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The new Representative of the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) in the Lao PDR, Dr. Esther Muia, presented her letter of credentials as UNFPA representative to the Lao PDR Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs, Ms. Sounthone Xayachack in a ceremony held at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

Dr. Esther Muia (Kenya) assumed the post of UNFPA Representative in Lao PDR on 27 October, 2011. Ms. Muia joined UNFPA in March 2003 as HIV Adviser, Country Support Team in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia and provided technical assistance to countries in Africa as well as capacity building at the regional level on HIV and RH issues.

In 2007 she became the Deputy Representative in Tanzania and provided leadership in programme implementation in the context of Delivering as One UN as part of UN reforms. She was also trained by the United Nations System Staff College UNSSC as a UN wide resource person and facilitator for UNDAF and UN reform processes as well as change management, and has supported several countries since 2004.

Prior to joining UNFPA, she worked in the departments of Paediatrics, Obstetrics and Gynaecology, Internal Medicine and General Surgery at the national referral hospital, Kenyatta National Hospital and the Nairobi Hospital, lectured at the University of Nairobi in the Faculty of Medicine, and worked as a Programme Associate for RH research projects at the Population Council, East and Southern Africa.

Ms Muia holds a Doctorate in Medicine and a Masters in Public Health from the University of Nairobi, as well as a Doctorate in Public Health from the Bloomberg School of Public Health. Johns Hopkins University, USA.