October 20, 2021

Uganda, Burundi Accuse EALA Speaker of Bias in Staff Recruitment

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EALA Speaker Martin Ngoga from Rwanda

The East African Community (EAC) Secretariat has called off the controversial job interviews in which Uganda felt it was unfairly edged out of the process by some of the partners states.

In a statement issued yesterday, the Secretariat’s media unit said the interviews that had been scheduled to start on Monday this week could not take off due to lack of quorum.

“Following successful profiling and shortlisting, the interviews were set to commence from October 18 to November 2. The Secretariat made all the arrangements for the shortlisted candidates to participate in the interviews through the video conferencing facilities at the ministries of EAC Affairs in the partner states,” the statement reads in part.

“The interviews could not commence as scheduled due to quorum. The interviews have, therefore, been postponed to a later date that will be communicated accordingly. The EAC is committed to providing an equal opportunity for all East Africans,” the statement adds.

The 42nd extra-ordinary meeting of the EAC Council of Ministers in May approved the filling of the vacant positions in the EAC organs and institutions through competitive recruitment.

In compliance with the directive of the extra-ordinary council meeting, the Secretariat advertised the vacant positions.

More than 15,000 applications were received from all the six partner states.

However, last week, Ugandan MPs claimed their citizens had been side-lined, especially for the job of the clerk.

The Speaker of East African Legislative Assembly (EALA), Mr Martin Ngoga who ia from Rwanda, was accused of bias by side-lining Uganda for the job of EALA Clerk and instead gave it to a Tanzanian national.

Ugandan lawmakers moved a motion, seeking to block the exercise, claiming it was full of fraud. South Sudan and Burundi backed Uganda’s concerns.

“The republic of Burundi took the decision of not attending the planned panels for the following reasons; the ongoing recruitment process does not guaranty the implementation of the quota system within the EAC since this has not been clarified before the said process begins,” Burundi stated.

The Minister for East African Affairs, Ms Rebecca Kadaga, also wrote a protest letter over the recruitment.

EAC recruitment guidelines

The recruitment is premised on the principle that citizens from all partner states should enjoy the same rights to employment opportunities accruing from the integration process.

Equally, the staff rules and regulations require that the recruitment will be done on a quota system, which provides that partner states must have points for its citizens to be considered as eligible candidates.

The rules provide that a country must have a minimum of 14 points. This, according to the Ugandan EALA MPs, makes Tanzania and Kenya ineligible to front candidates for the clerk position.

Source: Daily Monitor

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