By Norman Isaac Mwambazi
In the previous days, there have been loads of discussions about the decision by the Kenyan government to ban maize from Uganda citing low quality and having an intoxicant known as aflatoxins.
Economists, officials from the Grain Council of Uganda, those from the East African common market and those dealing in exporting maize have been popular faces on our televisions talking about the effects of the Kenyan ban on the Ugandan economy, and the way forward. Most of them have quoted the phrase “trade war,” although we can not categorically say that is what the Kenyan government had in mind when passing this ban.
As others are discussing the ban on our TVs and radio stations, controversial city lawyer Male Mabirizi Kiwanuka has decided to take the discussions to court. News reaching our desks indicates that Mabirizi has dragged the Kenyan government to the East African of Justice over its recent ban on the importation of Uganda and Tanzanian maize and eggs.
In a suit filed this morning, Mabirizi maintains that the Kenyan government contravened several provisions and principles as stated in the establishment of the East African Common Market.
“Article 3 states that the common market shall be guided by the fundamental and operational principles of the community as enshrined in Articles 6 and 7 of the treaty to which partner states undertook to observe the principle of non-discrimination of nationals of other member states,” Mabirizi says.
“The establishment of the East African Community Common Market Article 4(1) (2) states that the overall objective of the common market is to widen and deepen cooperation among the partner states not less favourable than the treatment accorded to third parties.”
Mabirizi claims that the decision by the Kenyan government breached the principle of non-discrimination, undermined common understanding and cooperation but also amounted to measures aimed at restricting the movement of goods and services contrary to the provisions for the establishment of the East African Community.
Now, Mabirizi wants the court to reverse Kenya’s ban on the importation of maize and eggs from Uganda and Tanzania, and award him costs.
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