As members from various political parties pick up nomination forms for the EALA elections that are due to take place next month, Makerere university history don Mwambutsya Ndebesa has spoken out on the integration of the East African Community (EAC).
According to the lecturer and political analyst, EAC has been reduced to opportunism. “I am dissatisfied with how the EALA is approaching integration. If we hope to build a better region, we should transcend from territorial interests to a transnational EAC,” he said Wednesday morning while appearing on a local TV station.
senior lecturer Ndebesa is of the view that it shouldn’t be politics alone uniting East African but rather have the needed ‘strings’ to bring them together as one.
“We need to have strings tying EA countries beyond opportunism. It shouldn’t be about how a country benefits from another. To be East African should go beyond elections to how countries can grow together towards development,” he said.
Former State Minister for Education Capt Edward Francis Babu, whose wife Margret Zziwa is a former Speaker of EALA, agrees with Ndebesa.
“I agree with Mr. Ndebesa. To be East African should go beyond elections to how countries can grow together towards development,” he says, adding: “To be East African is the key to East African integration.”
According to the chairman NRM electoral commission Dr. Tanga Odoi, over 60 NRM party members including Democratic Party’s (DP) Stella Nakiryowa, had picked forms. NRM has only 5 slots.
Meanwhile, over 10 FDC members have picked the nomination forms but the party has just one slot at EALA.
Also, the Democratic Party (DP) fronted a single candidate, party vice president Fred Mukasa Mbidde, to run for the second time.
UPC has confirmed two candidates for EALA; Chris Opoka Okumu and Isaac Ojok Anok. The party spokesperson Michael Osinde told journalists today the names of the two candidates will be forwarded to the UPC parliamentary group for the final stage of the nomination process.
Uganda has 9 slots at EALA.