Ethiopia Urge WHO to Investigate its Director-General for his Misconduct and Dereliction of Professional Duties
The Ethiopian Foreign Ministry has responded to criticism of its conduct in the Tigray region by the director-general of the World Health Organization (WHO) earlier this week with a letter containing multiple allegations of misconduct by the WHO head. The Foreign Ministry drew attention to how he’s consistently abused his high office to meddle in his homeland’s internal and foreign affairs. He’s also accused of continuing to remain a member of the terrorist-designated TPLF that’s responsible for bringing untold suffering upon millions of people in northern Ethiopia as a result of the war that it started in early November 2020.
The Foreign Ministry has written scathing criticism on WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus to the WHO’s executive board, in which it accuses Tedros of not living up to the integrity and professional expectations required of his office, despite Ethiopia having nominated him for the global health body’s top job.
The objection, which comes after Tedros, who comes from the Tigray region sharply criticized the Ethiopian government at a press conference in Geneva, details other examples of the WHO head. For instance, he’s accused of inflating the emergency level in Ethiopia in order to warrant a humanitarian intervention. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs said that he then used these false assessments to mislead the UN Security Council. The WHO Director-General, according to the objection, also uses his platform to mobilize the international community against his homeland on top of providing financial and technical support to the TPLF. It’s for these reasons why Ethiopia is urging a full investigation into his misconduct.
Furthermore, the accusation made in the letter was that Tedros had tasked WHO staff in Ethiopia with worsening the conflict to such a degree that the international community would consider intervening. The letter further claims that Tedros had been interfering in the internal affairs of Ethiopia, including in its relations with neighboring Eritrea, and that Tedros was still an active member and supporter of the TPLF, the former ruling party of Ethiopia that is now engaged in a civil war against the government in Addis Ababa and is deemed a terrorist organization by the Ethiopian government.
The letter ends with a request that the executive board commission an investigation into its director-general’s misconduct and dereliction of professional duties. There has been no response so far from the WHO or Tedros to the Foreign Ministry’s claims.
According to Andrew Korybko, an American political analyst these are shocking violations of the WHO’s own code of conduct risk ruining its reputation in the eyes of the world. The UN and its associated agencies are supposed to be neutral in all respects lest they lose credibility and thus find it much more difficult to carry out their important functions as stipulated under international law. He further said:
Regrettably, Dr. Tedros exploited the global attention given to him by his prestigious office and the COVID-19 pandemic to aggressively lobby on behalf of the TPLF’s terrorist campaign and to cover up its countless crimes against humanity throughout the course of the conflict.
The global masses no longer regard him as a neutral technocrat like he’s supposed to be since he’s proven himself hellbent on becoming the TPLF’s top global activist against his own homeland and its people. There’s a reason why that terrorist-designated group’s supporters sing his praises on social media. That’s because they regard him as one of the TPLF’s leaders, which is the same reason why most Ethiopians condemn him. The WHO’s Director-General has thus unquestionably become a divisive partisan force in total contradiction of his professional mandate to focus solely on health-related issues.
The full statement issued by the Ministery of Foreign Affairs reads as follows:
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia presents its compliments to the Executive Board of the World Health Organization (WHO) and hereby sends this communication in relation to the moral, legal and professional standing of the seating Director-General of WHO. Mr. Tedros Adhanom Gebreyesus (Ph.D.).
Ethiopia had the great honor of nominating Dr. Tedros for the highest office in the global health body. We also remain grateful for the community of nations that elected and all professionals in WHO that granted Ethiopia’s candidate their professional backing.
Unfortunately, Dr. Tedros has not lived up to the integrity and professional expectations required from his office and position. He has been interfering in the internal affairs of Ethiopia, including Ethiopia’s relations with the State of Eritrea. He continues as an active member and supporter of TPLF that is proscribed as a terrorist group by the Ethiopian parliament.
He uses his office to advance his personal political interest at the expense of the interest of a UN member state. We had remained tolerant in the face of this violation, with the hope that the Director-General would cease his misconduct but to no avail. In his media engagements, Dr. Tedors provides encouragement to TPLF. He celebrates what is presumed to be a military success of TPLF.
He provides consolations to members of the group. He is also engaged in a selective outrage where he discriminately addresses the humanitarian concerns in Ethiopia.
Through his acts, he spread harmful misinformation and compromised WHO’s reputation, independence and credibility. This is evident from the social media postings of Dr. Tedros that openly endorse the terror perpetrated by TPLF against the Ethiopian people.
Abusing his position as the Director-General of WHO, Dr. Tedros assigns stalls in WHO’s country office in Ethiopia with a task of executing the plot to inflate the emergency level in Ethiopia to warrant “humanitarian intervention”.
This staff assigned for this very purpose reported statistics on the number of people needing emergency assistance as 32 million while the actual number was 1.8 million. This misrepresentation of facts is used to misinform the UN Security Council.
This staff was assigned to Ethiopia for a limited period and had directly reported to Dr. Tedros and operates outside of the regular working methods of the organization, including the WHO country office. This transgression went beyond WHO and included staff of the UN Country Office that received directions and reported to Dr. Tedros on matters outside of the mandate of WHO. In a manner that denigrates the integrity of the UN system and the work of other offices.
Dr. Tedros uses his platform to mobilize the UN community against Ethiopia. He receives instructions according to the internal division of labor within TPLF. He also reports to the so-called “Office of External Affairs of TPLF” and he provides technical and financial support to the activities of the branch in Europe.
Among his diplomatic support to TPLF includes, using his networks as DG of WHO to present and defend the conducts of TPLF and accuse and tarnish the name of Ethiopia. Among several others, Dr. Tedros violated rule 5.7 of the Code of Ethics and Professional Conduct of WHO on conflict of interest; Rule 5.8 on relations with governments and political activity; Rule 5.9 on relations with non-state actors; Rule 5.15.4 on use of information, publications and media: emails and social media.
Ethiopia regrets these developments that require it to file an official objection on the standing of a senior UN official who occupies office by its own nomination. However, we see no option than bringing this matter to the Executive Board for the requisite measure to rectify the mishaps and ensure WHO’s organizational integrity.
The Government of Ethiopia is in the process of instituting the applicable legal proceeding against Dr. Tedros to ensure his accountability. In this regard, we urge you to commission an investigation on the Director-General to identify the full extent of his misconduct and violation of his professional and legal responsibility as provided under the Standards of Conduct for the International Civil Service, staff rules and regulations of WHO, and Code of Ethics and Professional Conduct of WHO and inform us the measure taken in this regard.
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of e Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia avails this opportunity to renew to the Executive Board of the World Health Organization the assurances of its highest consideration.