South Sudan’s President Salva Kiir Mayardit is poised to assume the chairmanship of the East African Community (EAC) Heads of State summit, succeeding Burundi’s President Evariste Ndayishimiye, whose one-year term concluded earlier this year.
The upcoming EAC summit in Arusha, Tanzania, on November 23-24 will mark the transition, with discussions expected to cover climate change and food security.
EAC Secretary General Dr Peter Mathuki announced President Kiir’s chairmanship schedule in September, highlighting South Sudan’s commitment to regional integration.
“President Kiir is expected as the next Chair of the East African Community after Burundi. Kiir’s nomination as chairman is a testament to South Sudan’s commitment to regional integration,” said Dr Mathuki.
Kiir will lead the regional bloc during discussions on peace and security, addressing issues such as the crisis in Sudan and the Eastern Democratic Republic of Congo, where South Sudan has deployed troops as part of the East African Regional Force to restore peace.
The EAC chairmanship rotates among member states, with each holding the position for a one-year term. President Ndayishimiye currently serves as the chairperson, succeeding Kenya’s President Uhuru Kenyatta in July last year during the 22nd Ordinary Summit of EAC Heads of State in Arusha, Tanzania.
President Kiir’s tenure comes at a critical time, emphasizing the region’s focus on addressing challenges and fostering collaboration in various areas.
The EAC, composed of Burundi, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Kenya, Rwanda, South Sudan, Uganda, and Tanzania, aims to promote regional integration, and its headquarters are situated in Arusha, Tanzania.