ARUSHA – Heads of State of the East African Community (EAC) partner states are set to meet in Arusha, Tanzania, next week on February 1, after the same meeting was postponed last December.
The previous meeting failed to take place due to lack of quorum after Burundi, a bonafide member of EAC, declined to send representatives.
“In the absence of Burundi, the summit will not take place due to lack of quorum”, the chairperson of the EAC Council of Ministers Kirunda Kivenjija affirmed.
He said in a terse statement that the ‘postponed’ meeting of the Heads of State would be convened at a later date.
Mr. Kivejinja, who is Uganda’s minister for EAC Affairs, said the rules and procedures of the summit require quorum of all the partner states
The new date was confirmed on Tuesday by Olivier Nduhungirehe, the Rwandan Minister of State in charge of the East African Community.
“Yes, it [the EAC Summit] is confirmed for February 1st. It’s the meeting of 30th November  that was postponed. The agenda remains the same,” Nduhungirehe told The New Times.
The summit, as earlier communicated by the Arusha-based EAC Secretariat, was due to discuss the status of ratification of various protocols; resolution of longstanding non-tariff barriers and the progress report on the adoption of a political confederation as a transitional model to the envisaged East African political federation.
It was also set to review progress report by the Council of Ministers on the directive by the Summit to have two deputy secretaries general of EAC recruited competitively on a rotational basis among the Partner States.