| Misreading History and Political Science and the Exigency of Smooth Power Transition in Ethiopia
By Ghelawdewos Araia, PhD
February 22, 2018 - In the last three to four years, Ethiopia has been in constant political turmoil, ranging from Gondar and Oromia incidents to the Oromo-Somali confrontations in South East Ethiopia, to the Woldia-Kobo-Mersa protestations and subsequent deaths of innocent Ethiopians. All these protestations, euphemistically called mass upheavals by some disgruntled Diaspora Ethiopian groupings, were actually ethnic-based and ethnic-hatred disturbances; I label them as disturbances because in any historical context, revolutionary and peoples’ uprisings do not destroy and/or burn public propert
| Ethiopia: OPDO Elects Dr. Abiy Ahmed Chairman of the Organization
February 22, 2018 - The Central Committee of the Oromo People Democratic Organization (OPDO) elected Dr Abiy Ahmed as Chairman of the Organization, according to the FBC. This position was held by Lema Megerssa, who will now be deputy Chairman of the Organization, according to information obtained from office of the Central Committee of the Organization.
It is reported that the Central Committee of the OPDO unanimously voted the appointments of Dr. Abiy and Lema, the office indicated.
The latest move by OPDO will likely mean that Dr. Abiy Ahmed is the likely nominee of the organization to be the next Prime Minister of
| Command Post Issues Details of Emergency Law in Ethiopia
February 21, 2018 - The Command Post issued details of the State of Emergency declared on Friday by the Ethiopian Councils of Ministers, according to FBC.
In a press briefing, Secretariat of the Command Post, Minister of Defense Siraj Fegessa, announced details of prohibited actions and measures to be taken against anyone found in violation.
The State of Emergency forbids any action in breach of the constitution and constitutional order, or activities that erode tolerance and unity of the people as well as having link with and providing support to terrorist organizations.
It also prohibits obstructing t
| Ethiopian Foreign Minister Briefs Diplomats on State of Emergency
February 20, 2018 - Ethiopian Minister for Foreign Affairs, Dr Workneh Gebeyehu, briefed diplomatic community in Addis Ababa on the State of Emergency declared last Friday, according to FBC.
According to the foreign minister, the country is returning to peace and stability following the declaration of the State of Emergency
Instabilities were observed in some parts of the country at a time when the government of Ethiopia has been doing its level best to widen the political space, he told the diplomats.
The instabilities were resulted in losses of life and damages in properties, Dr Workneh added.
Since it was impossibl
| Ethiopian Council of Ministers Declares State of Emergency
February 16, 2018 - For the second time in as many years, the Ethiopian government has declared a state of emergency effective immediately. No end date has been given for the state of emergency just declared.
The measure was decided by the Council of Ministers, according to state broadcasting EBC. The announcement follows just a day after the current Prime Minister Hailemariam Desalegn submitted his resignation, including as head of the EPRDF and his own regional party, SEDPM. He led Ethiopia since 2012.
The EPRDF is currently holding extensive discussions to choose a successor.
| Ethiopian PM Hailemariam Desalegn Resigns
February 15, 2018 - In a surprise announcement, Ethiopian Prime Minister Hailemariam Desalegn has resigned from his position, including chairman of the EPRDF, Ethiopia's ruling party. While announcing his resignation, he said he hoped to end years of unrest and political upheaval and that his resignation was "vital in the bid to carry out reforms that would lead to sustainable peace and democracy".
Prime Minister Hailemariam Desalegn led Ethiopia since 2012.
According to latest information we recevied, the resignation was based on agreement by the four constituent
| Ethiopian Government Releases Bekele Gerba
February 14, 2018 - The Ethiopian federal attorney general announced that it has dropped charges against seven Ethiopian opposition figures, including Bekele Gerba, a prominent Ethiopian opposition politician. The other six are Gurmessa Ayana, Addisu Bulala, Dejene Tafa, Getu Garuma, Tesfaye Liben, and Beyene Ruda, according to Fana.
