caller reported that Tedros tapped Mugabe to be "a UN Goodwill ambassador":
- "Just months after taking over at the WHO, Tedros tapped former Zimbabwe dictator Robert Mugabe, a notorious human rights violator, to be a UN Goodwill ambassador and only backed down after an international outcry.
- “Diplomats said [Mugabe’s] appointment was a political payoff from Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus — the WHO’s first African director-general — to China, a long-time ally of Mugabe, and the 50 or so African states that helped to secure Tedros’s election earlier this year,” Sunday Times columnist Rebecca Myers wrote in October 2017.
- “Chinese diplomats had campaigned hard for the Ethiopian, using Beijing’s financial clout and opaque aid budget to build support for him among developing countries,” she added.
Extreme Support of Communist Leadership in China
On January 14, 2020, the World Health Organization Tweeted: “Preliminary investigations conducted by the Chinese authorities have found no clear evidence of human-to-human transmission of the novel #coronavirus (2019-nCoV) identified in #Wuhan, #China”
Meeting in China
- Stopping the spread of this virus both in China and globally is WHO’s highest priority,” said Dr Tedros. “We appreciate the seriousness with which China is taking this outbreak, especially the commitment from top leadership, and the transparency they have demonstrated, including sharing data and genetic sequence of the virus. WHO is working closely with the government on measures to understand the virus and limit transmission. WHO will keep working side-by-side with China and all other countries to protect health and keep people safe.”
- The WHO mission comes as the number of people confirmed with the virus rose to over 4500 globally on 28 January, the greatest number being in China.
- The WHO delegation highly appreciated the actions China has implemented in response to the outbreak, its speed in identifying the virus and openness to sharing information with WHO and other countries.
Following that same meeting, Tedros said “China is actually setting a new standard for outbreak response.”
‘solidarity not stigma’
During a briefing on February 14 2020, Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus called for "Solidarity, Not Stigma," alluding to a concern that the world will behave in a discriminatory way toward China. During the same briefing, Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus stated that the World Health Organization was seeking "clarity" on whether or not clinical diagnoses could capture other respiratory illnesses with the the Wuhan coronavirus data.
- "WHO is seeking clarity on how clinical diagnoses are being made so that other respiratory illnesses, including influenza, are not getting mixed into the COVID-19 data."
Blinded by Beijing
Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus has received criticism for his gushing support of the communist Chinese government, a potential conflict of interest considering that China is the "largest investor by far...which sees Ethiopia as a centerpiece of its African investment strategy for the Belt and Road."
'Strategic Cooperation' between WHO and China
- Chinese Vice President Wang Qishan met with World Health Organization (WHO) Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus in Beijing Tuesday.
- Speaking highly of the cooperation between China and the WHO, Wang said the Chinese government is committed to promoting the development of a "Healthy China" and is continually improving Chinese people's health and well-being through development.
- China appreciates the critical role played by the WHO in coordinating global health development and supports WHO in promoting the implementation of health-related Sustainable Development Goals at all levels. "China is willing to further strengthen cooperation with the WHO and contribute to the development of global health," said Wang.
Joint OpEd with Chinese foreign minister
- ...Indeed, on the basis of the principles of equality, mutual respect and win-win cooperation, China and Ethiopia have developed multi-dimensional relations, with people-to-people, business-to-business, government-to-government and party-to-party relations as the cornerstones of the relationship. We are sincere friends, reliable partners and good brothers who share both happiness and adversity, each rejoicing in the successes the other has achieved. In a nutshell, China-Ethiopian relations have become a real and excellent model for South-South Cooperation.
- China has become the biggest foreign investor and the largest trading partner of Ethiopia. Ethiopia is now one of the main markets in Africa for Chinese products, equipment, technology and investment. Since 2006, China, through various mechanisms, has provided a large amount of financial support for the construction of a number of Ethiopia's mega projects, including the first express tollway and the first operative wind power plant, the Addis Ababa Light Track Railway and other modern railway developments, as well as the Tirunesh-Beijing Hospital and the Confucius Institute. These are all vivid illustrations of our fruitful and comprehensive relationship.
- In the international arena, China and Ethiopia are working closely together to address global challenges including climate change, food insecurity, poverty and regional conflicts, and to promote China-Africa relations within the framework of the Forum on China-Africa Cooperation, and to safeguard the interests of developing countries generally.
- Within the context of globalization, China is unwaveringly pursuing its Chinese Dream and has been deepening the comprehensive reforms involved in realizing this. Similarly, Ethiopia is committed to its Ethiopian Renaissance, to fulfilling its five-year Growth and Transformation Plan and achieving its Vision 2025 to become a middle income country. China is now the second-largest economy in the world; and Ethiopia is emerging as one of the fastest growing economies in Africa and the world. Given our complementary needs, both countries are looking forward to greater opportunities for in-depth cooperation, and we are promoting bilateral relations in a number of areas.
Allegations of Covering up Cholera Outbreaks
Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus denies allegations that he covered up Cholera repeatedly in Ethiopia. From the New York Times in May 2017:
- "Outbreaks occurring in 2006, 2009 and 2011, he [Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus] said, were only 'acute watery diarrhea' in remote areas where laboratory testing “is difficult.” That is what the Ethiopian government said then and is saying now about an outbreak that began in January.
- W.H.O. officials have complained privately that Ethiopian officials are not telling the truth about these outbreaks. Testing for Vibrio cholerae bacteria, which cause cholera, is simple and takes less than two days.
- But cholera bacteria were found in stool samples tested by outside experts. As soon as severe diarrhea began appearing in neighboring countries, the cause was identified as cholera."
