EALA MP to present motion backing Raila's AU chairperson candidacy

East African Legislative Assembly (EALA) MPSuleiman Shahbal. [Elvis Ogina, Standard]

East African Legislative Assembly (EALA) MP, Suleiman Shahbal, has announced his intention to present a motion during the upcoming plenary session calling on the East African Community (EAC) to unite in support of Raila Odinga's candidacy for the African Union (AU) chairmanship.

 In his statement, Shahbal emphasised Odinga's contributions to East Africa's integration and his extensive experience in governance, adding that his tenure as the AU High Representative for Infrastructure, underscored his commitment to regional development and connectivity.

 "Raila Odinga is a true East African statesman, whose leadership and vision have significantly advanced our collective goals of regional integration. His longstanding relationships with Heads of State across the continent underscore his ability to foster cooperation and unity," said Shahbal.

 The motion aims to garner widespread support within the East African Community for Odinga's candidacy for the AU Chairmanship, recognising his potential to lead the continent towards greater prosperity and stability.

 To start his campaign for the motion, Shahbal who is also the chairman for the EALA Committee on Communication, Trade and Investment sent a message to MPs asking for their support. The message reads.

 “Dear Hon Colleagues, The Rt. Hon. Raila Odinga is a great East African and has worked towards building our integration. He is a personal friend to most of our Heads of State. If he wins the chairmanship of African Union it will be an honour to all of us.

 It adds, “I intend to present a motion in the coming plenary to call on the EAC to rally behind our candidate and I am asking all of you for your support.”

 This comes a day after Mr Odinga declared interest for the chairmanship of the AU Commission. He made the declaration when he was with Former Nigerian president Olusegun Obasanjo.

 In his statement, Mr Odinga said; “I am inclined to accept the challenge and I am ready and I offer myself to be of service. I have asked my friend (Former President Obasanjo) to continue to be a good ambassador and talk to other people," he said.