Kenya, Tanzania agree to foster regional cooperation and diplomacy

Prime Cabinet Secretary Musalia Mudavadi has affirmed Kenya’s commitment to work with all member states in strengthening the East African Community’s (EAC) integration and prosperity.

Mudavadi who is also the Foreign and Diaspora Affairs Cabinet Secretary, has said that all member states must rally together and envisage the EAC’s vision, which relates to a prosperous, competitive, secure, stable and politically united East Africa, for the regional unity to be realized.

The Prime CS spoke as he met with his Tanzanian counterpart Dr January Makamba on the sidelines of the Ministerial meeting of the Non-Aligned Movement (NAM) Member States Summit happening in Kampala, Uganda.

The two ministers for Foreign Affairs agreed to pursue extensive bilateral engagements as a measure of strengthening and advancing the foreign diplomatic policies of Kenya and Tanzania.

“Kenya and Tanzania enjoy long-standing historical ties with close cooperation in key sectors of economic and cultural advancements. Being one of our key trading partners within the region, this collaboration extends beyond EAC and Africa as Kenya is known to have continuously improved its on foreign relations and diplomatic engagements globally,” said Mudavadi.

The meeting comes a day after the aviation restrictions controversy between Kenya and Tanzania was resolved following diplomatic engagements between Mudavadi and Makamba aided by the Transport Ministries of both countries.

Mudavadi says collaborative efforts in achieving key resolutions to emerging diplomatic spats should be encouraged within the East African Community region.

He said the EAC mission aims at widening and deepening economic, political, social and cultural integration to improve the quality of life of the people through increased competitiveness, value-added production, trade and investments.

“We are like conjoined twins and when one of us is hurt, we both feel the pain. We must be cognizant of the fact that within the contemporary globalized environment, there are emerging challenges some of which have deep diplomatic ramifications. But how we address the situation at hand and work collectively towards getting common solutions to the problems is what will move the integration forward and help our people,” Makamba explained.

Kenya and Tanzania have also agreed to give their respective support towards efforts to restore peace and normalcy in the conflict-hit Eastern DRC, a region that has continuously witnessed fragile calm and threats to humanity.

The Conflict in Somalia emerging from the territorial stand-off with Somaliland is also an issue that the Ministers said they will be seeking more interventions to see to it that peace is restored in the Horn of Africa.

The EAC is a regional intergovernmental organisation of eight Partner States namely Burundi, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Somalia, Kenya, Rwanda, South Sudan, Uganda, and Tanzania and headquartered in Arusha, Tanzania.

The work of the EAC is guided by its Treaty, which established the Community.

It was signed on November 30, 1999 and entered into force on July 7, 2000, following its ratification by the original three Partner States – Kenya, Tanzania and Uganda.

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