Peter Khalil: I am deeply saddened at the passing of Dr Peter Salama in January. Dr Peter Salama was a great Australian, a truly inspirational figure. He lived a life in service of others. He led research that changed people’s lives for the better, including vaccine-preventable diseases, HIV, nutrition, war related mortality and violence, and refugee and emergency health. He contributed at the highest levels at the United Nations, the World Health Organization and UNICEF. He was recently executive director of the WHO division for universal health coverage, having joined as executive director for health emergencies. He led UNICEF’s global response to Ebola, serving as its representative in Ethiopia and Zimbabwe. He was also chief of health and nutrition in Afghanistan in 2002 and 2004.
No matter what his role, Peter Salama was always working to advance the health of people around the globe. We will remember Dr Salama for his service, compassion and tireless commitment to improving the lives of millions of people. We lost Peter too soon. My thoughts are with his wife and three children and his mother, Vivian. I extend my condolences to them. He will be missed. There will be a memorial service at Xavier College in Melbourne on Sunday 15 March. Here in this place, in the parliament of Australia, I acknowledge a great Australian and thank him for his service to humanity. Rest in peace, Dr Peter Salama.