WHO board meets to choose new leader

By Advocate.com Editors

Originally published on Advocate.com January 22 2003 12:00 AM ET

The World Health Organization's executive committee gathered Monday to elect a new leader to replace former Norwegian prime minister Gro Harlem Brundtland, who steps down in July after five years as director of WHO. Among the seven candidates, the front-runners are considered to be Peter Piot of Belgium, who currently heads the United Nations Joint Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS); Mozambique prime minister Pascoal Mocumbi; and Jong-Wook Lee of South Korea, who heads WHO's Stop TB Program. WHO's 32-member executive board was due to consider the nominations at the start of its eight-day meeting. It will summon five of the candidates to Geneva for interviews and make the final decision early next week. The executive board's decision is subject to approval by the full World Health Assembly in May.