ADDIS ABEBA – Ugandan Winnie Byanyima has been appointed as the next executive director of UNAids.
Byanyima has more than 30 years of experience in political leadership, diplomacy and humanitarian engagement, said UNAids in a statement.
“I am honored to be joining UNAIDS as the Executive Director at such a critical time in the response to HIV,” said Ms. Byanyima.
“The end of AIDS as a public health threat by 2030 is a goal that is within the world’s reach, but I do not underestimate the scale of the challenge ahead,” she continued. “Working with all its partners, UNAIDS must continue to speak up for the people left behind and champion human rights as the only way to end the epidemic.”
The United Nations Secretary-General, António Guterres, appointed Byanyima as the UNAIDS Executive Director and United Nations Under-Secretary-General following a comprehensive selection process.
The UNAIDS Committee of Co-sponsoring Organizations made the final recommendation on the appointment to the Secretary-General.
Ms. Byanyima brings a wealth of experience and commitment in harnessing the power of governments, multilateral agencies, the private sector and civil society to end the AIDS epidemic around the world.
She has also been the Executive Director of Oxfam International since 2013. Prior to that, she served for seven years as the Director of Gender and Development at the United Nations Development Program.
Ms. Byanyima, a mechanical engineer, began her career as a champion of marginalized communities and women 30 years ago as a member of parliament in the National Assembly and other top jobs in Uganda.