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The use of Kiswahili in East Africa has got a shot in the arm, as members of the East African Legislative Assembly (EALA) are currently undergoing a capacity building course in the widely spoken language, ‘to shore up their efforts in sensitising the citizens in the region’.

At the five-day workshop, the EALA members will also focus on the Medium Term Expenditure Framework (MTEF) and auditing in a bid to strengthen the oversight function of the assembly.

According to the EALA, its committees on accounts and general purpose, called for the enhancement of capacities in order to improve on their oversight role.

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As the integration deepens and specifically with the Common Market Protocol in effect, it is important for all EAC citizens to speak Kiswahili to avoid lagging behind. It is also expected to serve as an important tool in forging the much awaited Political Federation in the region“, EALA Speaker, Rt. Hon Daniel Fred Kidega said adding that Kiswahili is “a key uniting factor for the region and in strengthening the integration process.”

Kiswahili is the lingua franca of the Community as envisaged under Article 137 of the EAC Treaty, with a Kiswahili Commission established as an institution of the EAC and is based in Zanzibar.

As an Assembly, we also have no choice but to perfect our Kiswahili.  Already many of us are quite comfortable with Kiswahili, but this is no excuse for we need to be articulate, knowledgeable and fluent if we are to fully sensitise the citizens of this great region“, the Speaker added.