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WHO Appointed New Africa Chief

Update Date: Nov 05, 2014 11:06 AM EST
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With the Ebola outbreak continuing to affect Liberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea, the World Health Organization (WHO) has decided to elect their next Africa chief.

According to Awa Marie Coll Seck, the health minister of Senegal, the next director will be Matshidiso Moeti, a doctor from Botswana who has also been a part of the WHO for years. The vote, which was chaired by the Senegalese health minister, was conducted during the WHO Africa's regional committee meeting located in Benin.

Moeti will be replacing Angolan doctor Luis Sambo, who has been criticized for how he handled the Ebola outbreak. Last month, an internal draft document revealed that the WHO blamed its regional staff for its poor response to the start of the Ebola outbreak.

"I'm very happy and proud of the way this process was conducted," Moeti said reported by TIME. "As regional director, I will work with every country in all the regions of our continent to improve the health of our populations."

Prior to this appointment, Moeti led the epidemiology department in Botswana as well as the AIDS department. She was also a part of WHO Africa as a regional adviser for women and children's health. Before becoming the regional adviser, Moeti was head of the WHO's Malawi office and was the deputy regional adviser for WHO Africa.

Although Moeti will not play a role in ending the Ebola outbreak since that responsibility has been turned over to the U.N. she will be in charge of preventing similar situations from occurring in the future.

As of October 31, 2014, the WHO counted a total of 13,567 cases of Ebola throughout the world with 4,951 deaths. In West Africa, Liberia has had the most cases and deaths associated with the virus.

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