By Staff Reporter
August 8, 2020 (Ezega.com) -- Tilahun Yami, the prime suspect in the killing of the popular Ethiopian singer Hachalu Hundessa has pleaded "guilty".
Tilahun has been maintaining innocence since his arrest early last month along with other four suspects.
“I have been maintaining innocence because those people who hired me to murder Hachalu had warned to kill my family members if I pled guilty,” he told the federal First Instance Court on Friday.
Tilahun, as a hired killer, was accused of shooting Hachalu to death on June 30, 2020, near the Gelan Condominium site in Addis Ababa. The deaths of the singer caused ethnic and religious-based attacks which left at least 200 people dead and hundreds of others wounded.
Tilahun asked the court to provide all the necessary security protection to his family members and finalize the case at the earliest time possible.
Tilahun complained over the handling of prisoners in the detention center. “I want to be exposed to sunlight and the police shackles be removed from my hands. He asked the court to socialize with other prisoners.
During the previous court hearing, the defendant requested the court to allow him to commit suicide.
Police said the shackle was to protect the suspect from committing suicide. They assured the court that the detention center has enough light.
The court has ordered the Addis Ababa police to report on the matter during the next court hearing to take place on August 18, 2020.
Meanwhile, the same court on Friday denied bail to opposition party leader Eskinder Nega who was detained on charges of inciting violence in Addis Ababa following the death of Hachalu Hundessa.
During the July 16 pretrial hearing, Eskinder stated that he will press charges against members of the police who were involved in his beating.
Critics of Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed’s government say that Eskinder did not do anything and that they are unclear why he was arrested.
On the other hand, they accuse the government of failing to defend defenseless people massacred in different parts of the Oromia region of Ethiopia.
A mob crowd used sticks and machetes for targeted killings against non-Oromo ethnic people in several towns of the Oromia region.
According to the government, the number of casualties has reached 167 and more than ten of the victims were said to be members of Oromo regional state special police.
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