Press Release

New High-Level Commission will ensure promises made at Nairobi Summit are kept as COVID-19 pandemic threatens to turn back the clock for women’s health and rights

17 September 2020

NEW YORK -- A new High-Level Commission of advocates, experts and activists was established today to help commitments to women’s health and rights made at the November 2019 Nairobi Summit on ICPD25 stay on track, even during the COVID-19 pandemic, which is blocking access to essential services, such as family planning and antenatal care.

The Nairobi Summit secured billions of dollars in commitments from governments, the private sector, foundations and others. It rallied support to achieve “three zeros” – zero unmet need for family planning, zero preventable maternal deaths, zero gender-based violence and harmful practices – in 10 years.

UNFPA, the United Nations sexual and reproductive health agency, and the governments of Denmark and Kenya convened the Summit 25 years after the landmark International Conference on Population and Development, which culminated in a global agreement that sexual and reproductive health and rights are a necessity for growth and prosperity. But progress in securing these rights has stalled.

“Since the Nairobi Summit, the road to 2030 and the achievement of sexual and reproductive health and rights for all has grown steeper due to COVID-19,” says UNFPA Executive Director Dr. Natalia Kanem. “Yet we continue to forge ahead, to back up words with deeds and action on the ground. The new High-Level Commission will help all of us who made commitments in Nairobi keep those promises.”

Like the delegates at the Nairobi Summit, the membership of the High-Level Commission is radically inclusive. Chaired by H.E. Mr. Jakaya Kikwete, Former President of the United Republic of Tanzania, and H.E. Michaëlle Jean, 27th Governor General of Canada, its members range from former heads of state to grassroots activists and youth.

The Commission will monitor and report on progress towards fulfilling the 1,250 commitments made at the Nairobi Summit, and in particular the 12 global commitments contained in the Nairobi Statement on ICPD25, and make recommendations for removing bottlenecks so that the sexual and reproductive health and rights community maintains its momentum towards a world of rights and choices for all.

More information about the High-Level Commision, its members and activities can be found here:

For media and interview enquiries, please contact:
Eddie Wright: +1 917 831 2074; 


From Commitments to Action: 

High-Level Commission on the Nairobi Summit on ICPD25 Follow-up

Commissioners (last updated: 11 May 2021)


1. H.E. Dr. Jakaya Mrisho Kikwete, Former President, United Republic of Tanzania

2. H.E. The Right Honorable Michaëlle Jean, Former Governor General and Commander in chief of Canada; former Secretary General of the International Organization of la Francophonie



3. HRH Crown Princess Mary, Crown Princess of Denmark, Countess of Monpezat

4. Mr. Hatim Aznague, Founder & President of the “Sustainable Development's Youth” Association

5. Dr. Alvaro Bermejo, Director General, International Planned Parenthood Federation (IPPF) 

6. Mr. Rudelmar Bueno de Faria, General Secretary (CEO), Action by Churches Together (ACT) Alliance  

7. Dr. Franka Cadée, President, International Confederation of Midwives

8. Dr. Dawn Casey, Deputy CEO, National Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Organisation

9. Ms. Alexandra Chichikova, Miss Wheelchair World 2017 and health advocate 

10. Mr. Martin Chungong, Secretary General, Inter-Parliamentary Union 

11. Ms. Jaha Dukureh, CEO, Safe Hands for Girls 

12. Dr. Mary-Ann Etiebet, AVP, Health Equity & Lead, Merck for Mothers

13. Professor Senait Fisseha, Director, International Programs, Susan Thomas Buffett Foundation and Chief Adviser to the WHO Director-General

14. Ms. Lorence Kabasele Birungi, President of AfriYAN for Eastern and Southern Africa

15. Mr. Martin Karadzhov, Board member and Chair of the Youth Steering Committee of ILGA World (The International Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans and Intersex Association)

16. Mr. Sangeet Kayastha, Coordinator, Y-PEER Asia-Pacific Center

17. Mr. Hans Linde, President, Swedish Association for Sexuality Education (RFSU)

18. Hon. Angélica Lozano, Lawyer, civic activist and Senator of Colombia

19. Ms. Latanya Mapp Frett, President and CEO, Global Fund for Women

20. Ms. Lucy Mulenkei, Executive Director, Indigenous Information Network

21. Professor Friday Okonofua, Professor of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, University of Benin, Nigeria

22. Dr. Sara Pantuliano, Chief Executive, Overseas Development Institute

23. Ms. Bandana Rana, Member, United Nations CEDAW Committee

24. Professor Gamal Serour, Professor of Obstetrics and Gynecology and Director of the International Islamic Center for Population Studies and Research, Al-Azhar University

25. Mr. Henk Siebren de Jong, CEO, Philips Domestic Appliances

26. Professor Keizo Takemi, Member, House of Councillors in the Japanese parliament and WHO Goodwill Ambassador

27.  Dr. Nahid Toubia, Director of the Institute for Reproductive Health & Rights in Sudan

28. Ms. Jayathma Wickramanayake, United Nations Secretary-General’s Envoy on Youth

29. H.E. Ms. Lindiwe Zulu, Chairperson, Partners in Population and Development; Minister of Social Development, South Africa

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