Dr. Francisco Songane was Mozambique’s minister of health from 2000 to 2004. During his tenure, he oversaw the introduction of innovative strategies to tackle malaria and hepatitis B. In addition to ensuring the inclusion of HIV treatment in the public health system, he helped galvanize community partnerships and addressed rural and urban inequalities, resulting in reductions in maternal and neonatal mortality.Since 2004, Dr. Songane has held prominent roles in the field of women’s and children’s health.

As director of the Partnership for Maternal, Newborn and Child Health (PMNCH), Dr. Songane spearheaded the adoption of a resolution by the United Nations (UN) Human Rights Council on preventable maternal mortality, as well as the subsequent development of technical guidance, putting this issue high on the agenda of both health and human rights bodies. He has also been a board and executive committee member of Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance and is presently UNICEF’s representative to Angola.