Gunmen have abducted two Cuban doctors in a road ambush in Mandera town, some 1,135 kilometres from the capital Nairobi.
In the daring attack that was staged a few minutes after 9am, the attackers shot dead one of the two police officers who were guarding the medics.
During the ambush, the armed assailants in two small cars first blocked the vehicle ferrying the medics to work.
According to witnesses, they then alighted and opened fire on the police officers, killing one instantly.
The other officer managed to escape in the attack that happened right in the middle of the northern-Kenya town that lies near the Somalia border.
The gunmen then bundled the two health workers into their cars and drove off and reports indicate they have crossed the border into Somalia.
The fate of the foreign doctors from Havana was not immediately clear as security officials are yet to issue a statement.
Security sources told the Nation that Kenya Defence Forces had been dispatched to chase after the two vehicles used in the raid and abduction.
The abducted doctors are among 100 Cuban specialists that Kenyan imported from Havana in June 2018 in a bid to improve service delivery in rural areas.
“The main idea in bringing these specialists is to learn from the Cuban experience in building a robust primary and curative healthcare system that has afforded the country universal health care,” Dr Rashid Aman, the chief administrative secretary at the Ministry of Health, said when the doctors arrived in 2018.
In June 2018, the National Treasury allocated Sh1 billion to cater for salaries and other benefits due to the foreign medics.
The doctors will take home a total of Sh563 million in salaries annually, according to a breakdown presented to the National Assembly’s Budget and Appropriations Committee (BAC).
“The committee was informed that the project is a bilateral agreement between Kenya and Cuba and has an allocation of Sh1,001,922,000,” Kimani Ichung’wa, who chairs BAC, says in a report on the budget estimates for the 2018/19 financial year.
Credit: Source link