By Raymond Baguma
The East African Community secretariat has set up an information resource centre to ease dissemination of information on the community and the integration process to the public.
The resource centre was officially launched by Phyllis Kandie, the chairperson of the EAC council of ministers and cabinet secretary for East African affairs, commerce and tourism in Kenya.
During the event, Kandie said the resource centre would play a critical role in sensitizing EAC citizens. The launch was attended by EAC affairs minister Shem Bageine and state minister for foreign affairs Asuman Kiyingi.
Also, utilization of information and research data should be used to fuel regional growth and development and promote interest in the integration agenda especially among the youth, Kandie said.
She urged the centre management to organize and package information on regional integration, which is understandable and user-friendly for ordinary people.
Richard Owora, the EAC head of the corporate communications and public affairs, in a statement, said the resource centre was set up with financial support from European Union.
Dr. Richard Sezibera, the EAC secretary general said digitization of EAC information resources would improve access to information, improve information sharing with various organs, institutions, partner states, consultants, researchers, development partners and public.
Sezibera said Article 71 of the treaty establishing the EAC mandates the secretariat to promote and disseminate information on the community to stakeholders, public and international community.
“This Resource Centre therefore is part of that initiative,” said Sezibera.
Sarah Kagoda Batuwa, the principal librarian said when complete, the centre will have an online database with reports providing information resources on the secretariat, legislative assembly and the court of justice.
Also, the centre will have a full-text database of the summit, council, sector and taskforce reports, digitized and online EAC information resources generated in all integration processes.