Ethiopia: Will Abiy use this State of Emergency to crack-down on others?

I tend to support ‘State of Emergency’ measures put forward by a state or a government, when it will be done to battle insurgency or against epidemic. I understand them both. The Prosperity Party and Prime Minister Ali Ahmed Abiy is issuing his first one. It is not new with “State of Emergency” in Ethiopia. Therefore, I am sceptical and hesitant.

Even if this State of Emergency is issued for 5 months. The plan is to be delegated and controlled by the Council of Ministers, instead of the Command Post. Because of the history of Command Post. Just like people doesn’t trust the Liyu Police in the Ogaden Region. It is reasons for that, the violence, the crack-down and misuse of power towards the citizens. The same is the worry of the soldiers stationed in Amhara beating on supports of FANO. Just like the soldiers going against the querro in Oromia and so fourth. This sort of State of Emergency usually tends to be like that.

Even if this State of Emergency is placed because of the COVID-19 or Coronavirus. I have a feeling it will be used to get people more submissive to the Prosperity Party and the leadership of Addis Ababa. Expect Gondar, Jigjiba, Dire Dawa and Bahir Dar to be hit in these times. I wouldn’t be shocked to see leaked viral clips of assaulting soldiers to innocent civilians. Even reports of arrests and burning houses. Because, that is how these things to spiral out.

I’m awaiting blocked phone-lines, expect social media black-out and internet blockage, which the state has used rampantly in the Oromia region. Therefore, now that they have a legal basis. Have orders from the Central Government, the PP can act like the EPRDF did in the past and can shield information will suppressing the voices of the various regions. While using the COVID-19 as a excuse to do it. It is the perfect storm. The way of preparing the violence before the postponed elections and ensure supremacy. Without having to battle the alliances elsewhere.

The social distancing, the washing hands and the closure of state has happen elsewhere. The world is under a near global lockdown and states has issued similar means. However, the PP and its predecessor EPRDF has misused this in the past and that is not in ancient times. But it was done in the last decade and lots of systemic violence to stop the eruption of protest against the regime. Therefore, with the knowledge of that. I am worried. That is done to dismantle the voices against the government and not stop the spread of the virus itself.

The pictures of soldiers walking in the streets of Amhara, the voices of concern from Ogaden and the arrests of OLF leaders in Oromia. Shows the reasons for fear and worry. If your not, your ignorant to the way the leadership in Addis Ababa has controlled the Republic.

I hope I am wrong, because this COVID-19 is no joke. It is dangerous and contagious. It spreads so quickly and kills. While we have no direct cure or have vaccine for it. Therefore, there is a need to drastic measures to await the possible cure. However, the state who uses lockdown measures has to do it transparently and do it in the open. So the public can trust and live with it in hope, that the government act for their best interests.

Well, in this regard, I am worrying. I hope I am wrong. Because, that would have been nice. However, history teaches us things and the way people operate. Leadership can do reforms, but the reoccurent theme is that only goes skin-deep and is in rhetoric. Not in actual change of protocol nor actions. This is why I fear things. The TPLF is maybe out of the PP. However, the PP is still more of the same and they might strike with vengeance. Now that they have the opportunity. Peace.

Ethiopia: Did PM Abiy praise the Derg and their revolutionary “Call of the Motherland”?

With little training, Ethiopians rallied to the ‘mother’s call’ – the mother country cry for protection against the enemy. The Derg government offered a call for a short time and made it by bringing back respect of the country. It is in our history to pay for our country’s sacrifice and sacrifice ourselves for our country. Soon enough the invaders felt the wrath and the blade of Ethiopian heroes who were prepared to go to any length and sacrifice to defend their motherland. Within a short period, not only was the Somalia invader defeated but the territorial integrity, sovereignty and respect of the nation was restored in full. Rubbed the wrong way, the lion roars, the true Ethiopian rises to glory” (Dr. Abiy Ahmed Ali, 05.03.2020).

I don’t have the answers here. This is loosely translated from his Facebook post. However, the way it mentions thing it started me to question things and look into it. He celebrated the Karamara victory, the one where Ethiopia successfully where able to annex the Ogaden or the Somali region of the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia. Therefore, it is hot topic to begin with, as the Ethiopian are seen as invaders and as colonizers of the region to begin with.

