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Remember the Fallen

Ethiopian Airlines Crash, 10 March 2019

Marcelino Tayob, Senior Advisor, Regional Office for Africa, ITU

Marcelino Tayob

He was a great golf player. He loved deep-sea fishing. His retirement project was to refurbish his boat and take up ocean fishing. He was a fantastic colleague, a dear friend and a gentle, kind, wonderful man.

Marcelino, a senior advisor with the ITU Regional Office for Africa, was considered the institutional memory of the office. He was a reference for many. There was no question that Marcelino could not answer: he was always prepared and extremely knowledgeable. And always willing to lend a hand.

He was highly regarded and respected across the continent and was instrumental in the establishment of Telecommunication Regulatory Authorities in Africa. His last major accomplishment was the set-up of the Regulatory Authority in South Sudan.

Marcelino provided invaluable help and expertise to countries in preparing broadband plans and policies and he had signed up to lead one of Africa’s ITU Regional Initiatives, “Developing Digital Economies and Fostering Innovation in Africa”, over the next four years.

Marcelino firmly believed in the importance of capacity building and the development of digital skills. He led the coordination of the Africa Network of ITU Centers of Excellence, whose aim is to support capacity development in the field of information and communication technologies by offering continuous education in the ICT field.

Marcelino, a national from Mozambique, joined ITU in 1997 as a Senior Advisor for Eastern and Southern Africa Region in Harare, Zimbabwe.

In 2009, he moved to the ITU Regional Office for Africa in Addis Ababa.  

Prior to joining ITU Marcelino worked with several organizations including Telecommunicaçoes de Moçambique, the Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA) and the Southern Africa Transport and Communications Commission.

Marcelino was also a regular member of the ITU golf team at the United Nations Inter Agency Games. He participated for the first time in 2015 in in Spain. For him golf was more than a sport, it was a way to concentrate and, as he once said, to “refocus my energy and mind on the positive side of life”.

On 10 March 2019, he boarded Ethiopian Airlines flight 302 to Nairobi to attend the Steering Committee of the Centers of Excellence. He was travelling with his ITU colleague, Maygenet Adebe.

Marcelino was no stranger to tragedy. He lost his only son Fabio in a tragic car accident in 2006. Marcelino’s legacy will continue to live: through his loved ones, his friends and colleagues and the many lives he has touched.

Marcelino is survived by his wife Anabela.

Biographical information and photo provided by ITU.