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Head, Division Of Laboratory Services (word) at West Africa Health Organisation

The Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) is a regional group of fifteen West African countries. Founded on 28 May 1975, with the signing of the Treaty of Lagos, its mission is to promote economic integration across the region. Considered one of the pillars of the African Economic Community, the organization was founded in order to achieve collective self-sufficiency for its member states by creating a single large trading bloc through an economic and trading union. It also serves as a peacekeeping force in the region. The organization operates officially in three co-equal languages French, English, and Portuguese.


About the Role:


Under the direct supervision of the Executive Director of the ECOWAS Regional Centre for Disease Surveillance and Control, the incumbent will work closely with the Heads of other Technical Divisions of the ECOWAS Regional Centre for Disease Surveillance and Control

He shall ensure proper coordination of laboratory activities of the ECOWAS Regional Laboratories Network.

Duties and Responsibilities

The incumbent shall:

  • Ensure proper coordination of the Regional Laboratories Network;
  • Support the actual integration of laboratories into the ECOWAS Regional disease Surveillance system;
  • Contribute to strengthening of laboratories governance and capacity;
  • Provide technical support to Reference Laboratories towards implementing a quality assurance policy;
  • Participate in the periodic assessment of the Regional Reference Laboratories for the renewal of their accreditations;
  • Ensure delivery of timely and complete biological information by the Reference Laboratories through NCIs Laboratories Focal Points;
  • Ensure proper publication of the Weekly Epidemiological Bulletins;
  • Work with Surveillance, Alert and Response Units to set up an efficient Warning System supported by quality laboratory services;
  • Coordinate laboratory activities in the event of epidemics especially, by deploying biologists and / or mobilizing a mobile laboratory for easy field diagnosis.
  • Ensure consistent and quality technical network activities and produce regular reports documenting technical assistance-related results;
  • Help mobilize resources to support the Regional Laboratories Network’s activities ;
  • Be ready to travel to ECOWAS Countries and perform all other tasks assigned by the RCDC Authorities.



The applicant must have:

  • A Bachelor’s degree in Medicine or Pharmacy with specialization in Medical Biology, Public Health or Epidemiology from a recognized University.
  • At least 10 years of effective professional experience, including two years at a supervisory level, in management and implementation of complex public health programs involving diagnosis laboratories for epidemic-prone diseases and research on communicable diseases and epidemics in sub-Saharan Africa;
  • Possession of higher degree would reduce the required professional experience to eight (8) years;
  • Good experience in surveillance and control of emerging and re-emerging diseases particularly in an international reference laboratory;
  • National and international experience in deployment of multidisciplinary investigation teams, especially in West Africa;
  • Proven experience in implementation of disease surveillance and control strategies, programs administration, especially on the international stage;
  • Strong ability for strategic analysis, summary and report writing;
  • Ability to organize, supervise and manage a multidisciplinary scientific team;
  • Be ICT compliant;
  • Proven leadership attributes, demonstrate team spirit and ready to work with high-level professionals such as clinicians, biologists, program managers and policy makers;
  • Capacity to create and maintain good interpersonal relations and have technical knowledge for advocacy;
  • Excellent communication and negotiation skills as well as good knowledge of health policies and work environment of laboratory services in ECOWAS countries;
  • Demonstrate ability to foster partnerships and collaborate effectively with implementing partners;
  • Ability to work under pressure and show respect within a multicultural and multidisciplinary team;
  • Ability to adapt to the professional context and create an environment conducive for results-based work.


Candidate must not be over 50 (fifty) years of age at the point of recruitment and must be an ECOWAS citizen.


Must be fluent in one of the official languages of the Community; English, French and Portuguese. A working knowledge of another would be an advantage.

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