It is reason why its called the Somali region or Ogaden. Because, it’s belonging to the Federal Republic of Somalia. Now, its been like this ever since, ever since the loss of the war. Still, there are Ethiopian forces fighting for Mogadishu government at the mercy of Addis Ababa. This is known, so for the Prime Minister to celebrate this. Really, shows there are some aims at supremacy for the Prosperity Party and the Prime Minister.

He recalls old glories and even uses wordings, that former Dictator Megistu used to rally up the forces for the “Red Terror”. Using wordings that resembles the battle-cry of the DERG. For me that is weird. Not patriotic, but a sign that the man isn’t that peaceful after all.

Small fragments of the “Call of the Motherland”:

Mengistu took a war-like stance against these threats in the aftermath of the coup on February 3, 1977. A communique issued in the name of the Derg on the following day pointed out that Ethiopian progressives (members of Mengistu’s coalition) had been unable to take action against the counter-revolutionaries because of the dominance of the reactionaries and their supporters in the Derg? it then stated that the revolution’s strategy would, from that day, be transformed from the defensive into the offensive. In his address to a rally held on the same day, Mengistu condemned Teferi and his faction, EPRP, EDU, the Eritrean Liberation Forces, the conservative states of the region and imperialism as enemies of the Ethiopian revolution. In his address at another rally on April 12, Mengistu again condemned the same forces and asked the Ethiopian people to rally around the banner of ‘Call of the Motherland’ and fight the enemies of the revolution(ANDARGACHEW TIRUNEH – The Ethiopian Revolution (1974 to 1984), P: 285-286, 1990).

Government dailies had a section of their front-page devoted to the “Call of the Revolutionary Motherland” from the beginning of May 1977. From the outset, the media campaign combined calls for the defense of territorial integrity with encouragements to denounce internal opponents. See e.g. Ethiopian Herald, 3 May 1977, ‘Call of Motherland: to defend the frontiers, to protect the revolution and to increase production’” (Jacob Wiebel – ‘Revolutionary Terror Campaigns in Addis Ababa, 1976-1978’, 2014).

French MilAtt was informed March 5 by Soviet MilAtt that Jijiga had been recaptured that morning. Soviet also confirmed that Kara Mara Pass had fallen to Ethiopians. French MilAtt believed that major thrust toward Jijiga was from NNW and was combined Ethiopian-Cuban operation. French MilAtt further stated that Ethiopians took heavy casualties” (Office of the Historian – ‘69. Telegram From the Embassy in Ethiopia to the Department of State’ Addis Ababa, March 6, 1978, 1407Z 1054. Subj: Ethiopian Forces Recapture Strategic Ogaden Town of Jijiga. Ref: Addis Ababa 1025).

So, for someone calling himself a reformist and a man whose mission is to make the Republic better. He surely brings back memory of a regime and a type of government he shouldn’t associate himself with. Especially, this is a insult to the Somali and Somalia. They have answered this. Even Oromo leader Mohammad Jawar has addressed it. Therefore, the backlash has occurred.

Still, there is need to ask if this is a gaffe or an intended approach by the Prime Minister. As he has created his “one-party” ahead of elections and with statements like these. He will gain supporters and show flex. However, his also reminding people of a bloody past. A past where the state used terror against dissidents and used all means to stay in power. Therefore, the Prime Minister should consider that.

That its that easy to think in this direction, by the words and wording in his statement. Should boggle us in 2020. As he should not rewrite and praise the Derg, but instead condemn it and their ill-actions. The ramifications plenty of people are still living with today. The EPRDF has used techniques the Derg did too.

As his supposed to reform, he should know better. However, seemingly he wants this messages out. I just question it. As it sparks some memories and his wording isn’t making it better. Especially, when his trying to be a peacemaker in the region. Instead, this way his just another imperialist with in sheep’s cloth. A hidden wolf awaiting his time eat. Peace.

Final communique of the Council of Oromo Traditional Leaders (Abbaa Gadaa) and Somliland Traditional Leaders (19.12.2018)

Joint Declaration between the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia and the Ogaden National Liberation Front (21.10.2018)

Ethiopia: Should we worry about the Growing Violence during the short tenure of PM Abiy Ahmed?

The Ethiopian government continues their crackdown on demonstrations and protesters, even if there are positive steps towards better governance within the Ethiopian People’s Revolutionary Defence Force (EPRDF). Still, the government have not stopped using the army and there has still be lots of fatalities since the appointment of Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed Ali in April 2018.

