Ethiopia: The UNOPS and World Bank funds will not go to the Tigray region… [if we have learned anything from previous history]

Addis Ababa, July 12, 2022 (FBC) –Ethiopia has signed a third-party implementation agreement with the United Nations Office for Project Services (UNOPS) for the implementation of the World Bank-financed recovery project in Tigray. According to the Ministry of Finance, the agreement was signed today by Ahmed Shide, Ethiopia’s Minister of Finance and Werknesh Mekonen, representing the UNOPS. The project is part of the government’s national recovery program financed by the World Bank with the name Response-Recovery-Resilience for Conflict-Affected Communities in Ethiopia project” (Fana Broadcasting Compnay – ‘Ethiopia, UNOPS Sign Agreement For Implementation Of Recovery Project In Tigray’ 12.07.2022).

It is hard to believe that the World Bank and UNOPS wants to sign an agreement with the Federal Government based in Addis Ababa. It is like the World Bank and UNOPS haven’t followed the acts of Addis Ababa and the regime itself. This isn’t the first rodeo and they should have known better. These funds will most likely not get to the ones in need in Tigray region. Neither will there be a will to implement it.

The Prosperity Party, the former consolidated parties from the former party coalition Ethiopian People’s Revolutionary Democratic Front (EPRDF), which left out the Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF). Who didn’t want to participate and be part of the new federal or national party. Therefore, the war in Tigray happened after long time of mistrust and after a local government election in September 2020. Which was just two months ahead of the start of the “Operation Law Enforcement” or prolonged warfare in Tigray. Parts of Tigray is still invaded and controlled by the Tripartite Alliance like the Western Tigray. While the Humanitarian Truce haven’t accordingly allowed humanitarian assistance to levels of need. That’s why 13 million people in the Northern Ethiopia is in a dire need of food security. Secondly, that is a man-made famine and created by the blockade, which has been a willed policy.

That’s why it’s striking that the World Bank and UNOPS signs off to this agreement. The Addis Ababa government have blocked the utilities, frozen banking and communications to the Tigray region. There was years and still no news of government funding to the regional government of Tigray. That will mean that there been no funds from Addis Ababa to Mekelle.

This was reported from 2018 to 2020 that the Regional Government of Tigray didn’t receive funds from the Federal Government. Secondly, the World Bank themselves financed a development project called: “Productive Safety Net Program (PSNP)”. It was reported that the FDRE got $66m USD to PSNP designated to Tigray in September 2020, but was blocked from the House of Federation (HoF). Therefore, with this knowledge… will the same happen again?

So, reading that the World Bank is funding another project and the RRRCAC today. It seems like a nightmare. These funds will not help Tigray… if so only parts of it. This is a life-line to the Addis Ababa government. They are using the conflict to replenish funds and the World Bank is willing to fund them. The state is in disarray… and there is so many regions that is bleeding. The Tigray region is war-torn and in a man-made famine.

The Federal Government have been punishing Tigray region continuously… just as this agreement was signed. There was reports of thousands of ethnic Tigrayans arrested for no other reason their ethnicity. That’s why I have hard time believing these funds will go to help or redevelop Tigray. The current leadership rather wants Tigray to burn or die. That’s their policy and how they worked over the last few years. Have a hard time that will change over night.

That will be lie. Just like all the meetings promising humanitarian assistance and opening of besieged region totally to humanitarian organizations. Something that is yet to happen, even when millions are possibly starving or lacking food security. Therefore, this news is tragic. That the World Bank and UNOPS are duped by the leaders of Addis Ababa. Peace.

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