29 April 2010 - Amman, Jordan - Dr Jorge Sampaio, the UN Secretary General's Special Envoy to Stop TB, joined by legendary footballer and Goodwill Ambassador against Tuberculosis Luis Figo, began a two-day visit to Jordan today. Their objective is to draw attention to tuberculosis (TB) as a serious public health problem in many countries of the region and the Islamic world, while highlighting Jordan's role as a leader in the fight against TB.
The visit has been organized under the auspices of Prime Minister Samir Al Rifaai, in coordination with various organizations including the National Tuberculosis Programme; the Jordanian Football Association, under the chairmanship of His Royal Highness Prince Ali Bin Al Hussein; and the Office of the WHO representative in Jordan.
Their mission includes visits to an SOS Children's Village, the Al Noor Hospital for the care of patients with TB and MDR-TB and the Petra Stadium. At the Horse Club of Jordan President Sampaio and Figo will give trophies to horse race winners and raise funds for TB.
A press conference on Friday evening will be followed by a gala dinner. Speakers at the press event will include Dr Sampaio; Figo; Dr Hussein Gezairy, WHO Regional Director for the Eastern Mediterranean; Dr. Nayef Al-Fayez, Minister of Health of Jordan; Jordanian actress Rania Ismail, a Goodwill Ambassador for TB control in Jordan; and Dr Khaled Abu Rumman, National TB Programme Manager.