November 30 has been designated as the EAC Day and all partner states of the East African Community will observe it as a public holiday.
This is contained in the bloc’s holidays’ bill that was passed by the East African Legislative Assembly. What remains is approval by the five heads of state of the grouping.
According to a statement from the EAC Secretariat, the day shall be an opportunity to reflect on the vision of the EAC integration process and to celebrate the progress made so far.
“That day, the official celebrations shall be held in rotational order in the Partner States, celebrating African renaissance and honouring citizens who have championed the cause of integration,” the statement says in part.
The Bill, presented on Friday by legislator Mike Sebalu, will provide a legal basis for holidays in the community, make provision for remuneration of employees who may be required to work on a public holiday and situations where the said holiday falls on a Sunday.
The Bill recognises all days of independence for partner states, and religious holidays.
The International Women’s Day, celebrated globally on March 8, shall also be observed by the EAC.
Disaster risk bill
Meanwhile, the debate on the Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Bill, 2013 was adjourned under Rule 31 of the Rules of Procedure following a request by the Chair of the Council of Ministers.
The Bill, sponsored by Patricie Hajabakiga, seeks to provide a legal framework for intervention and assistance for people affected by climate change and natural disasters
It further anticipates the protection of natural environment through integration of comprehensive DRR and Management practices in the Community and the creation of a regional mechanism that would enable a timely intervention in disaster situations.