East African Community (EAC) officials have been urged to confront the situation in the Eastern Democratic Republic of the Congo immediately by Kenya’s President William Ruto.
During the 20th Extra-Ordinary Summit of EAC Heads of State on Saturday, which was presided over by President Évariste Ndayishimiye of Burundi, the President made the comments in Bujumbura.
As civilians bear the brunt of the fighting, he said the situation is still a moving target. The situation is so bad, according to the president, that at least 27 million people urgently require humanitarian relief. As a follow-up to Nairobi-III, President Ruto demanded that Nairobi-IV of the Inter-Congolese Consultations be called immediately.
Presidents Samia Suluhu of Tanzania, Félix Tshisekedi of the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Paul Kagame of Rwanda, Yoweri Museveni of Uganda, a delegate of Salva Kiir of South Sudan, and the host participated in the one-day summit.
President Ruto suggested that additional neighborhood armed groups be contacted and involved under Nairobi-IV session of the Inter-Congolese Consultations. He stated that, “more actions shall be undertaken in furtherance of the commitments already reached with those armed groups which participated in Nairobi-I, II and III.”
He believes that it will be crucial to maintain the momentum created and the goodwill accumulated from the Nairobi processes even as the Nairobi IV plans are set forth.
He applauded armed organizations that have come forward to say they are prepared to give up their weapons and take part in the programme on Disarmament, Demobilization, Reintegration, and Community Stabilization. According to him, signifies the realization that the DRC’s citizens must unite and work together to create a safe, stable, and successful country.