The closure of the Rwanda-Uganda border is unfortunate and painful and a setback in the progress of East African Community (EAC) integration, former Kenya vice president Dr Stephen Kalonzo Musyoka has said.
Rwanda closed its border with Uganda in February this year when it accused Uganda of facilitating and supporting dissidents fighting to topple President Paul Kagame’s government. Kalonzo who was speaking at the 5th graduation ceremony of Uganda Technology and Management University (UTAMU) in Kampala where he is their current chancellor, said the tensions between Uganda and Kenya should be resolved as soon as possible.
He said such conflicts hold back the spirit of the East African integration something that is required if East Africa is to develop and compete with the rest of the world as a single unit.
“We are living in a global world and need integrations and collaborations to grow. Ugandan graduates should not look at opportunities in Uganda but the region as a whole,” said Kalonzo.
He noted that this could only be achieved once the countries have cordial relations and can help member still facing political challenges like South Sudan to overcome them.
“Seeing the border between Uganda and Rwanda closed is painful because the two countries should be living and working together for the good of East Africa integration,” Kalonzo advised.
Kalonzo called upon all the parties involved to come together and ensure that such conflicts are quickly resolved. He appreciated President Museveni for being the region’s father figure and said he should become the first head of the East African federation once it is formed.
He also advised the graduates to be innovative and use the knowledge acquired to be job creators but not job seekers so as to help the region fight off the high unemployment levels.
Uganda’s vice president Edward Kiwanuka Ssekandi who was the chief guest thanked the UTAMU management for their contribution towards human resource development in the country but challenged them to introduce teacher education especially for science teachers because the country needs more of them as they move from mass education to skill-based education.
“Science teachers are already earning well as the government tries to entice more of them to be in education to help produce skill-based graduates needed in the current job market,” Ssekandi added.
He also advised the graduates to live reasonable lives by avoiding drug abuse and promiscuity if they are to be productive and serve their countries and East Africa as a whole.Add your comments: Download Our News App Here