Tuesday, April 26, 2011

EACJ Could Become Appellate Court, Says Sezibera

Now a day after Dr. Richard Sezibera assumed office at the East African Community’s Secretariat, how he will deal with the issue of making the organs of the community effective and relevant is what remains to be seen. Currently there are seven institutions and organs that were put in place under article 9 of the treaty forming the East African Community to spearhead the integration process. 

The organs and institutions include ; The Summit of Heads of state; the Council of Ministers; the Co-ordination Committee; Sectoral Committees; the East African Court of Justice; the East African Legislative Assembly and the EAC Secretariat.

Now some of these organs and institutions have acording to analysts not performed their duties. For instance many would have thought that the East African Court of justice would have been able to even take up the Kenyan case on the post election violence of 2007-2008.

The case is now actively being heard by the International Criminal Court at the Hague. The East African Community Secretary General however says that some of these institutions have their hands tied and therefore cannot be able to carry out certain tasks.
The reality Sezibeera says is that the treaty Sezibera only gives definite functions to this court to deal with matters of East African Community agenda ; just matters that deal with the treaty and its protocols. So the question is, doesn't this render the institution toothless when it comes to dealing with other fundamental cases involving member states ?

There has however been a debate about whether the East African Court of Justice should become the comunity’s court of appeal but there still hasn't been a concrete deliberation on this. The new secretary General is of the idea that the business community and citizens of the East African community put their leaders to task and push the organs of the community to implement the protocols and other agreements arrived at.

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