Fast-track one-stop border posts, urges EALA

East African Legislative Assembly has called upon member states to fast-track all remaining works on the One Stop Border Posts to pave the way for implementation other integration projects.

The OSBPs are expected to reduce days and facilitate inter-regional and international transport. According to analysts, when exiting one country and entering another, OSBPs combine two stops into one.

Currently, OSBPs are running bilaterally. However, a report adopted by the regional House in Kigali says the facilities are easing the free movement of people and goods.

Due to crucial role one stop border posts play, the report calls upon member states to assent to the OSBP Bill to give it legal effect in the whole region.

A statement signed by Bobi Odiko, senior public relations officer at East African Legislative Assembly said member states are implementing the OSBP initiatives bilaterally as they await for completion of the assent process.

“At the moment, the Bill which was introduced by the Council of Ministers is in Rwanda for the final assent. Already, the Burundi, Kenya, Tanzania and Uganda have assented to the Bill, the statement added.

The recommendations are contained in a report of the Communication Trade and Investments (CTI) on the OSBPs in EAC Partner States debated and passed of the House. The report was presented to the House by Kenya’s Nancy Abisai.

Assessed projects

EALA members undertook an On-Spot Assessment on the one stop border posts in EAC partner states in the months of April and September 2015.

Phase one of the assessment covered Mutukula (UgandaTanzania), Mirama HillKagitumba (UgandaRwanda) and Rusumo (RwandaTanzania) posts on April 8 to 11 this year.

The second phase covered LungalungaHoroHoro (KenyaTanzania), TavetaHolili (KenyaTanzania) and Namanga (TanzaniaKenya) posts from September 30 to October 3.

The objectives of the one-spot assessment was to find out the status of implementation of the OSBP projects and its effect on the movement of people and the EAC business environment.

It also set to interact with stakeholders and identify opportunities and challenges affecting the implementation of effective OSBPs and to come up with relevant recommendations.

Stakeholders who participated in the on-spot assessments included revenue authorities, immigration, bureau of standards, police and clearing and forwarding Agents.

SOURCE: THE EAST AFRICAN