New EALA Speaker Ntakirutimana Vows To Deliver On EAC Federation Agenda

The Speaker of the East Africa Legislative Assembly – EALA, Hon. Joseph Ntakirutimana has vowed that his administration will deliver on the long awaited creation of a single East Africa Community – EAC sovereign Government.

Ntakirutimana, from Burundi was elected the Speaker for the 5th Assembly in December, 2022.

He arrived in Uganda on Monday for a three-day induction exercise to acquaint himself with good governance on the bloc.

While meeting with Uganda’s Speaker Anita Among at Parliament on Wednesday, Ntakirutimana expressed concern that the regional integration agenda has clandestinely remained long  overdue after proponents conceived the idea 21 years ago.

The EALA Speaker explained the regional integration agenda is not known to the grassroots people who are to be the primary beneficiaries on the bloc and vowed that his administration will spearhead mass sensitization to popularize the regional integration agenda.

In response, Speaker Among challenged the EALA leadership to invest more in public awareness creation of the citizens in the member countries to enable the population appreciate the federation agenda of economic transformation, peace, security, and good governance among others.

Founded in 1967 for socio-economic and political reasons, the EAC is an intergovernmental organization composed of seven in the Great Lakes region of East Africa. They include the Democratic Republic of the Congo – DRC, Tanzania, Kenya, Rwanda, Burundi, South Sudan and Uganda with Ethiopia’s application to join the bloc under review process.

In 1963, a top-level meeting of the original proponents of the integration of the EAC that included former Presidents; Julius Kambarage Nyerere of Tanzania, Uganda’s Apollo Milton Obote, and Jomo Kinyatta of Kenya nearly achieved the federation but failed after the alliance first collapsed in 1967, and was revived in July 2000.

The EAC integration process is anchored on four pillars that include; the customs union, the common market, the monetary union and the political federation but little progress has tangibly been achieved.

In 2010, the EAC launched its common market for goods, labour, and capital within the region, intending to create a common currency and eventually a full political federation.

In 2013, a protocol was signed outlining their plans for launching a monetary union within 10 years. In September 2018 a committee was formed to begin the process of drafting a regional constitution.

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