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Secretary General commends the Defence sector in the region for exemplary programmespr_20170828_001

Burundi National Defence ForceBasketballers pose for a photo before taking on Uganda Peoples Defence Force Netballers at the GEMS Field in Bujumbura
Burundi National Defence ForceBasketballers pose for a photo before taking on Uganda Peoples Defence Force Netballers at the GEMS Field in Bujumbura

East African Community Secretariat; Bujumbura, Burundi; 28 August 2017:

The Secretary General of the East African Community, Amb. Liberat Mfumukeko has commended the Defence sector in the region for its exemplary work and being a shining stay in the regional integration agenda.

Speaking at a Dinner Gala hosted over the weekend at a Bujumbura Hotel by Burundi’s Ministry of Defence for the contingents and officials attending the 11th EAC Military Games and Cultural Event 2017, the Secretary General said that the implementation of the Protocol on Cooperation in Defence Affairs had been one of the successful and exemplary programmes in the EAC integration process geared towards confidence building and solidarity among themselves and the civilian population, as exemplified by the presence and attendance of the civilian population in large numbers during the games and cultural events.

“I commend our Chiefs of Defence Forces for the dedication and big strides they are making towards the realization of the aspirations of the Protocol on Cooperation in Defence matters”, affirmed the Secretary General.

Amb. Mfumukeko informed his audience that since 2005, the Community had held Ten Editions of the Military Games and Cultural Event and the 11th Edition was the second time the Republic of Burundi was hosting the event. The first time Burundi hosted the event was in 2011.

“We at the EAC Secretariat consider this to be a significant achievement and indicator of the good progress we are making in pushing the integration agenda forward,” noted the Secretary General.

Amb. Mfumukeko briefly outlined the achievements the Community was registering in all the pillars of the integration (Customs Union, Common Market, Monetary Union, and Political Federation).

In regard to the Political Federation, the Secretary General said the Heads of State had deliberated on issue and adopted the Political Confederation as a transitional model of the East African Political Federation and directed the Council of Ministers to constitute a team of Constitutional Experts to draft the Constitution for the Political Confederation.

At the same function, Colonel Joseph Bakari, a representative of the International Military Sports Council (CISM) based in Brussels Belgium, a citizen of Tanzania and a serving Officer of the Tanzania Peoples Defence Forces (TPDF) attached to CISM as Assistant to the CISM Director of Sports, reiterated CISM’s appreciation and respect to the Government of Burundi for adherence to CISM goals and ideals and also the EAC Partner States to allow these games to be organized annually on rotational basis.

Col. Bakari, who represented the Secretary General of CISM Col. Dorah Mamby Koita (Guinea), said that what the world witnessed at the official opening of the 11th EAC Military Games and Cultural Event, and throughout the duration of the event in Bujumbura, is sign of peace in the region and the implementation of CISM ideals at the regional level.

“In CISM we have a clear “NO POLITICS IN CISM” institutional principle' that allows us to go beyond barriers and unite soldiers in a peaceful environment in all countries of the world. Suffice to say this is also the same with the EAC military games and therefore qualifying the EAC as a key promoter of International Military Cooperation” noted the CISM official, adding that “Gathering in a spirit of peace and mutual understanding among the EAC Partner States is indeed a genuine demonstration of EAC uniqueness and relevance in the current international military and defense strategies”.

“However, some fundamental values common to every soldier,​wherever they come from, such as determination, open-mindedness, discipline, commitment and respect as well as avoidance of drug use and abuse in sports (Anti doping) should always be emphasized”, declared Col. Bakari.

- ENDS -

Notes to Editor: 

CISM is one of the largest multidisciplinary organizations in the world formed in 1948 after the Second World War. It is made up of 136 member countries recognized by the United Nations as follows:- Africa (46), Asia (30), America (18) and Europe (42). The Motto of CISM is Friendship Through Sport. EAC Partner States are Members of CISM.

Since inception, CISM has established as its primary objectives to bring together, through the vector of sporting activities, the soldiers of the world on the sport fields to ultimately promote friendship and solidarity, embracing the international efforts towards a peaceful world. Soldiers, who may previously have met on the battlefield, now meet in friendship on the sports playing fields.

The current CISM President is Col Abdul Hakeem Alshino (Bahrain) and the Secretary General is Col. Dorah Mamby Koita (Guinea).


For more information, please contact:

Mr Owora Richard Othieno
Head, Corporate Communications and Public Affairs Department
EAC Secretariat
Arusha, Tanzania
Tel: +255 784 835021
Email: OOthieno [at]


About the East African Community Secretariat:

The East African Community (EAC) is a regional intergovernmental organisation of five Partner States, comprising Burundi, Kenya, Rwanda, Tanzania and Uganda, with its headquarters in Arusha, Tanzania.


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