President Samia: ‘Let’s not be too dependent’

  • Urges EAC to be steadfast in protecting environment

TANZANIA, Arusha PRESIDENT Samia Suluhu Hassan has urged East African Community (EAC) partner states not to be too dependent on donor countries when dealing with climate related disasters.

Describing Africa as the source of Mother Nature, Dr Samia appealed to EAC partner states to be steadfast in protecting the environment.

Dr Samia, who was speaking on the sidelines of EAC Heads of State High Level Meeting on Food Security and Climate Change in Arusha on Thursday, urged fellow leaders no to be too reliant on donor countries for funds, when dealing with climate related crisis.

“We shouldn’t depend on other people for resources when dealing with issues of climate change, this should also be our stance in the coming COP23,” she pointed out.

According to Dr Samia, Africa boast of arable land that was optimally used by foreign countries, saying it was high time African countries use their own resources when coping with effects of climate change.

“Elsewhere, they have already destroyed their environment, we need to be vigilant and not to easily give in to demands and conditions,” she said.

Dr Samia was quick to highlight on a number of measures rolled out by the Tanzanian government in dealing with effects of climate change.

They include a tax exemption on agricultural machinery, a move that is bent on boosting food security prospects.

“Our government is currently rallying the private sector to make the most of Climate Change by establishing research centres in different parts of the country,” she disclosed.

For his part, the outgoing EAC Chairperson, Evariste Ndayishimiye said the globe was currently facing an unprecedented crisis in the face of drought and floods, urging EAC partner states to come together in salvaging the situation.

“This is the right time to join our efforts and resources in rescuing the situation,” said the Burundi leader.

What EAC countries needed at the moment, was requisite technology, research and investment in environmental issues, according to Mr Ndayishimiye.

The seven leaders will today converge here, where they will issue a joint communiqué on a number of EAC issues, chiefly being Somalia’s bid to join the regional economic bloc.

The EAC recently officially launched the verification mission to assess Somalia’s readiness to join the regional bloc.

A team of experts from the partner states travelled to Somalia from January 25 to February 3, 2023.

The team, among other roles, was tasked to establish the country’s level of conformity with the criteria for admitting countries as provided in the Treaty establishing the EAC.

Speaking during the official launch, EAC Secretary-General Peter Mathuki disclosed that the technical team in Mogadishu was tasked to prepare a report that was to be presented to the EAC Council of Ministers for consideration before forwarding it for decision at the 23rd Summit of EAC Heads of State that was held in February this year.

“Somalia has the longest national coastline of over 3,000km in Africa, linking Africa to the Arabian Peninsula, which the region will tap into to increase intra-regional trade,” said Dr Mathuki.

When admitted, Somalia will join seven-member bloc, becoming the eight partner states.

EAC states are Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania, Rwanda, Burundi, South Sudan and the latest entrant the Democratic Republic of Congo, which joined in April last year.

Somalia had applied to join the bloc two times before, but the Community never sent a team of experts to the country to determine if it qualified for membership.

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