Berlin, 11.02.2022 - The German Network against Neglected Tropical Diseases mourns the death of Dr. Mwelecele Ntuli Malecela. She worked tirelessly worldwide to combat neglected tropical diseases and was a main driver in launching the WHO-NTD Roadmap 2030. She studied zoology at the University of Dar es Salaam/Tanzania and joined the National Institute for Medical Research (NIMR) in 1987, where she worked on lymphatic filariasis research at the Amani Centre. From 1990 to 1995, she studied and obtained her PhD at the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine. She held numerous leadership positions as Director of Research Coordination and Promotion at NIMR (1998), Director of the Lymphatic Filariasis Programme (2000), then Director General of NIMR - the first woman to hold this position. In 2018, Director-General of WHO, Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus appointed her as Director of the Department of Neglected Tropical Diseases Control at the organisation's headquarters in Geneva.
In Germany, she participated in numerous events of the DNTDs at the World Health Summit or in Parliamentary Evenings with the Parliamentary Advisory Council. With her, we lose a dedicated, warm-hearted comrade-in-arms in the fight against neglected tropical diseases.
Dr Mwele Malecela died of cancer on 10 February 2022 in Zurich.