Arusha — EAST African countries have vowed to cement their joint cooperation on security to counter terrorism incidences, including the invasion of the notorious Al-Shaabab insurgents in the region.
That was among the resolutions contained in the communiqué signed by Presidents Jakaya Kikwete of Tanzania, Uhuru Kenyatta of Kenya and Uganda's Yoweri Museveni, together with representatives of presidents Paul Kagame and Pierre Nkurunzinza of Rwanda and Burundi, respectively.
"As heads of state, we have the responsibility to safeguard the freedom, security and fundamental rights of the citizens of East Africa.
We, therefore, treat issues of peace and security within our region and immediate neighbours as matters of strict urgency," summed President Kenyatta, who is the current Chairman of the EAC Summit during their just concluded 12th Extra-Ordinary Summit Meeting in Arusha.
According to Mr Kenyatta, people of East Africa deserve the right to be anywhere and do everything within their countries without fearing any attack from anybody within or outside the region.
The issue of regional security was also included in the resolutions from the preceding Council of Ministers Meeting as tabled by their Chairperson, Ms Phyllis Kandie, who is also the Kenyan Cabinet Secretary for East African Affairs, Commerce and Tourism, who touted the renewed enforcement of the regional Anti-terrorism strategies.
She cited recent cases of terror attacks in Nairobi and Mombasa cities of Kenya, as well as a series of other trepidations being experienced elsewhere in the region as being indicators that some outside forces were threatening peace in the region.
It was again due to security concerns that the Summit's decision on South Sudan's application to join EAC, had to be postponed to October 2014 following Juba's request that the matter be delayed, as the country is currently facing political and social unrest.