Cuban Ambassador to Trinidad and Tobago, Humberto Rivero Rosario has pledged to ensure that one Tobagonian, nominated by the Tobago House of Assembly, received a scholarship to study medicine at any Cuban University.
Speaking with the media after a meeting with THA Chief Secretary Orville London on Friday (1 April, 2011) Rosario said the global economic crisis coupled with the US blockade has caused the Cuban Government to reduce the number of scholarships granted, as well as the different scholarship areas. However, he added, Cuba is committed to providing scholarships to its “brothers and sisters in developing nations, particularly CARICOM member states.”
Rosario said it is hoped that with the granting of scholarships, there would be an improvement in the number of students from Trinidad and Tobago who study in Cuba, since T&T student attendance had dwindled over the past 40 years. The scholarships he argued would help increase the number of people, providing health care assistance in Trinidad and in Tobago. Adding that with the new Scarborough Hospital to come on stream soon, a new team of Cuban nurses and doctors can also be part of the cadre of healthcare professionals in Tobago. At present there are two doctors and two nurses on staff in Tobago.
THA Chief Secretary Orville London said: “I think that it is an indication of the generosity of the Ambassador and the Cuban people by extension, that this offer was made almost off the bat and I think this augers well.” He said as part of their very lively discussion was the possibility for other areas of collaboration, including culture and some agricultural initiatives.
“We look forward to improved relationships with the Ambassador and the people of Cuba because I think there are a number of opportunities that we can learn from the Cuban experience and also benefit from the opportunities available”, London added.