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Fast Tracking EAC Political Federation - a Liability?

Discussion in 'International Forum' started by Invisible, May 7, 2008.

  1. Invisible

    Invisible Admin Staff Member

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    May 7, 2008
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    Alice Buhinja
    Kigali


    Rwanda and Burundi officially the EA community in July 2007 but the two countries still have to settle some issues to progressively move with the rest of the member states.

    There is need to harmonize domestic issues and convince their legislative bodies to ratify the treaty, as the issue of Political Federation reaches its peak.

    Rwanda and Burundi, like their counterparts, are supposed to consult their population about fast tracking the federation. The time table was drawn by the former three countries but I believe with Tanzania not supporting fast tracking and with two new countries on board the time table is more likely to be altered.

    Consultations are likely to be far reaching, but mostly focus on asking the population which includes the private sector, academicians, politicians, local government, parliamentarians, business sector and the civil society including women and youths about political federation.

    We have to be told the fears and opportunities, and what form of federation we should have. Also, issues of the qualifications and term of office of the president and other central government officials is likely to be top on agenda; how much power should be left to federal states and how much or which powers should be surrendered by federal states to central government.

    Let's refocus on the past and see why the EAC collapsed so that we do not repeat the same mistakes. Looking back there were three major factors that led to the collapse of the cooperation. These are intra-community political differences, differences on sharing the benefits from the jointly owned services and lack of policy to redress the situation and low participation of civil society and private sector in the running and decision making of the community.

    The questions today are: have we addressed these issues? Will the same mistakes not recur? Is the quest for political federation genuine, do we have any precedence we are following, or we are just driven by excitement?

    I want us to explore critically the reasons put forward for fast tracking federation and the time framework and see if it is realistic.

    Meaning of federation

    Political federation means a compound of polity uniting constituent units (federal states) which include Tanzania, Uganda, Kenya, Rwanda and Burundi; and a general government each posting powers delegated to its people through a constitution.

    Political federation will mean one border, one federal government with a new name, federal anthems, flag, federal court of justice, federal legislature to mention some. We shall have one central government while the current governments will be federal states. The federal states will surrender some of their powers and functions to the central government.

    Economically federation implies one central bank, common currency, customs union, one capital market (stock exchange centralized).

    We have two approaches to Integration or union top-down approaches and bottom-up approach. The first one is commonly known as Kwame Nkrumah's approach. Political Integration is a tool that brings about integration in other spheres. He urged that "Seek ye the first the political kingdom and everything else shall be added onto you."

    The other is bottom-up approach which is known as functionalism. This assumes that integration is promoted piecemeal as to build a web of functional relations in different areas such as trade, investment, infrastructure, culture etc. He advanced that this arrangement with political federation brings a logical culmination of integration process from below.

    The current EAC is taking the two approaches. However, recently emphasis has been put on the first one. The target has been 2010 as the year to have achieved Political Federation. This came after the three East African Heads of State (Uganda, Tanzania and Kenya) in 2004 felt that the rate at which federation was moving was very slow and therefore needed to quicken it. They formed a fast tracking federation committee. The committee findings included recommendations such as compression of current stages of Customs Union, Common Market, Monetary Union and Political Federation, an overlapping parallel integration and immediate establishment of East African Federation.

    With the entry of Rwanda and Burundi into EAC, there is need to provide enough time to harmonize their internal policies and procedures to that of EAC, and sensitize their population about EAC and Political federation. The time looks short for the new entrants and therefore unrealistic. Even the former three EAC members' population is not fully aware of political federation and therefore we must allocate time for mobilisation and education rather than jumping into it. Back home to individual member states: there are issues to first settle such as relationships between domestic bodies and the central EAC bodies. Take an example of relationship between EALA and national legislation. Their relationship has not been smooth; EALA makes regular reports to national legislations for discussion and domestication but rarely do national legislation debate EALA reports. This is probably because the domestic politics is inward looking and therefore take precedence.

    There is still political differences in the current EAC members, like domestic deficits, internal problems and thus not easy to forge a political federation. We need time to harmonize this, thus gradual process of integration may allow the opportunity to settle our differences.

