EAC ministers responsible for education, science, technology, culture and sports have adopted the proposed budget of US$ 1,894,400 for the initial operationalization of the East African Science and Technology Commission (EASTECO).
Another US$ 2,009,041 for the initial operationalization of the East African Kiswahili Commission, for the 2013/14 financial year was also suggested.
Rwanda and Tanzania have been selected to host the Science and Technology and Kiswahili Commissions respectively.
The ministers who were in Kigali, Rwanda for the 1st Extraordinary Sectoral Council on Education, Science and Technology, Culture and Sports also adopted the revised draft Inter University Council for East Africa (IUCEA) Bill, 2012.
The meeting chaired by Ababu Namwamba, Kenya's Minister for Youth Affairs and Sports considered among others, the draft IUCEA Bill that proposes to enact a new Act on the Inter-University Council for East Africa, 2012, plans to operationalize the East African Science and Technology Commission and East African Kiswahili Commission.
It will also handle matters regarding Mutual Recognition Agreements that various professional bodies are currently working on to facilitate movement of labour and trade in professional services.
The draft IUCEA Bill passed by ministerial meeting was prepared to remedy anomalies and inconsistencies highlighted in the IUCEA Act (2009) following a comprehensive review of the same.
The Act in question, which the East African Legislative Assembly (EALA) enacted in 2009, was meant to effectively mainstream the Inter University Council for East Africa into the EAC but its operationalization has met with a number of challenges because some of its sections do not augur well with the EAC Treaty and the institutional position of IUCEA in the Community.
It doesn't cater for new developments in the provision of higher education.
The new Bill that aims to repeal the IUCEA Act 2009 will now be forwarded to the Council of Ministers--the EAC policy-making organ--for approval.