By Azania Post Reporter, Dar es Salaam
As East Africans and thanks to the Internet, we are more and more looking to find out what is happening next door. It all began last Sunday as Azania Post published the first article of this thrilling story entitled Hidden agenda behind 20th COMESA Summit, little did we know that the story would become one of our most read piece in ages.
#COMESA and @sindisongwenya2 are currently the most used tags in tweets regionally. We asked ourselves what could be the reason behind this sudden interest for our first article? It created a heated debate amongst the Burundi Internet community as the pro and the anti-Burundi government still continue to develop on the matter.
Allow us to remind our readers that it was during the 2013 COMESA Summit held in Kinshasa, DRC when Burundi was chosen to host the 2017 COMESA Summit. During the 2014 COMESA Summit in Ethiopia in 2015, it was reminded that Burundi would host the 2017 Summit. Finally in October 2016 during the last COMESA Summit which took place in Madagascar, it was reconfirmed to all the 2017 COMESA Summit will be in Burundi.
On 21 May 2018, the COMESA Secretariat finally wrote officially to the Republic of Burundi informing them once again that the 20th COMESA Summit that was to take place in Burundi has been moved to Lusaka, Zambia at a later date in July 2018 and for, I quote: “Unexpected circumstances”.
We tried many times to get COMESA Secretary General Sindiso Ngwenya over the phone but he never answered our calls. We wanted to find out what he meant by “Unexpected circumstances”.
A new and unexpected twist in Sindiso’s plans
After several attempts at trying to find someone willing to give us the real motives behind we finally managed to talk to a source in Lusaka but that requested that his identity remains hidden.
It now appears that the Government of Zambia might have refused to host the 20th COMESA Summit unless it receives a written and signed document from the Bureau of the COMESA Authority which counts Madagascar as Chair, Burundi as Vice Chair and Ethiopia as Reporter.
Still, from our source, COMESA SG Sindiso Ngwenya might now be flying off to the second round of personally funded trips to the remaining COMESA member states trying to convince them to back him up in his attempt to highjack the 20th COMESA Summit from Burundi.
It’s now a draw at halftime, SINDISO 1_BURUNDI 1 as we impatiently wait for the full-time whistle of this break taking the story.
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Dar es Salaam, Tanzania