Ethiopia: PM Abiy Ahmed announce the formation of the Ethiopian Diaspora Trust Fund Advisory Council (09.08.2018)

One thought on “Ethiopia: PM Abiy Ahmed announce the formation of the Ethiopian Diaspora Trust Fund Advisory Council (09.08.2018)”

  1. The Ethiopian Diaspora Trust Fund Advisory Council (EDTFAC), as I understand it, is an assembly of people (individuals) appointed or brought together by PM Dr Abiy Ahmed to discus or deliberate the proposed Ethiopian Diaspora Trust Fund. Every member of the council may also be a councilor in this, what I would call, preliminary appointment.

    The Council is a preliminary appointment because it is an action taken by the PM preceding an important event. In other words, it is a move made by the PM in preparation for something fuller or more important. The fuller and more important something is an Ethiopian Diaspora Trust Fund.

    In general, a trust fund is a fictional entity given life or created by state legislatures of the state in which the trust was formed. There are many different trust funds and many different provisions that change how they work, depending on their specific purpose. However, any trust fund has three parties to it, namely, trustor(AKA grantor, settlor), trustee and beneficiary.

    In the context of the meaning of the proposed Ethiopian Diaspora Trust Fund, the three parties described above could be identified as contributing member, Dr. Abiy Ahmed, and priority projects, respectively. Notice that I intentionally excluded the PM title preceding Dr. Abiye Ahmed for a good reason, which could be a subject of deliberations later in the process that I prefer to skip for now.

    In summary, the trustor/grantor/setllor is the source of the fund, which he/she comites and makes available to the trustee to use to
    finance, based on grantor stipulations,
    beneficiary projects that will be identified and prioritized according to a set of criteria that will be determined by the trust clauses defined and decided by the grantor.

    In my humble opinion, the most important critical issues to be addressed by the Council at this preliminary stage should be to identify carefully and deliberate exhaustively the pros & cons, first and foremost, of giving life to the fictional entity, Ethiopian Diaspora Trust Fund, in Ethiopia versus abroad and then advise not only Dr. Abiye Ahmed (who is yet to be formally empowered as the trustee) but also, for obvious reasons, both existing and prospective grantors, who will be formally empowering the trustee.

    For a good number of reasons I can describe later in the conversation if we continue to engage, I, for one, recommend to seriously consider creating the entity in Ethiopian jurisdiction instead of doing it abroad, for starters.

    We can then get into the discussions about all other issues that will naturally follow with respect to possible roles of the Council as well as the diaspora Community members in terms of modalities that could be explored to promote, support and coordinate Ethiopian diaspora engagement in the development of Ethiopia, which you stated in your press release as the purpose which the PM formed the Council for.

    Kinfu Damene
    Atlanta, GA

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