    I believe that there is need for building a block approach to integration rather than rushing into it. This means making sure that Custom Union works first, then to converge to economic policies, cross border investment and ultimately to Political federation. The political environment is not ripe yet, so we better not rush it.

    Normally when any one is to implement a new policy, he looks at the past and where else the policy has been successful to analyse its worthiness and application. We do not have a successful precedent anywhere in the world where Political Federation preceded economic integration. This calls for critical thinking before action.

    I think the fast tracking political federation is politically driven but we should focus on the entire interests of our citizens rather than a few individuals.


    The writer is a political scientist

    Source:All Africa
     
  2. Manda

    Manda JF-Expert Member

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    May 12, 2008
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    Makala nzuri sana!

    Binafsi mawazo yangu juu ya uharakishawaji wa EAF hautofautiani sana na mwandishi wa makala hio hapo juu, sioni kwanini tunaharakisha kuunda shirikisho inhali jumuia tuu yenyewe so far inalegalega.

    As far as Karl Marx rhetoric is concerned he talks about the ''substructure i.e the economic conditions to determine the ''superstructure'' i.e politics, values, education etc asa tuki-borrow idea yake hiyo still utakuta is valid till to our scenario which we have so far hapa kwetu.

    What fedaration for?, i looked as sisi kama Wa Tz tutakuwa scape goat wa hili shirikisho...lets promote and strengthen community kwanza then the latter will come later!!
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 23, 2009
  3. Kidzogolae

    Kidzogolae Senior Member

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    Sitaki huu uchafu unaoitwa federation. sitaki wakenya. period.
     
  4. MwanaFalsafa1

    MwanaFalsafa1 JF-Expert Member

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    I am tired of hearing Kenyans & Ugandans criticize Tanzania for rushing the whole "United States of East Africa" thing. Kwani jamani lazima tujiunge? I ask you kenyans & Ugandans, is it a must for Tanzania to join? After all we are a soveriegn state & we can decide for ourselves. I commend Tanzanian leaders for not speeding up things blindly for what ever reasons they have because first & for most we must know what Tanzanians want.

    Kenyans & Ugandans say Tanzania has something to fear from a complete union. Just think for a minute, if Kenya & Uganda don't have anything to gain from all this then why are they rushing it huh? First of all Tanzania has learned its learson from the whole Tanganyika & Zanzibar union. After more than 40 years, the union is still causing some problems & we are still not fully Tanzanians because some of our brothers & sisters want to label us as watanganyika na wazanzibari. With our own union not as stable why should we add to our problems. I strongly suggest Tanzania not to enter any other "union" untill the whole Tanzania mainland & Zanzibar thing is resolved. Although some would want to make it seem like all is well but the contrary is there for any one to see.

    Secondly, Tanzania should not enter any East African federation untill we are sure Tanzania & Tanzanians can benefit from it. What will we gain from the federation that we can not now? Kenyans say we are scared they will come & take our jobs, it seems to me they are just seeking a market from Tanzania. Like just recently Kenyan ministers said they want the borders in Lake Victoria to be erased so they can use any parts of the waters they want. Kenyans do you know how much of Lake Victoria you own? Very small. You also criticise our educational system & laugh at our English, have you hear your SWAHILI? I'm happy that you guys are so proud of a language that is not even yours, neo colonialism.

    Thirdly! The countries which make up the rest of the EAC, Kenya, Uganda, Rwanda & Burundi all have they problems which have not been solved yet. Kenya with the tribal politics & controling beaurocrats, Uganda with a precidency which has not changed hands in years & doesn't seem like its going to happen any time soon, and well Burundi & Rwanda need no introduction. Tanzania may have its problems but compared to this other countries we are better of. We mmay be poor but we are the most democratic & stable of the EAC states no doubt about that. Tanzanians lets concentrate on fixing the problems we have now & let the other countries also solve their problems then when we are all stable we can talk of a union. Each country has to many problems that if we were to become one country now we will just be infecting each other with other "deseases" we previously didn't have.

