Former Health Minister, Osotimehin Dies at 68

One time Minister for Heath and the Executive Director of the United Nations Populations Fund, UNFPA, Prof. Babatunde Osotimehin, is dead.
The UN Under-Secretary-General and former head of National Agency for the Control of Aids (NACA), was said to have died in the early hours of Monday.
The 68-year-old at a time served as Provost of the College of Medicine at the University of Ibadan before serving as NACA Director, where he was elevated to Health Minister by President Olusegun Obasanjo.
Osotimehin was appointed the fourth Executive Director of UNFPA in November 2011 and was reappointed in August 2014.
Born February 6, 1949, Osotimehin was a global leader of public health, women’s empowerment and young people, particularly focused on promoting human rights, including sexual and reproductive health and rights, as well as population and development.
After his appointment as UNFPA Executive Director, effective 2011, he spearheaded efforts by the international community to advance the milestone consensus of the International Conference on Population and Development, held in Cairo in 1994.
Upon moving into his second term, Osotimehin introduced new reforms that increased the effectiveness and efficiency of UNFPA and outlined a more robust vision for improving the lives of women, adolescents and youth around the world.
His leadership and advocacy with governments and other key stakeholders continued to focus on youth and voluntary family planning. He also, until his death, steered UNFPA’s humanitarian action and efforts around eliminating gender-based violence and other harmful practices.
Osotimehin’s professional background is in health and medicine. He had extensive knowledge of the global and national frameworks and processes that are critical to UNFPA’s work.
The UNFPA Executive Director served in various advisory boards and councils. Osotimehin chaired the World Economic Forum’s Global Agenda Council on the Demographic Dividend.
He was also a Global Agenda Trustee for the Forum’s Global Challenge on Economic Growth and Social Inclusion, and co-chairs the Family Planning 2020 Reference Group.
Osotimehin completed his medical studies at the University of Ibadan, Nigeria, in 1972 and received a doctorate in medicine from the University of Birmingham, United Kingdom, in 1979.
He was named Professor at the University of Ibadan in 1980 and headed the Department of Clinical Pathology before being elected Provost of the College of Medicine in 1990.
He served as Chairman and member of several academic and health organisations, including as Chairman of the National Action Committee on AIDS, between 2002 and 2007.
Osotimehin received the Nigerian national honour of Officer of the Order of the Niger, in December 2005.
He was married and had five children.

Author: News Editor

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