Bekele's release comes as stay-at-home protests were called by online activists all across the Oromia region, demanding the release of Bekele Gerba and others, and the protest has gone into effect as of Monday in several cities and towns in the region, which has been home to persistent anti-government protests
| Ethiopia Loses $840M Due to Post Harvest Losses - Jimma University
February 10, 2018 - A research conducted by Jimma University revealed that Ethiopia loses over 840 million US dollar from the post harvest loss of four crops. The study shows that there is a high loss of products /yields/ in Ethiopia in quantity and in quality so that it will affect the country’s economy.
Post harvest professor at Jimma University and leader of the study team Ali Mehamed said that the study focusing on reasons of post harvest loss and the solutions was conducted on wheat, maize, Sorghum and Haricot beans.
The study has covered 14 woredas of Tigray, Amhara, Oromia and Southern regional states and engaged farmers, harveste
| Yelekal Getnet to Establish New Poltical Party
February 10, 2018 - The former president of Ethiopian Blue Party, Yelekal Getnet (Eng.), announced plans to form a new political party. The name of the newly established party will be “Ethiopian National Movement (ENM)” and will submit its registration request to the National Electoral Board of Ethiopia (NEBE) by Monday, February 12, 2018, said Yelekal.
“In order to stop the fragmentations in opposition political parties, we are trying to sort out our problems within the party in an amicable way; hence, we were able come to a consensus. However, the existing leadership of the party blocked all possible ways of working t
| Ethiopian Government Pardons More Prisoners
February 8, 2018 - As part of its pledge to create national consensus and widen political space, the Ethiopian government has pardoned 746 prisoners today, including Andualem Arage and journalist Eskinder Nega.
Andualem Arage, Deputy Chairman of the opposition Unity, Democracy and Justice (UDJ) and Eskinder Nega, owner of several critical newspapers were jailed on September 2011 on terrorism related charges.
The Ethiopian government has since January released thousands of prisoners arrested in connection with unrest that rocked Ethiopia in 2016.
The unrest in 2016 led to the deaths of hundreds and was dubbed by
| Ethiopia Launches Job Creation Project for Refugees, Returnees
February 3, 2018 - A job creation project, which aims at supporting Ethiopian returnees and Eritrean refugees, was launched by the European Union Trust Fund for Africa and Ethiopian Government.
The two-year project with over 61 million birr budget benefits 1,500 potential returnees and 200 Eritrean refugees. The project areas in Addis Ababa are Arada, Addis Ketema, Kirkos, and Yeka sub-cities, while the value chain areas are leather construction and metal, it was indicated.
Speaking at the launching ceremony, Addis Ababa Bureau of Finance and Economic Development Deputy Head Girma Gidi said the project is expected to support the on
| Ethiopia Drafts Regulation for Drone Use
February 2, 2018 - Ethiopia is drafting a drone regulation that enables it to license drones and control its operation. “There are has been an increased drone activity in the country. Drones are posing threats to aviation safety and security in the world. Drones can easily be operated anywhere and can be used for various purposes. In other parts of the world there have been reports of drone collisions with commercial aircraft,” said Ethiopian Civil Aviation Authority (ECAA) director, Wossenyeleh Hunegnaw (Col.)
Ethiopia like many other countries has not yet introduced a drone regulation. However, individuals and businesses are importi
| Whereabouts of 2,273 Adopted Ethiopian Children Unknown – Government
February 2, 2018 - The Ethiopian government announced that the whereabouts of 2,273 children, adopted before 2014/15, is unknown. The government is digging deep to improve data on the thousands of Ethiopian children adopted by westerners over the years, according to Ethiopian Ministry of Women and Children Affairs.
Five years ago, the adoption debate kicked into high gear when a couple was jailed in the United States after an Ethiopian girl, 13, they adopted died under unclear circumstances.
Top US celebrities are known to have adopted Ethiopian children, amongst others: Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt. But, even celebrities like J
| Nearly One Million Ethiopians Displaced in Oromia–Somali Conflict - UN
February 2, 2018 - The United Nations (UN) announced that close to one million people have been displaced due to the conflict along the borders of the Oromia and Ethiopian Somali regional states. The data from the latest round of the International Office of Migration Displacement Tracking Matrix1 conducted in November, 2017 indicates that around one million persons have been displaced.
