Thank you, Mr Chairman, for giving me the floor. Chairman, I also want to singularly thank you for convening this meeting, and for your leadership. This is a good moment to revitalise the International Conference on the Great Lakes Region.

I wish to commend the Ministers of Defence and Health for the sound recommendations that have been presented. A collaborative and harmonised approach is the best way to deal with the security and public health challenges facing the Great Lakes.

There has been progress toward eliminating illegal armed groups in our region, but much remains to be done. It is past time to uproot these groups, once and for all. Peace is a precondition for development and prosperity. Similarly, Genocide fugitives should not find refuge anywhere in our region. They must be brought to justice.

Mr Chairman, before I conclude, I have to say there is no better way of achieving all our objectives than finding cooperation among the countries of ICGLR and therefore we have to keep working on that and taking it forward as we face the many challenges ahead of us.

Mr Chairman, let me once again congratulate you for the good work done and for your leadership and collaboration with all of us.

I thank Ambassador Muburi-Muita for his distinguished service to this organisation over the past four years, as we also congratulate the incoming Chair and the Executive Secretary who will be in office going forward.

Thank you, President, and dear colleagues and heads of delegation present.