January 14 marks the first anniversary of the tragic loss of Dr Alemayehu Seifu, the former AMREF Country Director for South Sudan. Dr Alemayehu was shot dead by unknown assailants on the evening of Saturday, January 14, 2012 at the gate of his house in Malakia area, on the outskirts of the capital city, Juba.
A year has quickly passed, but colleagues in AMREF South Sudan and the wider AMREF family globally still miss and fondly remember his gentle spirit, energy and drive. His ever smiling and jovial nature with colleagues, partners and the communities he served will always be treasured. We remember words that colleagues used to describe the late Alemayehu on learning of his tragic death - hard working, inspirational, insightful, collaborative, dedicated servant of public health, commitment, and passion - which all convey the admiration we felt for him. We join his wife and family in honouring him on this day and comfort them in knowing that he will forever remain in our thoughts.
To mark the first anniversary, a memorial prayer service, in collaboration with the Orthodox Church and the Ethiopian community, will be held in Juba on Sunday, 13 January with another one being held at the National Health Training Institute, Maridi. AMREF is also in the process of naming a building after the late Alemayehu to honour his service to AMREF and tremendous contribution to the communities that we work with in South Sudan.
Alemayehu was appointed AMREF Country Director in South Sudan in January 2011, after serving as Deputy Country Director in Ethiopia, a position he held from September 2007.
Prior to joining AMREF, Alemayehu, a medical doctor who held a Masters Degree in Public Health, worked with the World Health Organisation (WHO) as regional surveillance coordinator in Ethiopia Country Office, CARE International and Amhara Regional Health Bureau, Ethiopia.
May his soul rest in peace.