East African Community has issued a report indicating that South Sudan is qualified to join the economic bloc, the Minister of Foreign Affairs has said.
Dr. Barnaba Marial Benjamin says the report was released during a high level ministerial meeting in Arusha, Tanzania.
The East African Community is a regional organization which aims at collectively improving political, economic, and social positions of its member countries.
It comprises of countries including Burundi, Kenya, Rwanda, Tanzania, and Uganda.
South Sudan applied for EAC membership soon after gaining its independence from Sudan in 2011.
But the young nation’s admission to the bloc delayed as member countries cited poor governance and its underdeveloped public institutions.
Dr. Barnaba Marial Benjamin says a special technical committee has been discussing the membership of South Sudan in the bloc in a series of meetings since May this year.
He says joining the East African community will help South Sudan overcome some challenges, which he did not specify.
Dr. Marial was speaking at the Juba International Airport upon his arrival Tanzania along with a delegation of 28 members on Monday.
“Now this report will now be presented to the Heads of State Summit of East African Community in November, and [they] will take the final decision according to the recommended position by the high level ministerial committee of the East African Council of ministers,” Dr Marial told reporters.
Dr. Marial said the government would brief the public soon about the membership in the East African bloc.
However, many political analysts have advised against joining the EAC, claiming that it could compromise and sacrifice the economic growth of the young nation because it’s got nothing economically practical to offer or export to those countries as to earn its hard currency, or stimulate its economy.