    There is also the issue of politics. Do you want to tell me that we are so East Africanized that individual countries won't play a role in govenment? During elections people will put their individual countries first which will cause a problem. While governing, politicians will favor thier home countries which will cause another problem. There will be discrimination in different government positions, funds won't be divided evenly and a host of other problems.

    Last but not least. Jamani this is the 21st century. You can not force any one to do any thing. If Tanzanians don't want to join we don't have to give any explanations. Kwani when a woman refuses to get married does she have to explain herself to the man? We did not gain our independence just for as to be dictated over. Tanzanians this is your country you do not have to do what other countries want. If Kenyans & Ugandans love each other so much they can form their federation with out us then when we are ready we can join. We all know Uganda is pushing the issue because Museveni just like Ghadaffi thinks when East Africa becomes one he will automatically become president, USE FLASH mu7, WHY WOULD WE WANT A LEADER WHO REFUSES TO LEAVE OFFICE FOR OTHERS?As for Kenyans they simply believe they are the South Africa of East Africa & are hoping as the biggest economy they will dominate the federation. Kenyans we do not want December 2007 & all those tribal politics in Tanzania.

    Before we move any further lets think of all the possible concequences. These politicians are only going to do what they think is best for them & in the end, we, the ordinary people will suffer. I'm still convinced that the beneficiaries of this union will be in the hands of a few people but most of us will be like lambs being pushed around. TANZANIANS PUT YOUR COUNTRY FIRST! As for Ugandans & Kenyans I dare any of you to argue with what I have said so we can have a polite debate on this. MESSAGE SENT!
     
  5. J

    Jasusi JF-Expert Member

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    I beg to disagree.
     
  6. M

    MzalendoHalisi JF-Expert Member

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    Tusiogope kuungana: sema tuwe makini ktk negotiations!

    Muungano has always been good!
     
  7. MwanaFalsafa1

    MwanaFalsafa1 JF-Expert Member

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    How do you disagree? Every one else has given a reason to think what they think but you have given non. Why do u beg to disagree & how?
     
  8. Who Cares?

    Who Cares? JF-Expert Member

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    mie sikatai kuungana kama eac...ila kabla hatujaunganaaa...NAOMBA MH. RAIS WANGU AMALIZE KERO ZA MUUNGANO WETU NA ZANZIBAR...basi twende kuungana na hao wenzatu...na kumaliza kero iwemo pia ya mafuta ya pemba na mengineyo ambayo wenzetu wazenji wanaona tunawabaka na kuwala..wi..ti kwenye huu muungano...ndo maana na sie kama watanzania hatupendi kwenda kubakwa na kulawi...ti...wa huko kwa makurumbembe yanayotutaka tuingie haraka....wanataka kuja kuchukuwa ardhi yetu wakati kwao hakuna hiyo ardhi...wanataka tununue blue band yao lakini hawataki tuuze safari lager yetu kwao kisingizio bidhaa zetu hazina viwango....wanataka tufungue mipaka yetu na kuuza mt. kilimanjaro lakini hawataki hata mtoto wa kitz afanye kazi ya ndani huko kwao....ITACHUKUWA MUDA...kama nyerere alikosea kipindi hicho ni kwa sababu wazee wengi walikuwa hawajasoma na alikuwa hana washauri kama sie hapa jf....ni maoni tuu..we dare to talk openly..
     
  9. Smatta

    Smatta JF-Expert Member

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    Miopic thinking and empty rhetoric. You can Reject the idea of a federation, but you cant bluntly dismiss a people, it shows what you have between your ears, probably a vaccum.

    Like I have always said in my posts about this federation, its not about you, its about the big boys with the big money. you will just scream your self hoarse, but as history has proven, even an army cant stop an idea whose time has come.

    You can procrastinate and delay the whole process, but the time will come when some of your leaders(through convincing, threatening or bribing), will take line, hook, bait and sinker, and make you join your worst nightmare, and you will simply do nothing about it. This is the real world, people will do anything to achieve what they want.Guess you will have to go get your degree or masters, because a high school certificate wont be worth much in the job market in the near future.
     
