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WHO appoints Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, 3 others as goodwill ambassadors, as 72nd World Health Assembly opens

President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf

Former Liberian President, Ellen Johnson Sirleaf  was today named a goodwill ambassador by the World Health Organisation (WHO) to promote healthier lives, stronger health workforce and improved mental health globally.

Mrs Serleaf was appointed along three other personalities in the fields of sports, politics and community mobilization. They are: Alisson Becker, goalkeeper of the Brazilian national and Liverpool football teams, Dr Natália Loewe Becker, medical doctor and health advocate from Brazil also named  WHO Goodwill Ambassadors for Health Promotion and Cynthia Germanotta, President of Born This Way Foundation, which was co-founded with her daughter Lady Gaga, named as WHO Goodwill Ambassador for Mental Health.

The appointment of the goodwill ambassadors was announced today by WHO Director-General Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus in his speech to open the 72nd World Health Assembly in Geneva.

“I welcome President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, Cynthia Germanotta, Alisson Becker and Natália Loewe Becker as WHO’s new Goodwill Ambassadors and look forward to working with them over the coming years.

“Each of our new ambassadors are champions in their own right, from helping their communities rebuild and develop sustainably, to fighting for better mental health and well-being, to being role models for healthier living,” Dr. Tedro said.

The 72nd Session of the World Health Assembly (WHA)  attended by 4,000 delegates from 194 member states is taking place in Geneva, Switzerland from 20 – 28 May 2019. The assembly,  with the theme: “Universal Health Coverage: Leaving No-one Behind” will  focus on a specific health agenda prepared by the Executive Board.

The main functions of the World Health Assembly are to determine the policies of the Organization, appoint the Director-General, supervise financial policies, and review and approve the proposed programme budget.



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