Dr. Anthony Nsiah-Asare, the Director-General of the Ghana Health Service, says no Ghanaian Muslim woman was trained in Cuba as a gynaecologist over the past six years as being claimed by former president John Mahama.
The flagbearer of the National Democratic Congress (NDC) John Mahama speaking at the Al Sunna Eid Prayers on the occasion of Eid ul Adha at the Efua Sutherland Park in Accra, had claimed that he sent female students to Cuba for training as gynaecologists so as to enable them to handle gynaecology cases of female patients who feel uncomfortable with male doctors.
In a quick response, Dr Nsiah Asare has stated that the records available do not buttress Mr. Mahama’s claims and that there was no student from the batch which has just returned from Cuba who was trained in gynaecology.
“No student was trained in gynaecology from the batch sent to Cuba then as claimed by former President John Mahama. In all, there were 217 General Practitioners and two Physiotherapists in that batch,” Dr. Nsiah-Asare told a section of the media.
“One needs to graduate as a General Practitioner before he or she can even specialise. So it is wrong for the former President to allude that they deliberately sent female students to Cuba to be trained in gynaecology when they had not even been trained as general practitioners,” Dr. Nsiah-Asare added.
Mahama at the Al Sunna Eid Prayers said: “About six years ago, when we got scholarships to send some of our children to Cuba to train as Doctors, there was something significant we did. We deliberately decided to source girls from the Muslim communities to be part of the training, especially in the area of gynaecology.
“Our Muslim women who have difficulty when they have to go and consult medically for their reproductive health, prefer that a female doctor looks after them. Our plan was to train female doctors from our Muslim community, so that when they come back, we can strategically place them. That will make it possible for our mothers and others who want to consult for their reproductive health to have our sisters who have qualified as doctors to be able to look after them,” Mahama stated.
Meanwhile, vice president Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia in his recent visit to Cuba announced that the North American country has accepted to train 40 brilliant but needy medical students a year from Zongo, inner-city and other deprived communities in Ghana. Under this arrangement 40 Ghanaian students, comprising 20 males and 20 females will be trained.