  10. Who Cares?

    Who Cares? JF-Expert Member

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    ahahahah..duuuuuh...ebwanaeeeeeeeh...at least a delay ya 2-3 centuries itasaidia watz kuwa na phd wote ndio tunaikaribisha hiyo by that time inaweza hata kuwa EAST AFRICA AND CHINA AND KOREA FEDERATION.....lakini hii ya sasahivi na nyie jirani zetu..itakuwa kama federation ya jews na palestinians...HAITOKAA ITOKEE MILELE... nadhani watanzania tupo firm and bold kwa hili la kuingilia mambo ambayo hayana tija kwetu...viongozi wetu wamejuwa kuwa walikosea kukimbilia moto kwa second time after ile ya kwanza kufa....hii ya pili inabidi kila president wa tanzania am-consult hayati nyerere then anaamua ...ni maoni tu ...thats why we dare to shout openlyy..
     
  11. Ab-Titchaz

    Ab-Titchaz Content Manager Staff Member

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    Slow down your opinions maana the picture is not really clear to
    you as to why a majority of Tanzanians are against the East African
    Federation....The time is not now!

    Folks are not ready coz the governments on both sides of the border are riddled
    with corruption and obviously one party is looking to take advantage of
    the other.

    The common mwananchi is saying subirini kwanza na acheni pupa zenu.
    Kumbuka kua ukubwa wa pua sio wingi wa kamasi!
     
    Last edited: Apr 23, 2009
  12. Ab-Titchaz

    Ab-Titchaz Content Manager Staff Member

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    Mkuu,

    the reason I dont belive its a liability but a necessity is based on
    another post which you startred... HAPA ...

    Miradi kama hii na ya elimu are the ones that bring this dream together.

    Coupled with that pia tunaweza kua na miradi ya kuzuia kuenea kwa
    jangwa while engaging in tree planting activities across the region.
    This has both an immediate and a long term benefit to the populace
    of the region.

    My Opinion though: Uganda cannot play ball with Museveni as President.
    That man is too dictatorial to understand development for the good of
    a greater society.
     
  13. Nyaralego

    Nyaralego JF-Expert Member

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    These EAC debates are always very interesting.
    All i can say that this EAC dream is a dream at most.
    However, on the flip side, I tend to agree with Smatta on one thing...When the big boys decide that they want one they will get one EAC, working or not. It will suit them and we will not be able to do anything. We will all rant and rave lakini it will be a done deal.

    Now back to the EAC issue, logically I do not see that happening and my logic is...

    Mistrust between Kenya na TZ
    Border issues between UG and Kenya
    History between TZ and UG
    M7ni and his untamable Kony and dubious ally in Gaddafi.
    These and many other issues that i'm not able to even think of now are going to make this the most famous still born!
    Huyu mtoto atazaliwa amefariki.

    I do not envision/see an EAC.
    Like i have said before...We as EAfricans have too many issues
    Somalia, to the North untamed, volatile and threatening.
    DRC unstable
    Comoros unstable riddled with coups and breeding Al khaeda sympathizers
    So long as we are battling all this forces, let alone our own corrupt systems we are going nowhere...at best the Federation will be stillborn, as in it had a chance to even BE...
    I our African traditions, we always clean house kabla ya kumkarubisha mgeni.!
    Tell me which house is clean?
    When i read Kenyan politics, it's scary...Tribalism a major problem
    TZdians are not happy with their Government..Ufisadi, rushwa...na kadhalika
    UG has Kony and Museveni is looking the other way and trying to cling to power by all means.
    Tell me hii EAC itatokea wapi? I say, no where.
    I know i will aggravate enough pple here but that 's my take unless someone has a very powerful and compelling argument.

    I also would like it to be known that EAC is a good idea and we as EAcans could benefit immensely if it became real...

    We share languages, ethnicities, kith and kin. Some people have relatives on either sides of the borders, it does not matter which one...
    KNY/TZ Isebania area, Mara, Taveta, Namanga...
    UG/TZ someone please fill this in for me
    UG/KNY Busia, Malaba
    Rwanda/UG
    Rwanda/ TZ, BURUNDI
    Rwanda /Burundi

    It is sad but true that this is going to be a hard fought battle...
    I bow out for now!!
     
