Press Release

UNFPA Welcomes New Executive Director

19 November 2010

UNITED NATIONS, New York–UNFPA, the United Nations Population Fund, today welcomed the United Nations Secretary-General's announcement naming Dr. Babatunde Osotimehin as Executive Director of UNFPA, to succeed Thoraya Ahmed Obaid once her tenure ends on 31 December.

Dr. Babatunde Osotimehin, a Nigerian, is currently Professor of Medicine at the University of Ibadan, Nigeria, and the African Spokesperson for the Partnership for Maternal, Newborn and Child Health. Prior to this, he served as Minister of Health of Nigeria and was also Director-General of the country’s National Agency for the Control of HIV and AIDS. In addition, he was a Visiting Fellow at the Harvard Centre for Population and Development Studies.

"Dr. Osotimehin’s qualifications and extensive experience position him well to lead the global agenda for population and development and to promote the right to sexual and reproductive health," said Ms. Obaid. "We will work closely with him to ensure a successful transition."

Dr. Osotimehin, who will assume office on 1 January, will become the fourth Executive Director of UNFPA since it became operational in 1969.

Contact Information:

Abubakar Dungus
Tel: +1 212 297 5031

Omar Gharzeddine
Tel: +1 212 297 5028


News stories

"Former Nigerian health minister appointed new chief of UN Population Fund" — UN News Centre

"U.N. officials said the Nigerian was the top choice of many governments and nongovernmental organizations working on population issues." — Associated Press

"Women's Rights Advocates Applaud New Executive Director of United Nations Population Fund" — RH Reality Check


"On behalf of the people of the United States, we congratulate Dr. Babatunde Osotimehin on his appointment by the UN Secretary General as Executive Director of the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA)." — United States

"New head of UNFPA -  an opportunity to recommit to addressing unmet needs of women and children" — UN Foundation


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