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East African Legislative Assembly, Arusha, Tanzania, January 28 2015:The United Republic of Tanzania’s new Minister for East African Cooperation, Hon Dr Harrison George Mwakyembe was this afternoon sworn-in as an Ex-Officio Member of EALA.  The Oath of Allegiance to the House was administered by the Clerk of EALA, before the EALA Speaker, Rt. Hon Dan Kidega.

Hon Dr. Mwakyembe took the oath in accordance with Rule 6 of the Rules of Procedure of the Assembly. The Rules of Procedure say in part that: “No Member can sit or participate in the proceedings of the House until the Oath or Affirmation of Allegiance to the Treaty is taken”.

Rule 6(3) specifically states that “when a Member first attends to take his or her seat other than at the first sitting of a new House, he or she shall be brought to the table by two Members and presented by them to the Speaker who shall then administer the Oath or Affirmation of Allegiance”.

The Minister was ushered into the House by Hon Shem Bageine, Minister for EAC, Republic of Uganda, Hon Dr. Nderakindo Kessy and Hon Nusura Tiperu.

Article 48 (1) (b) (1) of the Treaty for the Establishment of the East African Community, requires the Minister responsible for East African Community Affairs from each Partner State to become an ex-Officio member of the East African Legislative Assembly.

Hon Dr Mwakyembe, was appointed Minister for EAC on January 24, 2015, following a Cabinet reshuffle by H.E. President Jakaya Kikwete. He swops places with the former EAC Minister, Hon Samuel Sitta who was moved to the Ministry of Transport.

Hon Dr. Mwakyembe is the Member of Parliament for Kyela Constituency since 2005.  He was an elected member of EALA in the first Assembly (2001-2005) and chaired the Tanzania Chapter of EALA for two years between 2003 and 2005.

Hon Dr. Mwakyembe who holds a PhD. In law from the University of Hamburg has several years of political experience.  He has been a Member of the National Executive Committee (NEC) of the ruling party, Chama Cha Mapinduzi for five years and also served as the party’s legal advisor in 2001.   Hon Dr. Mwakyembe was a Commissioner of the Joint Presidential Supervisory Commission in Zanzibar in 2001-2005. He was formerly a Deputy Minister for Works in 2010-2012.

He has lectured in law at the University of Dar es Salaam and is a holder of a Masters’ degree in Law from the University of Dar es Salaam and a similar one from the University of Hamburg. Hon Dr Mwakyembe, an Advocate of the High Court of Tanzania, also holds a Post-Graduate certificate in Intellectual Property from the University of Turin, Italy. Dr Mwakyembe was once a media practitioner, and holds a Diploma in Journalism from the Tanzania School of Journalism.

The Minister has published widely and attended several symposia, seminars and conferences.

 EALA has 45 elected Members and seven Ex-Officio Members.   The Ex-Officio Members are the Ministers of EAC in the Partner States, the EAC Secretary General and the Counsel to the Community.  The United Republic of Tanzania is the current Chair of the Council of Ministers, a post that Hon Dr. Mwakyembe assumes immediately.