Juan Juan Almeida, 3 October 2017 — Kenya and Mozambique indefinitely suspended their collaboration with Cuban medical services which were under contract in both countries.
The announcement was “restricted information” distributed through emails send to the heads of all the provincial health services, between 25-27 September, according to Marti Noticias.
The sudden action is a concern to the Cuban government, which has gained international recognition and credibility through its health programs.
The email explained, briefly, that Mozambique refuses to contract through “More Doctors” (General Integral Medicine), and until further notice Kenya has stopped receiving new Cuban health workers.
This is a hard blow to the program of exporting Cuban doctors, which generates both income and gratitude for the “white coat” diplomatic policy.
In 2016, the program of professional services — primarily medical — generated $11.5 billion dollars in income for the Cuban treasury, a figure that greatly exceeds the profit fro tourism, which brings the national economy $2.8 billion.
The Ministry of Public Health (MINSAP) maintains strict secrecy about the causes that gave rise to the unexpected and simultaneous revocation of agreements with two countries that maintain excellent relations with the island.
It is worth noting that Cuba and Kenya signed a Memorandum of Understanding at the 70th World Health Assembly in Geneva on May 24, with the aim of encouraging the start of medical cooperation in that African nation. And on June 18, Cuban President Raul Castro received his Mozambican counterpart, Filipe Jacinto Nyusi, and the official press reported that both leaders spoke in a fraternal atmosphere about the state of relations, historical ties, collaboration and international issues.
The sudden decision of both African nations not only surprised the Cuban authorities, but also the 602 doctors who were planning to travel to Kenya this October 2.