By Amb. Dhano Obongo
November 3, 2017 (SSNA) — The East African Community, (EAC) is an intergovernmental union composed by six nations of the African Great Lakes Region. These eastern countries are Uganda, Tanzania, South Sudan, Rwanda, Kenya& Burundi.
The current Chairperson of the EAC is H.E Mr. John Magufuli , President of Tanzania.
The EAC was founded in July 7, 1967. In 2008, following dialogue with the Southern Africa Development Community (SADC) & the Common Market for Eastern & Southern Africa (COMESA), the EAC acknowledged an enlarged free trade area including the member states of all three organizations. The EAC is an integral part of the African Economic Community & a possible federation future, a planned federation future, a planned federation of its members into a single sovereign state.
In 2o10, the EAC initiated its own common market for goods labor & capital within the region with goals of creating a common currency & ultimately a political federation.
In 2011, following independence for the Republic of South Sudan (ROSS), the presidents of Rwanda & Kenya persuaded our new nation to join the EAC. And in July of that year, the government of South Sudan (GOSS) submitted its application for EAC affiliation.
Some political analyst proposed efforts to integrate infrastructure, including rail connection &oil pipelines, & for Juba to consider pivoting from independence of colonial domination toward the EAC.
Others opined that it was too early for South Sudan to unite with the EAC saying our economy was not adequately developed to compete with member nations. They said the Republic of South Sudan would become a dumping group for Tanzania, Kenya & Uganda.
In March 2016, the ROSS was finally accepted for association into the EAC & in April was signed into a agreement of attainment, with months to ratify the accord, official admittance occurred September5.
Participation intensity with in EAC by our new nation will be a matter revealed in due time. We will see how this turnout. God blesses the Republic of South Sudan.
The author can be reached via Email address: [email protected].