Moncef Slaoui, 61, will leave his role as chairman of the board of Galvani Bioelectronics “effective immediately”, GSK said in a statement to the stock market.
The west London based pharma group said the termination follows the receipt of a letter containing allegations of sexual harassment and inappropriate conduct towards an employee of GSK by Dr Slaoui occurred several years ago.
Slaoui worked at GSK for almost 30 years, becoming the head of its vaccines department, before retiring in 2017.
He was picked by President Trump to head the US federal government’s multi-million dollar Covid vaccine development project last May, and resigned on January 12 a week before Trump’s term ended.
He has since been advising European leaders on the vaccine rollout across Europe.
Trump described Slaoui as “one of the most respected men in the world in the production and, really, on the formulation of vaccines”.
In a statement issued today, GSK said: “Upon receipt of the letter, the GSK Board immediately initiated an investigation with an experienced law firm to investigate the allegations. The investigation of Dr Slaoui’s conduct substantiated the allegations and is ongoing.
“Dr Slaoui’s behaviours are wholly unacceptable. They represent an abuse of his leadership position, violate company policies, and are contrary to the strong values that define GSK’s culture.
“The company expects everyone at GSK to behave in accordance with its values, especially its leaders where its standards are the highest. Sexual harassment and any abuse of leadership position are strictly prohibited and will not be tolerated.”
Christopher Corsico, SVP Development at GSK and a current member of the Galvani Board, has been appointed as the new Chair of the Board of Galvani.
Galvani Bioelectronics is a medical research company formed through a partnership between GSK and Verily Life Sciences (formerly Google Life Sciences) to develop bioelectronic medicines to treat chronic diseases.
Slaoui was being reached for comment.