July 15, 2024, 4:18 am

Diplomatic correspondent

2023-11-01 22:41:44 BdST

Saima Wazed elected to lead WHO Southeast Asia region

Saima Wazed, daughter of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, has won the election of the World Health Organization’s regional director for Southeast Asia which is composed of eleven countries.

Bangladesh, Bhutan, DPR (North) Korea, India, Indonesia, Maldives, Nepal, Sri Lanka, Thailand and Timor-Leste took part in the voting held in New Delhi on Wednesday, the third day of the 76th session of the WHO Regional Committee for South-East Asia. Myanmar, the other member, did not attend the meeting.

Saima bagged eight votes, according to a press release issued by WHO today.

The other candidate, Dr Shambhu Prasad Acharya, nominated by Nepal, bagged two votes.

The nomination will be submitted to the WHO Executive Board during its 154th session, taking place on 22−27 January 2024 in Geneva, Switzerland.

The newly appointed Regional Director will take office on 1 February 2024.

Saima Wazed is globally famed for her role as a mental health expert—particularly autism. She is an advisor to the WHO’s director-general for mental health.

The South-East Asia Region, one of WHO's six regions, is headquartered in New Delhi, India. The office collaborates with health authorities and partners across 11 countries.

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