- Under the International Health Regulations, which apply to all W.H.O. members, countries must accurately report disease outbreaks. But the W.H.O. can officially report only what countries say. Historically, some countries have tried to cover up or play down outbreaks of human or animal diseases for fear that travel restrictions would be imposed, tourism would suffer or food exports would be curtailed — or simply as a matter of national pride.
- The regulations were strengthened after China denied for months in 2003 that it had a serious outbreak of lethal respiratory disease in its southern cities. That outbreak ultimately became known as SARS, for severe acute respiratory syndrome, and spread to several other countries, including Canada.
- Dr. Margaret Chan, the current W.H.O. director general, is from China, but was never accused of participating in China’s cover-up. She was the director of health in Hong Kong at the time and led effective responses to both avian flu and SARS.
- China has since changed its policy and now is often praised for acknowledging outbreaks promptly, fighting them aggressively and cooperating with other health agencies."
In February, 2007, it was reported at CBC that "More than 680 people in Ethiopia have died in a suspected cholera outbreak...Some 60,000 people have been infected, but the country's Health Ministry is resisting pressure to declare an emergency despite a UN warning that the disease is an epidemic.":
- "Ethiopian health officials, who say the disease is not cholera, are describing the outbreak as acute watery diarrhea, but they have not shared any of the test results that they have carried out.
- Ethiopian Health Ministry spokesman Ahmed Emano said that contrary to UN concerns, the outbreak was being contained by the government.
- Cholera is transmitted through contaminated water and is linked to poor hygiene, overcrowding and bad sanitation. Symptoms include diarrhea and vomiting and it is deadly if untreated.
- "It can kill someone in as little as five hours," said Kebba O. Jaiteh, emergency officer with the UN's World Health Organization in Ethiopia.
- Ethiopia's economy could suffer if the country declares a cholera emergency.
- "The Ethiopian Health Ministry did not share the results of the lab tests since last April," Jaiteh said. "It can mean some serious economic losses, especially in terms of international trade and tourism.
- "Many African countries don't declare a cholera emergency even when they know for a fact that it is in their country for these very economic reasons."
- "Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus was elected as WHO Director-General for a five-year term by WHO Member States at the Seventieth World Health Assembly in May 2017. He is the first WHO Director-General to have been elected from multiple candidates by the World Health Assembly, and is the first person from the WHO African Region to serve as WHO's chief technical and administrative officer. Immediately after taking office on 1 July 2017 Dr Tedros outlined five key priorities for the Organization: universal health coverage; health emergencies; women’s, children’s and adolescents’ health; health impacts of climate and environmental change; and a transformed WHO.
- Dr Tedros served as Ethiopia’s Minister of Foreign Affairs from 2012–2016. In this role he led efforts to negotiate the Addis Ababa Action Agenda, in which 193 countries committed to the financing necessary to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals. Dr Tedros served as Ethiopia’s Minister of Health from 2005–2012, where he led a comprehensive reform of the country’s health system. The transformation he led as Ethiopia’s Minister of Health improved access to health care for millions of people. Under his leadership Ethiopia invested in critical health infrastructure, expanded its health workforce, and developed innovative health financing mechanisms.
- Born in the city of Asmara, Eritrea, Dr Tedros holds a Doctorate of Philosophy (PhD) in Community Health from the University of Nottingham and a Master of Science (MSc) in Immunology of Infectious Diseases from the University of London. Dr Tedros is globally recognised as a health scholar, researcher, and diplomat with first-hand experience in research, operations, and leadership in emergency responses to epidemics.
- A Political History of the Tigray People’s Liberation Front (1975-1991): Revolt, Ideology and Mobilisation in Ethiopia inc. Marxist-Leninist League of Tigrai
- Role model for bilateral ties
- Why TPLF is desperately fighting for Dr Tedros to be next DG of WHO?
- WHO DIRECTOR-GENERAL TEDROS IS NEW PATRON OF THE WORLD HEALTH SUMMIT
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- Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus: The Ethiopian at the heart of the coronavirus fight (accessed on March 22, 2020)
- The origins of the Tigray People's Liberation Front (accessed on March 22, 2020)
- U.S. Funds World Health Organization That Boot-Licks China, With Deadly Results (accessed on March 23, 2020)
- Ethiopian People's Revolutionary Democratic Front (EPRDF) (accessed on March 26, 2020)
- A Political History of the Tigray People’s Liberation Front (1975-1991): Revolt, Ideology and Mobilisation in Ethiopia (accessed on March 21, 2020)
- Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus praises Meles Zenawi on Twitter (accessed on March 22, 2020)
- Another week, another scandal at the United Nations (accessed on March 23, 2020)
- Top WHO Official Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus Won Election With China’s Help. Now He’s Running Interference For China On Coronavirus (accessed on March 23, 2020)
- WHO archived tweet (accessed on March 23, 2020)
- World Health Organization: Coronavirus must generate ‘solidarity not stigma’ (accessed on March 23, 2020)
- Who Is WHO’s Tedros Adhanom? The Wuhan Lockdown is Unprecedented (accessed on March 22, 2020)
- Chinese vice president meets WHO director-general (accessed on March 20, 2020)
- Role model for bilateral ties (accessed on March 20, 2020)
- Candidate to Lead the W.H.O. Accused of Covering Up Epidemics (accessed on March 22, 2020)
- Hundreds die in cholera outbreak in Ethiopia (accessed on March 22, 2020)
- Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus' biography on the World Health Organization Website (accessed on March 20, 2020)