Liberians who have benefited from scholarships awarded by the Cuban Embassy last Tuesday showed their appreciation by gowning the Chargè d’Affaires Yordenis Despaigne Vera and Second Secretary, Carmen Maury Toledo, for contributing to their education.
The beneficiaries who are members of the “Cuba-Liberia Friendship Association”, acknowledged the Cuban Embassy officials for their role in promoting Cuba-Liberia relations.
Kesselee Kanneh, vice president of the Association, told the Daily Observer that bilateral relations with Cuba have been rewarding and have afforded a good number of Liberians the opportunity to benefit from quality education in that country.
Mr. Kesselee who studied Physical Education and Sports in Cuba said that the Association began in early 2000, and has benefitted many Liberians.
Ms. Gaydou Zawolo, who studied Agronomy, said “It was very exciting to learn in Cuba because the country has a better learning atmosphere with instructors willing to sit with students and help them understand when there are difficulties.”
Zawolo, who is fluent in Spanish, appealed to other Liberians to study in Cuba when they have the opportunity.
In remarks earlier, Chargè d’Affaires Vera said many Africans travel to Cuba to engage in cultural and sporting activities.
Despite the economic blockade of Cuba by the United States, his country remains committed to providing support to Africa in the area of human resource capacity building, he said.
The occasion was attended by Sie-Teba Neufville, Assistant Minister in the Office of American Affairs at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
Neufville also recalled Cuba’s contributions to the liberation of Africa from colonial domination and against apartheid, for which President Fidel Castro provided men to fight alongside their African counterparts.
He said in all of their struggles, Liberia also stood by African countries in support of their freedom.
He acknowledged the role Cuba played in the Ebola fight in West Africa in 2014, when Cuba sent 53 medical doctors to Liberia.
Minister Neufville disclosed that on the basis of Liberia-Cuba relations, negotiations will soon be concluded with Cuba for medical doctors to come to Liberia to train doctors and other health workers.
Ambassador Ibrahim Kamara, head of the African Union Liaison Office in Liberia, extended gratitude to Cuba for its role in African liberation.
He said Fidel Castro demonstrated true love to Africans during the colonial and apartheid days, and assured the envoy that Africans will always remember him for that.