EAC Heads of State Summit postponed once again

Saturday February 22 2020

East African Heads of State at a meeting in Arusha, Tanzania.

East African Heads of State at a meeting in Arusha, Tanzania. The Heads of States Summit scheduled for February 29, 2020 has been postponed over lack of quorum. PHOTO | FILE | NATION MEDIA GROUP 

PATTY MAGUBIRA
By PATTY MAGUBIRA
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The 21st East African Community (EAC) Heads of State Summit, which was scheduled for February 29, 2020, has been postponed yet due to lack of quorum.

In a letter sent to partner states, Secretary General Liberat Mfumukeko also postponed the 41st Extra-Ordinary Meeting of the EAC Council of Ministers scheduled to take place from February 25, 2020 at the EAC Headquarters in Arusha.

In his three-paragraph letter seen by The East African, Mr Mfumukeko says he had received a letter from the Chairman of the EAC Council of Ministers, Mr Olivier Nduhungirehe, saying South Sudan is unable to attend both meetings.

In his letter dated February 21, 2020, Mr Nduhungirehe says a new date would be set after consultations with partner states.

Quorum for the EAC Heads of State Summit is attained when all partner states are represented, according to Rule 11 of the Rules of Procedure. This is in consonance with decision making by consensus under Article 12 of the Treaty.

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South Sudan is currently in the process of forming a transitional government of national unity (TGoNU) following a compromise between President Salva Kiir, opposition leader Riek Machar and other opposition groups.

Reports say South Sudan has proposed that the EAC Heads of State Summit and the Council of Ministers meetings be held in mid-March when the (TGoNU) is in place.

The EAC Treaty requires the bloc to hold at least one meeting a year for Heads of State with representation of all six partner states -- Burundi, Kenya, Rwanda, South Sudan, Tanzania and Uganda.

High on the 21st EAC Heads of State Summit is a review of the four pillars of the bloc: the Customs Union, Common Market, Monetary Union and Political Confederation as a transition to Political Federation.

The Democratic Republic of Congo’s application to join the bloc is also expected to be discussed.

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