Thursday, September 21, 2023

Meet Professor Ali Pate – President Tinubu’s Alleged Minister For Health

President Bola Ahmed Tinubu has reportedly forwarded the name of Dr. Muhammad Ali Pate to the Senate to be confirmed as a Ministers.

Pate, whose appointment will be announced today, has reportedly been penciled down as the Minister of Health.

Pate, a former Minister of State for Health under the Goodluck Jonathan administration, is a renowned public health expert and politician.

See profile of Pate below:

In February, 2023, Pate was appointed Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of GAVI, the Vaccine Alliance, which works to provide vaccines in low-income countries.

GAVI was set up as a Global Health Partnership in 2000 with the goal of creating equal access to new and underused vaccines for children living in the world’s poorest countries.

He was to take up the top global position on August 3, 2023.

However, on Monday, June 26, 2023, GAVI announced Pate’s decision to decline his appointment as its next CEO.

Dr Muhammad Ali Pate, who was selected following a yearlong recruitment process personally overseen by the Chair of the Gavi Board, Professor José Manuel Barroso, is a medical doctor trained in both internal medicine and infectious diseases, with an MBA from Duke University in the United States, Dr Pate served as Nigeria’s Minister of State for Health between 2011 and 2013. In this role, he led a flagship initiative to revive routine vaccinations and primary health care, chaired a presidential taskforce to eradicate polio and introduced new vaccines into the country.

While serving as Global Director for Health, Nutrition and Population of the World Bank and Director of the Global Financing Facility at the World Bank between 2019 and 2021, he led the Bank’s US$ 18 billion COVID-19 global health response and represented the Bank on various boards, including those of Gavi, the Global Fund, CEPI and UNAIDS. He was the Julio Frenk Professor of Public Health Leadership at Harvard Chan School of Public Health and has served on several health-focused boards and expert panels in the public, private and not-for-profit sectors during his career.

Muhammad Ali Pate is a physician and former politician, and Julio Frenk Professor of Public Health Leadership at the Harvard T. H. Chan School of Public Health. Prior to this he was the the Global Director for Health, Nutrition and Population at the World Bank Group and Director of the Global Financing Facility for Women, Children and Adolescents. After graduating from the Ahmadu Bello University (ABU) medical school in Kaduna State, Nigeria. he moved to Gambia, where he worked in rural hospitals for a time. Thereafter, he completed his residency at the University of Rochester in the USA. Dr Pate is certified by the American Board as a MD in Internal Medicine and Infectious Diseases and also has an MBA in Health Sector Concentration from Duke University in the USA. Previously, he also studied at University College London and has a Masters Degree in Health System Management from the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine.

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In 2008 he was appointed Head of the National Primary Health Care Agency (NPHCDA), a post he held until 2011. At that time there was a polio epidemic in Nigeria and, during his time in office, he instigated a policy whereby respected leaders in relevant areas helped encourage immunisation; cases of wild poliomyelitis decreased from 803 at the end of 2008, to just 11 in 2010.

When the NPHCDA merged with the National Programme on Immunisation (NPI), Muhammad Ali Pate was instrumental in setting out the transformation agenda to manage outstanding issues. He also implemented pioneering policies, such as training middle management for primary health care and the collaboration between public and private sectors through partnership. Further, he also developed the Midwives’ Service Scheme (MSS), to address the national high maternal and child morbidity and mortality rate in Nigeria, in order that those in rural and outlying areas receive the help they need.

In 2011 he was appointed as Minister of Health in Nigeria, following his success as Executive Director of the National Primary Health Care Development Agency (NPHCDA), Abuja. In July 2013 he resigned from his ministerial post to become Professor at Duke University Global Health Institute in the USA.

In 2012 he was awarded Harvard Health Leader by the Harvard Ministerial Leadership Program.

In 2015 he began a term of three years as Chief Executive Officer of Big Win Philanthropy, an independent foundation investing in children and young people in developing countries, helping them improve their lives and maximise opportunities of long term, economic growth in their particular regions.

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In 2016 he also gave a course, ‘Leadership Development in Global Health: Building Community Trust Networks’ in his additional role as a Richard L. and Ronay A. Menschel Senior Leadership Fellow at Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health.

In 2019, he was appointed Julio Frenk Professor of Public Health Leadership at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health.

He has served on various national and international panels, including the First WHO Health Systems Research Forum, 2009, in Montreux, Switzerland; Mckinsey’s Geneva Health Forum 2009, in Switzerland; Ernst Strungman Forum, 2010, in Frankfurt, Germany; China-Africa Roundtable for Health, 2010; Pacific Summit, 2011, in Seattle, WA, USA. Since 2017 he has been a member of the Board of Directors of the American International Health Alliance, Additionally he is member of the following: Board for the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria; the Steering Committee on Assessment of Impact of Polio Eradication on Routine Immunisation, for the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation; Advisory Board of Merck for Mothers; the Steering Committee for Primary Health Care Performance Initiative (PHCPI); Board of the Private Health Sector Alliance of Nigeria.

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