  14. Lole Gwakisa

    Lole Gwakisa JF-Expert Member

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    No fast trackong hapa mpaka kielewke tuna fasttrack nini.
    Tusije jikuta tukiwa na mijitu ambayo hata kuongea kiswahili na kueleweka inakuwa shida.
    Kama watu hata kwa kuongea hamulewani sasa sijui tuta ishi nao vipi at close quarters.
    Waswahili wenzetu wa Zenj tu imekuwa kero kukaa nao na tunaona walivyo jaa bara sasa itakuwaje a combined onslaught ya fellow East Africans?
     
  15. K

    Koba JF-Expert Member

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    ....fed inakuja mtake msitake,hii backward thinking eti TZ are not ready ni politics tuu and i'm not buying it,sad sad watu bado wanataka kuishi kwenye hizi line za wakoloni centuries ago....nina uhakika Nyerere angeshinda presidency ya EA kama angekuwepo bila kutumia tribalism lines,inaniuma sana why we are not one NATION!
     
  16. MwanaFalsafa1

    MwanaFalsafa1 JF-Expert Member

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    You can't force a nation to enter into a federation or any other agreement benefitial or not. Kwani wewe utalazimishwa kuoa au kuolewa na mtu usiyemtaka hata kama ina manufaa? The point is not whether a federation is benefitial or not, the point is whether the people want it or not. Tanzania is Tanzania & it doesnt have to follow the bandwagon on any issue whether its agreed apon by others in the EAC or not.
     
  17. K

    Koba JF-Expert Member

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    ...sio lazima wote wakubali ndio fed ije,as long as wenye power wanataka itakuja tuu wengine watafuata tuu hata kwa viboko,hata states walipigana vita kuunda fed yao na hata sheria nyingi kupitishwa haitegemei majority la sivyo (kama uko states) ingekuwa illegal black/white kuoana,na hiyo mifano yako ya ndoa ni irrelevant kwenye hii issue!
     
  18. Nono

    Nono JF-Expert Member

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    Mimi natamani kuona hii federation. Lakini tatizo moja kubwa la nchi hizi, hakuna nchi yenye utawala wa sheria hata moja (upo tu kwa wezi wa kuku, wapinzani wao wa kisiasa), nchi zote zimeshindwa kuwa na katiba zinazotoa fursa kwa wananchi husika kushiriki katika maamuzi mbalimbali ikiwa ni pamoja kujichagulia viongozi wao. Sio Kenya (mambo ya kiviutu), Uganda (museveni kutawala na familia yake, na kutamani kuwa rais wa milele akiwa anashinikizwa na Ghadafi), Tanzania ndio hivyo, Rwanda ndio hivyo kila kitu ni Kagame (labda ni kuhakikisha kimbari haitokei tena).

    Tanzania, yetu ya muungano na Zanzibar tumeshindwa kukaa na kuyajadili kupata muafaka wa kero na aina ya muungano tunaoutaka, sasa EA sijui itakuwaje?

    Ni kweli mwenye nguvu mpishe, lakini mafahali wapiganapo, ziumiazo ni nyasi na hii ndio hofu ya wengi.
     
  19. Ab-Titchaz

    Ab-Titchaz Content Manager Staff Member

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    Kwa ufupi, hapo ni mambo na kulazimishana.
    Where is the right of the people relegated in such a case?

    It's not that simple.
     
  20. MwanaFalsafa1

    MwanaFalsafa1 JF-Expert Member

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    You have dictatorship & authoritative thoughts which are philosophies of a past era of Africa. So think people should enter the fed even if it means been beaten? Your example ya states makes no sense at this time because that happened more than 100 years ago. How does politics of 150 years ago of America apply to East Africa now? Na for your information America fought to gain land by force not to form a federation. The only time they fought for a federation was during the time of Abraham Lincolm when the sourthen states wanted to split from the northen states so thatnis like Northen Kenya fighting to keep sourthen kenya not to force another country into a federation.
    Another thing. A federation is not like a passing of a bill. have you ever heard of the word REFERENDUM? It is used to see the views of the people in issues such as this but obviously you would not know this because you don't even no your history thus your example of the US fighting to form a federation. Kasome your history then come back.
     
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