East African leaders expected in Ethiopia for IGAD meeting

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Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni departs for the Ethiopian capital, Addis Ababa, for the 13th ordinary summit of the Inter-governmental Authority on Development (IGAD). COURTESY: TWITTER/Kaguta Museveni

The heads of states and government representatives from Djibouti, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Kenya, Somalia, South Sudan, Sudan and Uganda are expected in the Ethiopian capital Addis Ababa on Friday for the 13th Ordinary Session of the Intergovernmental Authority on Development Assembly.

The meeting will focus on the body’s organisational structure and treaty as well ratification of the rotating head of the regional body.

The last such ordinary session was held in 2010 when then Kenyan President Mwai Kibaki handed over the chairmanship to then Prime Minister of Ethiopia Meles Zenawi. Since then, Ethiopia has continuously held the chairmanship through its three successive Prime Ministers, Zenawi, Hailemariam Desalegn and currently Dr Abiy Ahmed.

“I am pleased to welcome IGAD Heads of State & Government for the 13th Ordinary Session of the IGAD Assembly. Our region is making good progress and with political will & commitment, regional integration efforts for collective prosperity will materialize in the spirit of MEDEMER!” PM Abiy said in a post on his official twitter account.

Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni and his counterpart from Djibouti, Ismaïl Omar Guelleh, already arrived in Ethiopia while South Sudan’s Salva Kiir and Somalia’s Mohamed Farmajo are expected to arrive having left their respective countries.

The 47th Ordinary IGAD Council of Ministers got underway on Thursday.

During a session, the organisation’s new Executive Secretary Dr Workeneh Gebeyehu pledged to build on his predecessor’s momentum & contribute to the revitalization of the organization. Gebeyehu officially took over from Amb. (Eng.) Mahboub Maalim earlier in November.

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