Winnie Byanyima Appointed UNAids Executive Director

Winnie Byanyima has been appointed UNAIDS new Executive Director

Winnie Byanyima. Credit: OXFAM International

United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres has appointed Oxfam International executive director Winnie Byanyima as the new UNAids executive director, a spokesperson for Guterres said in a statement.

She takes over from Malian Michel Sidibé who stepped down in May, following accusations of serious mismanagement.

According to UNAIDS, Ms Byanyima brings a wealth of experience and commitment in harnessing the power of governments, multilateral agencies, the private sector and civil society to end the AIDS epidemic around the world.

Ms Byanyima has been the Executive Director of Oxfam International since 2013. Prior to that, she served for seven years as the Director of Gender and Development at the United Nations Development Programme.

Ms Byanyima began her career as a champion of marginalized communities and women 30 years ago as a member of parliament in the National Assembly of Uganda. In 2004, she became the Director of Women and Development at the African Union Commission, working on the Protocol on the Rights of Women in Africa, an international human rights instrument that became an important tool for reducing the disproportionate effect of HIV on the lives of women in Africa.

She holds an advanced degree in mechanical engineering (in energy conservation and the environment) from the Cranfield Institute of Technology and an undergraduate degree in aeronautical engineering from the University of Manchester.