Kampala, Uganda | GODFREY SSALI | The East African Community heads of state Thursday resolved to expand access to specialized health care and cross border health services in the region to preserve the region’s human capital base.
The leaders also agreed to strengthen the network of medical reference laboratories and the regional rapid response mechanism to protect the region from health security threats including pandemics, bio-terrorism and common agents. This they said, would ensure sustainable socioeconomic development.
In a joint communique, presented by the Secretary General of the East African Community (EAC) Liberat Mfumukeko, the leaders stressed the importance of strengthening health systems and preparedness to address both current and emerging challenges such as non-communicable disease like cancer and communicable diseases like HIV/ AIDS, malaria which pose significant challenges to regional development.
The resolutions were signed by Uganda’s Yoweri Museveni, Kenya’s Uhuru Muigai Kenyatta, Tanzania’s Dr. John Joseph Magufuli, South Sudan’s Salva Kiir Mayardit, Burundi’s First Vice-President Gaston Sindimwo representing Pierre Nkurunziza and Rwanda’s minister of Infrastructure James Musoni representing Paul Kagame.
On infrastructure, the leaders agreed to enhance capacity in infrastructure projects coordination, preparation and development at the national and regional levels to accelerate the realization of prioritized projects.
This during the first day of the two-day retreat for East African Community heads of state at Commonwealth resort Munyonyo under the theme “Deepening and widening regional integration through infrastructure and health sector development in the EAC partner states.’’