Africa Great Lakes Democracy Watch



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Africa Great Lakes Democracy Watch Blog. Our objective is to promote the institutions of democracy,social justice,Human Rights,Peace, Freedom of Expression, and Respect to humanity in Rwanda,Uganda,DR Congo, Burundi,Sudan, Tanzania, Kenya,Ethiopia, and Somalia. We strongly believe that Africa will develop if only our presidents stop being rulers of men and become leaders of citizens. We support Breaking the Silence Campaign for DR Congo since we believe the democracy in Rwanda means peace in DRC. Follow this link to learn more about the origin of the war in both Rwanda and DR Congo:http://www.rwandadocumentsproject.net/gsdl/cgi-bin/library


Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Rwanda, Burundi cry foul on Mwapachu succession

East African Community secretary general, Juma Mwapachu. Photo/FILE East African Community secretary general, Juma Mwapachu. Photo/FILE 
By CATHERINE RIUNGU
Posted Monday, December 27 2010 at 00:00

The vacancy created by the impending exit of East African Community Secretary General Juma Mwapachu is dividing the region, between Rwanda and Burundi on the one hand and Kenya, Tanzania and Uganda on the other.
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Sources familiar with Rwanda’s President Kagame’s thinking say that the new entrants into the EAC view as “unfortunate and divisive” the arguments advanced by Kenya, Uganda and Tanzania that it is not yet time for a Rwandese or Burundian to lead the EAC — ostensibly because the new member countries are “too young.”
It has not helped that the jostling for the position is being viewed in Kigali and Bujumbura in the light of the warming political ties between Uganda’s President Yoweri Museveni and Kenya’s Prime Minister Raila Odinga.
The latter joined the Ugandan leader on the campaign trail three weeks ago.
“So Kenya wants it — and I think, given what transpired between Museveni and Raila in Uganda, we can understand why they would want the next five years to be in safe hands. But it is idiotic, you cannot have a membership organisation where rights are granted on basis of seniority — even though when it comes to paying contributions, everyone pays the same,” our source said of President Kagame’s feeling about the developments around the secretary general’s position.
Rwanda is making no secret of the fact that it is interested in putting forward a candidate to vie for the post when it falls vacant in April after the incumbent, Mr Mwapachu, a Tanzanian, steps down on rotation.
If this issue is not sorted out amicably, analysts say it could kill “the Community in the popular imagination” if the public thinks that Rwanda and Burundi are being shoved aside.
According to the Treaty establishing the body, the secretary general has to come from a different member state after each 5-year tenure.
Rwanda’s EAC Affairs Minister Monique Mukaruliza was quoted by the Rwandan press as saying that the country was ready for the seat.
“Under the traditional rotation arrangement, it is supposed to be Rwanda or Burundi’s turn to take over,” she said in an article published in the New Times.
“We shall agree with Burundi who comes first because we joined the bloc at the same time, but if Burundi agrees, we shall occupy the chair,” she added.
She argued that the principle of the Treaty for the establishment of the EAC is clear about the occupancy of the post of secretary-general.
Ms Mukaruliza added that according to Article 67 of the treaty, the secretary-general shall be appointed by the Summit upon nomination by the relevant Head of State under the principle of rotation.
Rwanda currently has the youthful lawyer Alloys Mutabingwa as Deputy Secretary-General in charge of Planning and Infrastructure, and the most likely candidate for the post, should Rwanda succeed in its bid for the powerful position.
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