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Kenya, Uganda Presidents to Hold Talks for Tension De-escalation

Kenya, Uganda Presidents to Hold Talks for Tension De-escalation
Kenyan President William Ruto and his Ugandan counterpart Yoweri Museveni to meet next week for tensions de-escalation talks. Photo Courtesy

Kenyan President William Ruto is set to engage in diplomatic talks with his Ugandan counterpart, Yoweri Museveni, in the coming days to de-escalate tensions over a fuel import dispute.

This conflict has escalated to the point where Kampala has taken legal action against Nairobi at the East African Court of Justice (EACJ) after Kenya rejected a request for Uganda to use its pipeline to transport fuel directly from the port of Mombasa to Kampala.

Peninah Malonza, Kenya’s East African Community and Regional Development Cabinet Secretary (CS), confirmed on Friday in Kitui about the planned high-level talks between Presidents Ruto and Museveni.

The objective of this meeting is to diplomatically resolve the disagreement and improve relations between the two nations.

Malonza downplayed the dispute, emphasizing that each East African Community (EAC) member state is entitled to pursue its best trade interests within the democratic principles upon which they were founded.

She assured that Kenya continues to engage with Uganda and other EAC partner states on trade matters, highlighting the importance of working together for mutual benefit and promoting the welfare of East Africa’s people.

Acknowledging Uganda as Kenya’s largest trading partner and significant buyer of its oil, Malonza stressed the historical cooperation between Nairobi and Kampala.

Kenyan Foreign Policy understands the meeting will take place on the sidelines of the Non-Aligned Movement (NAM) summit to be held in Uganda next week.

The conflict between the two nations stems from Uganda’s legal action against Kenya over a failed oil deal.

Uganda withdrew from the agreement, citing concerns about profit-seeking middlemen inflating prices, contributing to a fuel crisis.

Uganda’s legal challenge accuses Kenya of violating the Treaty for the Establishment of the East African Community and its Protocol.

As the legal dispute unfolds, Nairobi is urging Uganda to continue using the port of Mombasa for fuel imports, despite Uganda’s exploration of alternative routes via the port of Dar es Salaam in Tanzania.

Kenya’s refusal to allow Uganda’s National Oil Company (UNOC) to register locally as an oil marketing company has been a key point of contention, prompting Uganda to seek alternative solutions and potentially impacting Kenya’s tax collections and the revenues of the Kenya Pipeline Company (KPC).



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