EALA swears in Amb Mahiga as ex-officio member

10Mar 2016
Our Reporter
The Guardian
EALA swears in Amb Mahiga as ex-officio member

EAST African Legislative Assembly (EALA) has administered the Oath of Allegiance to Amb Augustine Phillip Mahiga, the Minister for Foreign Affairs, East African, Regional and International Co-operation as the sitting commenced in Dar es Salaam.

Ambassador Augustine Mahiga (r)

Dr Mahiga is now an ex-officio Member of the Assembly. The Oath of Allegiance to the House was administered by the Clerk of EALA, before the EALA Speaker, Daniel Kidega.

Mahiga took the oath in accordance with Rule 5 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 5(5) 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 Adam Kimbisa and Hon Angela Daisy Kizigha. Under Article 48 of the EAC Treaty, ex-officio Members of EALA consist of Ministers responsible for East African Affairs from the Partner States.

Under the same provision, the Assistant Minister, Deputy Minister or Minister of State may only participate in the meetings of the Assembly when the substantive Minister responsible for East African Community Affairs is unable to participate.

Amb Mahiga, was appointed Minister by President John Magufuli in the cabinet named in December 2015. Prior to his appointment, Amb Dr Mahiga, a diplomat, served as the Permanent Representative of Tanzania to the United Nations.

He was also the UNHCR Representative to Italy, Republic of Malta and Republic of San Marino.

Between the years 1994 to 1998, Ambassador Mahiga served as United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) Chief of Mission in New Delhi, India. He has also served as Chief of Mission in Monrovia, Liberia.

Amb Mahiga was appointed by Tanzania to the rank of Ambassador while on secondment to the UNHCR.

He rose into public service from the world of academia. Amb Mahiga was once a Senior Lecturer in International Affairs and Regional Co-operation at the University of Dar es Salaam, a post he held from 1975-1977.

Amb Mahiga earned a Bachelor of Arts (Education) at the University of East Africa in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania. He earned his Master of Arts degree at the University of Toronto as well as a Ph.D. in International Relations from the same institution.