Why Kenyan doctor committed suicide in Cuba


Why Kenyan doctor committed suicide in Cuba

In Summary

  • The Ministry of Health said Dr Hamisi Ali Juma died on Sunday , March 17 under unclear circumstances.
  • Dr. Ali Juma was one of the 50 Kenyan doctors in Cuba sponsored by government to study Family Medicine

The government has confirmed the death of one of the 50 Kenyan doctors who went to Cuba for training under a partnership programme between the two countries.

Citizen TV understands that Dr. Hamisi Ali Juma committed suicide barely six months into the programme.

He was one of the 50 Kenyan doctors in Cuba sponsored by the government to study Family Medicine as a specialization under the framework of the MOU between Kenya and Cuba.

The family says the late Ali Juma was constantly complaining of poor working conditions in Cuba and at one point he even lodged a formal request to return home but that was never to be.

Citizen TV is also in receipt of a distress letter signed by 40 doctors in Cuba including the deceased. The letter was sent to the Parliamentary Committee on Health, pleading with the legislators to address what the doctors termed as “numerous challenges that have gone unanswered.”

According to the letter, the doctors constantly asked the Health Ministry for details of the course, accommodation and welfare in vain.

It further explains that they were forced to board the plane to Cuba with threats of tough disciplinary actions should they fail to do so.

In the letter, the doctors explain that they currently live under “humiliating and unbearable conditions,” sharing small rooms with no ventilation.

The doctors currently in cuba claim all their concerns have been ignored and for the family of Dr. Hamisi Ali Juma, its too little, too late.

In a statement issued on Monday, the Ministry of Health said Dr Hamisi Ali Juma died on Sunday , March 17 under unclear circumstances.

“The circumstances resulting in the death are not clear yet, as investigations by the Cuban authorities are ongoing.

“As we wait the full police report on the case, we urged fellow Kenyans especially his fellow student colleagues in Cuba to be sensitive to the grieving family and refrain from discussing the case on the social or regular media,” read part of the statement, signed by Health CS Sicily Kariuki and Mombasa Governor Ali Hassan Joho.

 

The Ministry further noted that plans are underway to transport the body back to Kenya, adding that “our Kenyan Embassy in Havana is working closely with the Cuban authorities on handling the case.”

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Story By Gloria Magudha
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