Security organs from EAC partner states met in Kigali in their final planning conference preparing the next joint Field Training Exercise (FTX), code-named Ushirikiano Imara, which will be held in mid October in Gako military academy.
According to army officers in Kigali, the practical training follows another one held in Nyakinama, Musanze district last year, named the Command Post Exercise (CPX), which was an office exercise.
The chairman of the meeting Frank Ng'anga from Kenya Defense Force said that the training will help them put into practice what was learned in theories. "During this field exercise we will be privileged to ensure that troops and every stakeholder who is in peace support operations is brought on board to be able to exercise practically what we learned in office to field."
On his side, Col Joseph Ndayishimiye, in charge of military training from Burundi, said that the training will mainly focus on the fight against terrorism, disaster management as well as violation of human rights within the bloc.
"We have to be prepared in time so that we can be able to jointly fight against any threat although it may happen in 20 years," explained Col Ndayishimiye.
The joint training meant to ensure the sustainability of peace in the bloc comes as another milestone along the regional integration process.
The participants involved in the activities include delegates from army officers, police, and prison services as well as EAC secretariat delegates.
As for the substance of field training exercise scheduled from October 14 to 28, more than 800 staff will participate. It is in accordance with the MoU of the defense council for EAC; the act Col Ng'anga said, it is meant not only for peace sustainability, but also for fortifying the integration process.
"This exercise helps partner states' troops to sit down, plan and exercise together, and understand one another, not only culturally, but also in operations, so that when called upon in case the need rises they can be able to work as a team towards their set goals," said Col Ng'anga.
The similar exercises took place in Kenya, Uganda and Tanzania in the past.