U.N. Special Envoy for HIV/AIDS in Africa Stephen Lewis To Remain in Post Through 2006
U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan's office on Tuesday extended through 2006 Stephen Lewis' position as the United Nations special envoy for HIV/AIDS in Africa, despite his "pointed critiques" of world leaders, donor agencies and the United Nations for not providing adequate resources to fight the pandemic, Toronto's Globe and Mail reports. "It was extended with very gracious comment," Lewis said, adding, "Either the U.N. feels, as I hoped, that the criticisms would be seen to be part of the reform process, or maybe some people even thought that some of the criticisms were valid." In Lewis' book, "Race Against Time" -- which is a compilation of the five Massey Lectures he has delivered over the past year in Canada -- Lewis criticizes leaders from the Group of Eight industrialized nations for failing to uphold their funding commitments to African aid; the lending policies of the World Bank and International Monetary Fund; and the United Nations for neglecting African women, who have been impacted significantly by the pandemic. "I was apprehensive," Lewis said of talk that he would be removed from his post for his comments. However, he said he "never had a negative peep from a single soul, not one, in the U.N. in response" to the lectures. Lewis, who became U.N. special envoy in 2001, said he looks forward to remaining in his position through next year (Reinhart, Globe and Mail, 12/21).This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.