KAMPALA, Uganda–Two key Bills critical to the establishment of the East African Community Monetary Union were yesterday tabled before the East African Legislative Assembly sitting in Kampala Uganda for first reading.
The two bills are the Monetary Institute Bill 2017 and the EAC Statistics Bureau Bill 2017 which were tabled by the Chair of the Council of Ministers, Hon Julius Wandera Maganda.
The bills sailed through the first reading and were referred to the respective EALA Committees.
The object of the EAC Monetary Institute Bill (EAMI) 2017 is to provide for the establishment of the East African Monetary Institute as an institution of the community responsible for preparatory work for the EAC Monetary Union.
In accordance with Article 23 of the protocol on EAC Monetary Union, the bill is expected to provide for the functions, governance and funding for the institute as well as other related matters.
Closely related to the EAMI Bill is the EAC Statistics Bureau Bill 2017, which also seeks to establish the Statistics Bureau as an institution of the Community under Article 9 of the Treaty and Article 21 of the protocol on establishment of the EAC Monetary Union.
According to the media reports, the EALA Committee on Communications, Trade and Investment is to hold public hearings on the EAC Statistics Bureau while the EAC Monetary Institute Bill will be handled by the General Purpose Committee.
The EALA Speaker, Rt Hon Ngoga Karoli Martin said though the bills were tabled by the Council of Ministers, they were coming to the House close to two years late. He therefore urged the Assembly to give both bills the due attention deserved.
Meanwhile, Hon Amb Dr Augustine Mahiga, Minister for Foreign Affairs and East African Co-operation in the United Republic of Tanzania was sworn in as an ex-officio Member of EALA.
In his remarks the Minister congratulated the Members of the Republic of South Sudan for joining the Assembly and noted the region looked forward to ensuring it (South Sudan) maximizes the benefits of integration.