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General News of Monday, 14 January 2019

Source: Emmanuel Selasie

Ghana-Cuba relations could go beyond health, education - Envoy

The Cuban Ambassador to Ghana, Pedro Luiz Gonzalez is advocating a renewed bilateral relation between his country and Ghana to transcend education and healthcare which have been the traditional areas of co-operation between the two nations.

Appearing on the maiden edition of Metro TV’s latest current affairs programme “Diplomatic Affairs” on Sunday, Ambassador Gonzalez said Tourism, Coastal Conservation, Sugar production and a common fight against Malaria could define a new Ghana-Cuba relations in addition to the provision of scholarship for studies as well as the supply of medical personnel to improve healthcare which has underpinned the 60 years of friendship.

Ghana became the first African country to recognise the Cuban Revolution in 1959, proceeded to exchange diplomatic missions in Accra and Havana and has since maintained an interrupted special relationship.

Through its Medical Brigade, Cuba has been supplying Ghana with medical doctors most of who serve in rural and unserved parts of the country where their local counterparts decline posting.

The decades old support has aided Ghana’s health delivery significantly, bridging the already unimpressive patient-doctor ratio.

In the field of education, there are currently 243 Ghanaian students studying in Cuba, mostly in Medicine and 229 of them are expected home after graduation this year.

Ghana’s Foreign Minister, Shirley AyorkorBotchwey paid a Working Visit to Cuba last September at the invitation of her Cuban counterpart, Bruno Rodriguez Parrilla.

The 5-day visit was used to strengthen relations between the two countries.
“Apart from our traditional areas of education and health, there are many other areas we can collaborate. For instance, Ghana is seeking is improve and advance its tourism sector by cleaning its beaches. Sanitation can be used to promote tourism as we do in Cuba”, Ambassador Gonzalez said.

On the status of 100 Cubans living in Ghana, Ambassador Gonzalez told Host Harriet Nartey, “they live here without any problem”.

The Caribbean Island has a population of 11 million and together with Ghana are both members of the Non-Aligned Movement and the United Nations.

‘Diplomatic Affairs’ airs on Sundays between 6.30 pm and and seeks to celebrate Ghana’s foreign and diplomatic relations with other countries and international organisations.

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