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EALA commences sitting in Arusha

By Apollo Mubiru

Added 5th March 2018 10:20 AM

The assembly convenes for the third meeting of the first session of the 4th assembly, which runs until March 23, 2018.

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The assembly convenes for the third meeting of the first session of the 4th assembly, which runs until March 23, 2018.

PIC: Mukasa Mbidde, an EALA legislator from Uganda moving a motion at the assemby. (Courtesy photo)

EAST AFRICAN COMMUNITY


ARUSHA - The East African Legislative Assembly (EALA) on Monday resumes its sitting in Arusha, Tanzania.

The assembly convenes for the third meeting of the first session of the 4th assembly, which runs until March 23, 2018.

Key items at the sitting include the debate on the East African Community Oaths Bill, 2017.  The Bill anticipates the provision for the taking and administering of Oaths in relation to the specific persons appointed to serve in the organs or institutions of the community or required to take oath, before giving evidence at the East African Court of Justice.

The Bill moved by the chair of the Council of Ministers, Kirunda Kivejinja, states that whereas there are specific persons who are required by the treaty like in the case of the judges and registrars of the East African Court of Justice (in justice matters) or an act of the community like in the case of EALA members, in all other cases, oaths of allegiance should be administered and taken in accordance with staff rules and regulations or by practice.  

The Bill, which sailed through the first reading at the recent sitting in Kampala, hopes to cure the gap by providing for the administration of an oath as a statute.

In addition, the report of the EALA on the on-spot assessment (tour) of the northern and central corridors shall also be tabled and debated.

The report follows the recent 13-day (February 12th-23rd, 2018) assessment of the institutions, facilities and installations of the EAC programmes in the partner states undertaken by the assembly.

At the tour, one team inspected the northern corridor, commencing in Mombasa port and covering a total of 1,444km to Kigali – through Nairobi and Kampala.

Another delegation of members traversed concurrently, through the Central Corridor, from Dar es Salaam through to Bujumbura and eventually Kigali.  Both teams then convened in Kigali, to crystallise the findings and for a wrap-up of the two-week tour.

The tour was intended to enable members appreciate the operations of EAC institutions and authorities/agencies that provide services and the corresponding gains and challenges of integration.

The tour also provided several fora to get feedback and recommendations from the citizens on their perception of the integration efforts so far.

The assembly, after a debate on the findings, shall provide the way forward in recommendations to be forwarded to the EAC Council of Ministers.

The assembly also anticipates resumption of debate on the Address of the Chairperson of the EAC Summit of Heads of State delivered on January 23, 2018 at the sitting in Kampala, Uganda.  

Delivering the speech, President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni reiterated the need for the bloc to go full procedure to unite the markets for prosperity of the people.

Museveni remarked the region stood to gain much more as a unified front. He cited the strategic security as key in integration and called on the region to effect better use of the existing common natural resources for its own prosperity, citing Lake Victoria as a case in point.

The sitting is also to be interspersed in week 1 by rigorous committee work, as well as further induction for members, largely on audited accounts and the EAC budget processes and framework.

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