S. Sudan skips EAC inter-parliamentarian games

By: James Arusi in Kampala

The 10th East African Community Inter-Parliamentary games that kicked off on Sunday in Kampala, Ugandan has entered into its third day without the participation of South Sudan and Rwanda.

The games that brought over 800 representatives of Parliament in East African Community partner States are to be played from 08th – 18th December 2019.

South Sudan and Rwanda are the only two partner states that failed to send their parliamentary representatives to participate in the games.

“We have not received any communication from them (South Sudan and Rwanda) yet on their participation but all the other partner state parliaments have sent their participants,” said Gideon Gatpan, South Sudan EALA representative and the Chair EALA Inter-Parliamentary Games Committee.

 “These games are very important in sensitizing our citizens about East African Community because we can’t do much as the chapter,” he added.

The rotational-hosted annual activity of the East African Community is the 10th of its kind without South Sudan parliament participation or South Sudan hosting of the games a privilege given to all East African partner States.

South Sudan that joined the EAC in 2016 so far has only nine representatives in the East African Legislative Assembly, One Judge in the East African Court of Justice and a Military attaché, all based in Arusha, Tanzania.

Hosting of the ninth edition of the games in 2018 was withdrawn from South Sudan after former Transitional National Legislative Assembly (TNLA) speaker; Anthony Lino Makana in his letter to EALA, nullified the country’s readiness to host the games.

The EALA Inter Parliamentary Games Committee that assessed South Sudan’s sports facilities with few recommendations opted to move the games to Burundi last year.

Football, Tag of War, Netball, athletics, valley ball are among the sports discipline carried out in over 10 days of the games that are said to be geared towards widening and deepening the integration process in the region.

Partner States in the community are often expected to represent their country’s parliament in various sports activities that is announced each year by the EALA committee for Inter Parliamentarian games that is currently chaired by South Sudan.

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