East Africa Court of Justice (EACJ) has dropped a case filed by three Tanzanians challenging a decision by Kenya, Uganda and Rwanda to lock out their country from a tripartite deal to fast-track East African integration.
The court allowed an application by Ally Msanga, David Makatha and John Bwenda to have the case discontinued, citing financial restrains that would not allow them to challenge the move by the three countries to have Tanzania out of the agreement.
The tripartite agreement was to have the three nations carry out major infrastructure projects and trade together. The triumvirate, branded by a section of the media as a coalition of the willing, also mooted a political federation.
“The applicants have sought to discontinue with the case. Since the respondents have no objection, the reference is marked as discontinued by consent of parties,’’ a bench composed of Justices Jean Butasi, Isaac Lenaola, Faustin Ntezilyayo, Monicah Mugenyi and Fakihi Jundu ruled.
The three Tanzanian citizens had sued the Secretary General of the East African Community and the Attorney Generals of Kenya, Uganda and Rwanda, arguing that the three countries had broken a treaty that established the community when presidents Uhuru Kenyatta, Paul Kagame and decided Yoweri Museveni formed a block for development that side-lined Tanzania.
The subject matter of the case was the resolutions and communiqués made at the meetings held by Kenya, Uganda and Rwanda on June 24 and 25, 2013, in Entebbe Uganda, August 28, 2013 in Mombasa, Kenya and October 28, 2013 in Kigali Rwanda.
In those meetings the three presidents were said to have agreed on several measures to fast-track integration efforts in the region, with an initial focus on joint infrastructure projects and the eradication of Non-Tariff Barriers (NTBs) in the Northern Transport Corridor that covers Kenya, Uganda, Rwanda and South Sudan.
The three presidents mooted a standard gauge railway (SGR) running from Mombasa through Nairobi to Malaba on to Kampala, Kigali and Juba in South Sudan.
This according to the suit by the three was against the treaty that was signed on November 30, 1999 by Kenya, Uganda and Tanzania. Burundi and Rwanda joined in 2007.
The applicants were seeking orders that the failure by Secretary General of the East African Community to report and investigate the issue was also in breach of the treaty.
In Kenya, President Kenyatta, according to the deal, ordered operations at Mombasa Port to be streamlined, leading to a reduction in the time taken to clear goods. He further ordered for the number of road blocks on transit to Uganda to be reduced.
Source: Standard Digital
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