The new president of KenyaWilliam Ruto, met this Wednesday with the Deputy Prime Minister of Cuba, Inés María Chapman, and both agreed to strengthen bilateral cooperation in sectors such as health.
“The transfer of knowledge and skills in the health sector has strengthened relations between Kenya and Cuba. We look forward to greater cooperation between our nations,” Ruto said on his Twitter social network account, after receiving a courtesy visit from Chapman at his official residence in Nairobi.
Knowledge and capacity transfer in the health sector has strengthened Kenya-Cuba relations. We look forward to increased cooperation between our nations.
At State House, Nairobi with Deputy Prime Minister Ines Maria Chapman. pic.twitter.com/9TxygdNg0c
— William Samoei Ruto, PhD (@WilliamsRuto) September 14, 2022
The Embassy of Cuba in Kenya noted, for its part, also on Twitter that “both parties agreed on the desire to strengthen the links of cooperation between their nations.”
Chapman met with Ruto after attending his inauguration ceremony as Kenya’s fifth president on Tuesday.
This afternoon, the deputy prime minister of #Cuba 🇨🇺, @InesMChapman was received as a courtesy visit by the President of the Republic of Kenya 🇰🇪, @WilliamsRuto. Both parties agreed on the will to strengthen the bonds of cooperation between their nations. pic.twitter.com/HJHlYILcQ5
— Embassy of Cuba in Kenya (@EmbaCubaKenia) September 14, 2022
Last March, the two countries already agreed to deepen cooperation and the Kenyan Minister of Health, Mutahi Kagwe, then welcomed the success of the program launched by both countries in 2017.
That program made it easier for Cuban doctors to fill several vacant positions in Kenyan hospitals, as well as the transfer of Kenyan doctors to Cuba to receive specialized training.
Kagwe also reiterated Kenya’s commitment to achieving the release of the two kidnapped Cuban doctors by alleged members of the Somali jihadist group Al Shabab in Kenyan territory on April 12, 2019, who were later taken to Somalia.
The governments of Cuba, Kenya and Somalia say that, since the kidnapping, they have been making joint efforts to achieve his release.
The two doctors, of whose fate there is no news, were part of a contingent of a hundred Cuban specialists who arrived in Kenya in 2018 to improve access to specialized health services in that country.
It has not transpired whether Ruto and Chapman addressed the issue of the kidnapped Cuban doctors today.