On Cuban doctors, their Kenyan foes have a plan – sabotage

What you need to know:

  • Whose idea was it to import Cuban doctors to Kenya? Whichever way you look at it, the decision to invite 100 foreign doctors to ostensibly come to alleviate and therefore ameliorate a deteriorating healthcare system in the country was a horribly ill-informed idea.
  • Uhuru Kenyatta must be in the know about the importation of the Cuban doctors: In March 2018, he was in Havana meeting with Fidel’s brother Ramon and the two must have talked about, among other things, the issue of the Cuban doctors.
  • The clinicians are miffed that the government finds it fit to pay foreign doctors exorbitantly, but will not do the same for Kenyan doctors, who toil hours on end with scarce resources and badly equipped hospitals, because resources meant to buy drugs and equipment have been squandered – by the politicians themselves, their friends and relatives.
  • The Kenyan medical personnel I have been talking to – consultants, clinical and medical officers, nurses, physicians and registrars have been telling me one constant thing: “These Cuban doctors will come here and their much taunted specialist work will collapse like a house of cards. They will not succeed.”

Whose idea was it to import Cuban doctors to Kenya? What was the rationale that informed the idea? Was the idea a collective decision by people who understand how the health sector functions, or was it an idea individually driven by people who thought they needed to “teach” Kenyan doctors a lesson? Was the idea informed through a well-thought-out proposal, perhaps on a (critical) need-basis expertise, whose viability was supported by professionals in the health sector, or was it made by a partisan political group engaged in a retributive and vengeful contest?


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