Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta Tuesday hailed the formal admission of the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) into the East African Community (EAC).
Kenyatta, who spoke virtually during the 19th Extra-Ordinary Summit of the EAC Heads of State and Government, said the expanded community will attract more investments across all sectors, a move that will create more wealth and employment for the people.
“Today as chairman of the EAC, I proudly and warmly welcome our brothers and sisters from the DRC to the EAC and look forward to joining hands in strengthening our community together. Working together, we have more to gain than when we are separate,” said Kenyatta who chaired the summit.
In a statement released in the Kenyan capital, Nairobi, Kenyatta expressed optimism that with a larger market of about 300 million people, the EAC will achieve better outcomes brought about by the economies of scale and pooling of productive human and financial resources.
He termed the admission of DRC into the EAC a historic event that demonstrates the agility of the community to expand beyond its socio-cultural boundaries to new people and trade centered partnerships and collaboration that will expand opportunities for citizens of the region.
Kenyatta pointed out that with the inclusion of the DRC, the EAC will be in a better position to combine resources to develop the much-needed infrastructure, especially the main transit corridors running from east to west.
“The said infrastructure is crucial in facilitating cross-border movements of goods, people and physical capital as envisaged in the EAC Common Market,” he said.
Other East African leaders commended President Felix Tshisekedi of the DRC for working hard to ensure his country joined the community, noting that the action he took is not only beneficial to his country but the region at large.
Tshisekedi in his inaugural speech thanked the EAC leaders for welcoming him to the bloc and assured of his commitment to working closely with them for the development and prosperity of the region.
The summit designated Kenyatta, the EAC Chairman, to sign the treaty of accession of DRC into the EAC by April 14. Enditem