GAVI has resumed its funding of Nigerian primary health care programmes.

Gavi Appoints David Marlow Interim CEO as Pate Quits

Six weeks before its new CEO was due to assume office, Global Vaccine Alliance Gavi has announced that Dr Muhammad Pate is no longer available for the position.

The appointment of Pate, a former Nigerian health minister, was announced in February following a meeting of the Gavi board. He was to replace current CEO Dr Seth Berkley, who has led the alliance for the past 12 years and is stepping down in August.

However, in a short statement on Monday, Gavi said that its board had appointed Chief Operating Officer David Marlow as interim CEO, following communication from Pate that he will not be able to join Gavi.

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“Dr Pate informed the Gavi Board Chair and Vice Chair that he has taken an incredibly difficult decision to accept a request to return and contribute to his home country, Nigeria. Gavi fully respects the decision and wishes Dr Pate the very best for the future,” said Gavi.

Gavi was unable to tell what position Pate would be assuming in Nigeria. However, the Harvard-based Pate has been active in promoting primary healthcare and was well-respected as the country’s health minister between 2011 and 2013.

The announcement came as the Gavi board was meeting this week in Geneva, amidst a Reuters report that a $2 billion surplus remains to be spent in COVAX, the WHO co-sponsored COVID-19 vaccine platform that Gavi co-operdinates alongside the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI) and the World Health Organisation (WHO).

SOURCE: Health Policy Watch