On the other hand, 637,000, almost 60 percent of the total displaced people are sheltered in camps. From this, the 68,000 are Ethiopian Somalis which are displaced between 2015 to end 0f 2017, according to the report.
At least 93,000 conflic
| Several Ethiopians Arrested Following Qobo, Mersa Unrest
February 1, 2018 - Ethiopia’s Amhara regional state announced that a number of civilian have been arrested for their role in anti-Ethiopian government protests that killed over 20 people in the state. The party governing the region, the Amhara National Democratic Movement (ANDM), also disclosed that the measure was taken after a central committee meeting.
The region, Ethiopia’s second largest state, is located in the north and was riled by anti-government sentiments in three town –Woldiya, Qobo,and most recently Mersa.
Even though the exact number of arrest is not known, Ethiopian political commentators are wondering why no Eth
| Ethiopia Cancels 400,000T Wheat Purchase Contract
January 28, 2018 - The Ethiopian government has canceled a 2.6 billion-birr wheat purchase contract. The contract was awarded to Pakistan-based Shakeel & Company for the supply of 400,000 metric tons of wheat.
The Ethiopian government cancellation came following the company’s failure to provide a performance guarantee and proceed to supply the wheat. According to the initial agreement, Shakeel is supposed to start supplying the bulk by December 2017 and finish by January 2018.
Following contract cancellation, the company will be barred from taking part in any future bidding activity in Ethiopia and i
| Ethiopia Pardons Over 2000 Prisoners
January 26, 2018 - Ethiopias Oromiya Regional State President, Lema Megersa, announced that over 2,000 prisoners have been pardoned. The move is part of Ethiopias government efforts to calm unrest.
The Ethiopian government has long been accused by rights groups of using security concerns as an excuse to stifle dissent and media freedoms. However, the Ethiopian government denies all the charges.
Last week the United Nations urged Ethiopian officials to review the status of a large number of people still behind bars.
U.N. human rights spokesman Liz Throssell said the Ethiopian government should review anti-
| China Communist Party, EPRDF Agree to Bolster Cooperation
January 23, 2018 - The Communist Party of China (CPC) delegation held discussion with head of Ethiopian People Revolutionary Democratic Front (EPRDF), Shiferaw Shigute as well as office’s urban politics and organizational sector coordinator, Fetlework Gebre-Egziabher.
The Ethiopian officials explained to CPC delegation about the recent conflicts occurred in Ethiopia. According to the Ethiopian officials, the problems were resulted from weaknesses of the organization and the government as well as the huge gap occurred towards creating employment opportunities.
Head of the CPC delegation for his part told the Ethiopia
| UN Concerned About Use of Force by Ethiopian Security Forces
January 23, 2018 - The UN High Commissioner for Human Rights voiced its concern about the use of force by Ethiopian security officials against worshippers celebrating the Ethiopian Orthodox festival of Epiphany this weekend that left at least seven people dead and a number injured.
The incident, in Ethiopia’s Woldiya City on 20 January, reportedly took place when Ethiopian security forces tried to stop people from chanting anti- Ethiopian government songs and allegedly opened fire on them. Protesters reportedly later blocked roads and destroyed a number of properties.
We call on Ethiopian authorities to ensure that the security forces
| 148 Rebel Members Surrendered - Ethiopian Government
January 23, 2018 - The Ethiopian government on said 148 members of the outlawed rebel group Gambella People's Liberation Front (GPLM) have surrendered to Ethiopian security forces. The Ethiopian government also said that the rebels had previously been based in neighboring Eritrea, but decided to return to Ethiopia to start normal life.
The Ethiopian government alleges the rebel group is supported by its archrival country Eritrea, while Eritrea accuses Ethiopia of supporting Eritrean rebel groups and running an international campaign to isolate the Red Sea nation.
Since Eritrea's independence from Ethiopia following a referend