The outgoing Cuban Charge d’ Affairs to Liberia, MsC Pedro l. Despaigne Gonzalez has extolled the cordial working relationships between the governments of Cuba and Liberia. Mr. Gonzalez, who arrived in the country last year at the time of the Ebola crisis, recalled that his country responded to calls from, the U.N. Secretary General and President Sirleaf to help with the health crisis at the time.
He said on short notice, he arrived with 49 doctors and nurses in the country on a chartered flight from Cuba to Liberia in October last year while there was an advanced team to pave the way for the doctors and nurses.
He added that several other doctors and nurses were also sent to Guinea and Sierra Leone which have also been hard hit by the Ebola virus.
Considering himself a “Soldier of Diplomacy, “Mr. Gonzalez said he was happy that the bilateral relationships between the two countries have been strengthened.
He said some Liberians have benefitted from Cuban scholarships to study medicine, stating three have retuned and a lady is expected to leave for similar program.
The Cuban diplomat said the scholarship program in Medicine that this part of his country’s human resources development program was initiated by their former leader Fidel Castro.
The Cuban diplomat, who has ended his tour of duty and was expected to depart for home yesterday, said he was proud to be in Liberia at a time of health crisis and praised his country’s intervention.
With the latest resurfacing of the disease, with a latest report of three confirmed cases, he said the best way out is for Liberians to be disciplined, especially on the issues of preventive measures to avoid the spread on the disease.
He praised the Liberian people for warmly receiving him and also working along with him.
He said although he had to return, but pointed out that he will miss Liberia because of the way he was received by Liberians as friendly and wonderful people.
He also lauded the working relationship with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and others. Meanwhile, Mr. Gonzalez’s replacement, Yordevis Despaigne Vera has arrived in the country. He told this paper that he is happy to be in Liberia, his first African country of assignment.