The World Health Organization (WHO) has appointed two women leaders to head investigations into allegations of sexual abuse and exploitation by aid workers during the recent Ebola outbreak in the Democratic Republic of Congo.
Congolese human rights advocate, Julienne Lusenge, and former Nigerien minister, Aïchatou Mindaoudou, will co-chair the commission.
The commission will “swiftly establish the facts, identify and support survivors, ensure that any ongoing abuse has stopped, and hold perpetrators to account”, according to a WHO statement.
A year-long investigation published last month by The New Humanitarian and the Thomson Reuters Foundation indicated that aid workers who identified themselves as WHO staff sexually abused women during the Ebola outbreak in the country.
Local women were allegedly plied with drinks, “ambushed” in hospitals, forced to have sex, and two became pregnant.
The allegations cover the period between 2018 and March 2020.