H.E Dr. Jean Kaseya was appointed Director-General of the Africa Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (Africa-CDC) during the thirty-sixth African Union Summit of Heads of State and Government in February 2023. Dr. Kaseya, a Congolese Medical Doctor with advanced degrees in Epidemiology and Community Health, brings to this position over 25 years of expertise in the field of public health, having held pivotal roles both at the national and international levels.
As the Director-General of Africa-CDC, Dr. Kaseya oversees the organisation’s fundamental political, strategic, and technical functions. At the forefront of his agenda is his commitment to advancing a transformative “New Deal” for Africa CDC, with the primary objective of strengthening health security across the continent. This undertaking involves establishing sustainable and innovative financing mechanisms, enhancing robust governance structures, cultivating technical expertise, strengthening health systems, and efficient response to health crises.
Before assuming his role as Director-General of Africa CDC, Dr. Kaseya had a distinguished career, holding multiple significant roles. At the national level, Dr. Kaseya has been entrusted with significant responsibilities, contributing his expertise to the health initiatives of his home country. These roles have included serving as a Senior Adviser to President Laurent Desire Kabila at a ministerial level, where he played a vital role in shaping healthcare policies and strategies. Additionally, he has taken on roles such as the Head of Routine Immunization within the National Expanded Programme on Immunization, showcasing his dedication to enhancing healthcare delivery at the grassroots level.
On the international stage, he has worked with prominent organisations such as UNICEF, Gavi, CHAI, and the World Health Organization, where he has been instrumental in driving forward various health initiatives of continental significance. Dr. Kaseya is a devoted family man and a proud father of three daughters.
Director General’s vision guided by 5 Cs
Community: Our communities confront health challenges, ranging from persisting maternal, newborn, child, and reproductive health issues and recurrent outbreaks to the severe repercussions of climate change. We are working on a grassroots community approach that focuses on improving primary health care. By adopting this bottom-up strategy, our objective is to identify and address public health issues at their origin, preventing them from developing into a crisis.
Connectivity: We are incorporating digital technology as rapidly as possible to better serve our mission. By harnessing digital connectivity and ensuring access to timely and accurate information and data, we position ourselves to devise and apply practical, evidence-based solutions to respond swiftly to public health needs.
Capacity: The foundation of successful public health initiatives in Africa rests upon robust institutions, a skilled and well-equipped workforce, sustainable financing mechanisms and the ability to locally produce medical products. Recognising this, we are committed to strengthening these essential capacities to ensure self-sufficiency and equitable access to life-saving interventions when and where they are most needed.
Collaboration: We are committed to involving all stakeholders in delivering on the continental public health agenda. We aim to create a sustainable impact on the continent’s public health landscape, ensuring that initiatives are well-supported, integrated and adapted to the local context.
Climate: pandemic preparedness and response is a critical facet of Africa CDC’s mission, as climate change poses a significant threat to the continent. Africa is experiencing the acute impacts of a changing climate, from soaring temperatures to escalating sea levels and a surge in extreme weather events. These environmental shifts have serious repercussions for the health and well-being of African populations, intensifying the urgency for disaster readiness.