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Kenya, Tanzania commit to fostering regional integration, cross-border 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, the Foreign and Diaspora Affairs Cabinet Secretary, has said that all member states must rally together and envision the EAC’s vision. The vision is for a prosperous, competitive, secure, stable, and politically united East Africa. Regional unity can only happen if everyone works together.

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Mudavadi spoke while meeting Tanzania’s January Makamba. They met on the sidelines of the Non-Aligned Movement (NAM) Member States Summit in Kampala, Uganda.

The two ministers agreed to pursue extensive bilateral engagements. They want to strengthen and advance 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. This followed diplomatic engagements between Mudavadi and Makamba, with aid from the Transport Ministries of both countries.

Mudavadi says collaborative efforts should achieve key resolutions to emerging diplomatic spats. These efforts 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. The goal is to improve people’s quality of life 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.

The two leaders indicated that the two countries have also agreed to give their respective support toward efforts to restore peace and normalcy in the conflict-hit Eastern DRC. The region has continuously witnessed fragile calm and threats to humanity.

The conflict in Somalia is escalating from the territorial stand-off with Somaliland. The Ministers said they will seek more interventions to restore peace in the Horn of Africa.

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