The year 2020 has confirmed to the whole world that one of the most important and toughest portfolios to hold in a government is that of a Minister of Health.
In Africa, our health ministers have been at the forefront of the fight against the Corona Virus pandemic and with support from the Africa Centre for Disease Control and Prevention, there’s hope of Africans rising from this pandemic, scathed but stronger.
Primary among the roles of a health minister are overseeing the formulation of health policies, providing strategic direction of health delivery services, allocating resources and evaluating the health status of their countries. The COVID19 pandemic has added one more fundamental function to the list. Today, our health ministers have become warlords, assigned to lead various taskforces to fight the coronavirus pandemic in their respective countries.
In all the 54 African countries, health ministries are crucial members of cabinet. There, they convey health issues of the people to president and give status updates of health policies and projects.
In the face of this pandemic I decided to research into the professional and academic backgrounds of Africa’s Health Ministers. I discovered that only 36 out of 54 representing 67%of African health ministers have an educational background in health. The rest were appointed because of their political records and association with the powers that be.
It is interesting to note that in the Republic of Seychelles for instance, the President doubles as the health minister.
Another factor of keen interest is the fact that, as it stands, only 14 of Africa’s health ministers are female.
Nobody knows when COVID19 will die down or even if it will at all. While the world gunners its strengths to fight this war, how ready is Africa? How capable are Africa’s Health Ministers?
To read more about health ministers in Africa, I have published their profiles on www.princeakpah.com/2020healthministers
Below is the list of 2020 54 Health Ministers in Africa (27/04/20)
1. Abdellatif Mekki (Dr.) – Minister of Health, Tunisia
2. Abderrahmane Benbouzid (Dr.) – Minister of Health, Population and Hospital Reform, Algeria
3. Abdoulaye Sarr – Minister of Health and Social Welfare, Senegal
4. Ahmad Ahmad (Dr.) – Minister of Health, Madagascar
5. Ahmadou Lamin Samateh (Dr.) – Minister of Health, The Gambia
6. Akram Ali Eltom (Dr.) – Ministry of Health, Sudan
7. Alpha Tejan Wurie (Prof.) – Minister of Health and Sanitation, Sierra Leone
8. Amna Nurhusein – Minister of Health, Eritrea
9. Arlindo Nascimento do Rosário (Dr.) – Minister of Health and Social Security, Cape Verde
10. Armindo Tiago (Prof. Dr.) – Minister of Health, Mozambique
11. Chitalu Chilufya (Dr.) – Minister of Health, Zambia
12. Daniel Ngamije (Dr.) – Minister of Health, Rwanda
13. Djama Elmi Okieh (Dr.) – Minister of Health, Djibouti
14. Edgar Neves (Dr.) – Minister of Health, Sao Tome and Principe
15. Ehmid Bin Omar – Minister of Health, Libya
16. Elizabeth Acuei Yor – Minister of Health, South Sudan
17. Eugène Aouélé Aka (Dr.) – Minister of Health & Public Hygiene, Cote D’Ivoire
18. Fawziya Abikar (Dr.) – Minister of Health & Social Care, Somalia
19. Eteni Longondo (Dr.) – Minister of Public Health, DR Congo
20. Hala Zayed (Dr.) – Minister of Health and Population, Egypt
21. Igance Benjamin Hounkpatin (Dr.) – Minister of Health, Benin
22. Illiassou Mainassara (Dr.) – Minister of Public Health, Niger
23. Jacqueline Lydia Mikolo – Minister of Health and Population, Congo
24. Jappie Mhango – Minister of Health and Population, Malawi
25. Danny Faure – Minister of Health, Seychelles
26. Kailesh Kumar Singh Jagutpal (Dr.) – Minister of Health and Wellness, Mauritius
27. Kalumbi Shangula (Dr.) – Minister of Health and Social Services, Namibia
28. Khalid Ait Taleb (Dr.) – Minister of Health, Morocco
29. Kwaku Agyemang-Manu – Minister of Health, Ghana
30. Lemogang Kwape (Dr.) – Minister of Health and Wellness, Botswana
31. Léonie Claudine Sorgho/Lougue (Dr.) – Minister of Health, Burkina Faso
32. Lia Tadesse Gebremedhin (Dr.) – Minister of Health, Ethiopia
33. Lizzie Nkosi – Minister of Health, Eswatini
34. Loub Yakouti Zaidou – Minister of Health, Comoros
35. Mahamoud Youssouf Khayal – Minister of Public Health, Chad
36. Manaouda Malachie (Dr.) – Minister of Public Health, Cameroon
37. Maria Inácia Có Sanhá – Minister of Public Health, Family and Social Cohesion, Guinea Bissau
38. Max Limoukou (Dr.) – Minister of Health, Gabon
39. Michel Sidibe – Minister of Health and Social Affairs, Mali
40. Mohamed Nedhirou Ould Hamed (Dr.) – Minister of Health, Mauritania
41. Moustafa Mijiyawa (Dr.) – Minister of Health and Public Hygiene, Togo
42. Mutahi Kagwe – Cabinet Secretary for Health, Kenya
43. Nkaku Kabi – Minister of Health, Lesotho
44. Obadiah Moyo (Dr.) – Minister of Health and Child Care, Zimbabwe
45. Osagie Ehanire (Dr.) – Minister Health, Nigeria
46. Pierre Somse (Dr.) – Minister of Health, Central African Republic
47. Remy Lamah (Dr. Col.) – Minister of Health and Public Hygiene, Guinea
48. Ruth Jane Aceng (Dr.) – Minister of Health, Uganda
49. Salomon Nguema Owono – Minister for Health and Social Welfare, Equatorial Guinea
50. Silvia Lutucuta (Dr.) – Minister of Health, Angola
51. Thadee Ndikumana (Dr.) – Minister of Public Health and Fight against HIV &AIDS, Burundi
52. Ummy Mwalimu – Minister of Health, Community Development, Gender, Seniors and Children, Tanzania
53. Wilhelmina Jallah (Dr.) – Minister of Health, Liberia
54. Zweli Mkhize (Dr.) – Minister of Health, South Africa
Research and article by Prince Akpah, MD of Avance Media