Sir Ali was recognised by the EDCTP (European and Developing Countries Clinical Trials partnership) at a ceremony on 18 October officiated by the President of Mozembique, His Excellency Filipe Nyusi.
As Professor of Infectious Diseases and International Health, Sir Ali has been involved in research, training and advocacy work over 30 years which has led to breakthroughs in tuberculosis, TB/HIV co-infections and infectious diseases with epidemic potential, as well as improvements in the health of disadvantaged populations.
In announcing the Prize, the EDCTP cited Sir Ali’s ‘outstanding scientific research, health services capacity building, training and advocacy achievements in Africa, which has had a significant impact on the wellbeing of the African population.'
Commenting Sir Ali said:
`Prizes do not reflect individual efforts alone. I would like to dedicate this honour to my family, staff, teams, friends and colleagues from across the world who I have had the privilege to work with on a range of research, capacity development, advocacy and charity activities focussed on improving infectious diseases health services, and the lives of poor and disadvantaged populations worldwide.’
Sir Ali added: `I feel extremely humbled and honoured and to receive this very prestigious prize – especially since Dr Pascoal Mocumbi is globally distinguished and respected for his exemplar role model scientific and political work.’
Sir Ali has set up and driven forward numerous international initiatives to tackle poverty-related and infectious diseases in Africa and beyond. He has been responsible for the development of equitable South-North partnership models in which researchers across multiple continents including Africa collaborate on research, capacity building and empowerment of local researchers in Africa to become leaders. His EDCTP funded Pan-African Network for Rapid Research, Response, Relief and Preparedness for Infectious Disease Epidemics (PANDORA-ID-NET) is taking forward pan-African research collaborations on emerging and re-emerging infections including Covid-19.
The EDCTP is a partnership between countries in Europe and sub-Saharan Africa, supported by the EU. The prize is in recognition of Dr Pascoal Mocumbi, EDCTP’s first High Representative and former Prime Minister of Mozambique, for his outstanding contribution to fostering global partnerships in health research and his support for capacity strengthening in Africa.
Sir Ali has numerous retired and current FRCpath colleagues and friends. He worked on autopsies in Africa and has led important COVID-19 autopsy work in Zambia and Italy.