June 23, 2019 (Ezega.com) -- Ethiopian Army Chief of Staff General Seare Mekonnen was gunned down by one of his body guards in his home yesterday, according to media reports.
The identity of the gunmen and their motives are not yet known.
Also killed along with General Seare Mekonnen was former Army Logistics chief Major General Gezae Aberra.
Major General Gezae Aberra was likely killed while visiting his friend General Seare Mekonnen. General Gezae retired a few years after the conclusion of the Ethio-Eritrea war. He served with international forces stationed in Sudan afterwards.
Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed had disclosed yesterday that General Seare was attacked by what he called "hired" gunmen. However, the Prime Minister did not go as far as declaring General Seare Mekonnen dead.
Today, the leadership of the Tigrayan People's Liberation Front (TPLF) convened an emergency meeting and confirmed that General Seare Mekonnen is indeed dead. The Deputy Administrator of Tigray regional state, Dr. Debretsion Gebremichael, is expect to give a speech on the developments.
General Seare Mekonnen was TPLF fighter and later commander for many years. He joined the TPLF in his teens and progressively rose in rank through the organization. He is believed to have played one of the biggest roles in the Ethio-Eritrea war between 1998-2000.
General Seare was the commander of Northern Force facing Eritrea for several years until his move to Addis Ababa to lead the training department.
The death of General Seare Mekonnen is expected to reverberate throughout Ethiopia and beyond, with perhaps major implications to the credibility of the current government and even the unity and stablity of the country. Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed will find it extremely difficult to explain away such as breakdown of command and control as a small bump in an otherwise smooth ride.
Disregarding the lofty talk, to many Ethiopians, it is becoming clearer by the day that Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed doesn't seem to have much grasp or control over developments in Ethiopia. Given the discord within the governing party EPRDF (Ethiopian Peoples Revolutionary Democratic Front), it is unknow what, if any, will be done to stem the slide into anarchy.