48 49 The Republic of South Sudan (RSS) Joins the EAC What isyour involvement in the development of the Roadmap? In November 2016, the Council of Ministers direct- ed the Secretariat to develop a detailed roadmap for the integration of RSS into the EAC. I was as- signed the role of developing the detailed roadmap. Why is the integration of RSS such a challenge? Considering that RSS joins the Community nearly 20 years after the original Partner States agreed on the establishment of a Community, and given the breadth and span of policy, legislative,and regulatoryharmonisation that has taken place since then, challenges are inevitable. They include straight- forward issues such as resource availability, infrastructure, inter-connectivity, and inadequate supply and productive capacity of the RSS to effectively trade with the other Part- ner States. More complex issues concerning political, consti- tutional and peace & stability developments in RSS further complicate the process.All this is against the backdrop of a stretched resource base of the other Partner States and de- clining contributions from development partners. What role does the Roadmap play right now? The roadmap defines the administrative, institutional and programmatic activities that bring the RSS on board. It en- ables the Council to determine the financial and human resources required and the scope of capacity building and sensitisation. It also enables the RSS to include integration into the EAC as part of its national planning. The roadmap sets the benchmarks upon which the integration process into the EAC will be measured. The Republic of South Sudan can now find real answers to the question“Whyare we joining the Community and what will be the benefits for which we will be paying?” in the roadmap. What has marked 2017? The development of a detailed Roadmap for the integration of the Republic of South Sudan was significant. Another key event was the training and sensitisation of media profession- als from RSS on the regional dynamics and on the integra- tion process at the Community. This was an important step in bringing the influencers of public opinion on board and challenging them to be ambassadors of peace and develop- ment in RSS. What’s next? Next we get the wheels up. In the first instance, that means simply bringing representatives of South Sudan into the standard exchanges and platforms of the EAC. Representa- tion in the Councils, theAssembly and Technical Committees will be a first and significant step. I envisage this taking place by mid-2018. The second phase will be the process of policy alignment and testing the machinery of the integration by starting to implement regional projects and programmes. Koang Pal Chang, chairman of National Editors Forum in South Sudan This training helped us understand the benefits of integration, and made us part of the East African family. It’s now our role as journalists to impart this information to our people at home, and I urge all of us to go back home to educate our people on the benefits of this union. Capacity Building for Media Professionals from the Republic of South Sudan RSS accession to the EAC commenced with its application to join the Community in 2015. Following negotiations between EAC and RSS, the country became a full member of the EAC in 2016 after its ratifi- cation of the Accession Treaty.The GIZ-EAC programme supports the accession of South Sudan through the development of a roadmap for RSS integration and media training for South Sudanese journalists. More than twenty media professionals from South Sudan took part in the training to increase their ca- pacity to generate relevant content. The training was also to inform them about the structure and objec- tives of the EAC, enhancing the young nation’s integration into the Community. The Roadmap towards RSS Integration into the EAC Interview with Philip Wambugu, EAC Advisor on RSS Integration