Though Abiy’s tenure has been heralded as a pacifying influence, the number of violent events and protests have actually increased by over 8% in the 6 months since he has taken office, relative to the 6 months prior (from 388 to 420 events). This has corresponded to an increase of over 48% in the number of reported fatalities from 644 fatalities in the 6 months before Abiy took office to 954 fatalities from April to October” (ACLED – ‘CHANGE AND CONTINUITY IN PROTESTS AND POLITICAL VIOLENCE PM ABIY’S ETHIOPIA’ 13.10.2018).

This is from someone who follows conflicts and violence has not stopped, but surged a bit. The positive vibes and the diplomatic steps within the Horn of Africa haven’t helped internally. As the sins of the past and the seemingly revenge of the Oromo’s has happen too.

This was also proven further in the report from ACLED: “There has been a marked increase in intercommunal violence since April 2018, concentrated largely in Oromia, Southern Nations, Nationalities, and Peoples’ (SNNP) Region, and Amhara. Between April and October 2018, there were 43 violent interactions between communal militias (an increase of over 168%); over that time period, such intercommunal violence accounted for 10% of the overall number of violent events. Violent events between communal militias and civilians have also been on the rise since Abiy took office, rising from 1% of events in the six month period prior to Abiy’s swearing in to 5%.The prevalence of this violence suggests that local flashpoints over access to resources and mobilization around ethnic lines is on the rise since Abiy took office. Mobilization along ethnic lines during this period of political change may be a result of the Ethiopian government’s system of ethno-federal regionalism; emphasizing ethnic identity may be a way for ethnic groups and ethno-regional politicians to signal their strength and jockey for influence” (ACLED – ‘CHANGE AND CONTINUITY IN PROTESTS AND POLITICAL VIOLENCE PM ABIY’S ETHIOPIA’ 13.10.2018).

We should really worry with the risign communal militias that has sky-rocketed, this has happen in the Ogaden Region or Somali Region. The Oromo and Queero and Liyu Police has really taken it in their own hands and held the ethnic Somali people down. This is worrying, as the Djibouti government even became worried about the escalated violence in the region, but there have been nothing from Villa Somalia on the matter. Maybe, because the Ethiopian National Defence Force (ENDF) is part of AMSIOM.

I am worried about this and the consequences, as the Oromo are doing what the Tigray did to them. But instead of retaliating, they are acting supreme elsewhere. Amhara is also played around with, as the former terrorist organizations are now allowed to return from Eritrea, as the peace between the neighbors are making it more possible to work together. This being Ginabot 7 and Oromo Liberation Front. These will also add possible local conflicts and surge mobilization, which is now combined with the return of other heroes. Could either create a better regime or more hostility, which have already seen.

These numbers are really worrying. This is not positive news, also the grand amount of fatal deaths during protest isn’t winding down, but become worse.

PM Abiy has work to do and clearly change even more within the ethical borderlines, but also the need for dialogue. This dialogue has to happen internally, PM Abiy have been busy with the neighbors, but not within region since he quit his national tour early in his tenure. 

Should we worry if this persist or change, as the numbers of mobilization and fatalities, are showing signs of not hope, but of death. The EPRDF and the PM needs to focus on what the internal issues and the concerns of these numbers. However, we should also know these numbers of fatalities are people, not just mere statistics. That is why the PM should take action and not see the surge, but a healthy decline. As the public should worry about this too. Since the appointment of the PM gave us much hope, but the reality of his reign isn’t as positive as it could have been. Peace.

Is the Ogaden crisis escalating into a civil-war?

The Somali Region or the Ogaden Region have been under-fire for months. Over the weekend the Ethiopian People’s Revolutionary Defence Force (EPRDF) send the Ethiopian National Defense Force (ENDF) to takeover the capital of the region, they ceased the important buildings as the looting and destroying of city, therefore, the army took the Parliament, the banks and major buildings. While the local group Heego of Abdi Illey created havoc. By Saturday, there was reports of calm, but the army was out and the Liyu Police had taken control.

Today on Monday after time in house-arrest, Illey have been sacked and he has gotten a successor by the authorities. However, the violence isn’t slowing down, but escalating to heavy proportions. You can wonder how many Somali people have to die, because of the will of Oromo to annex this region and its resources. Oromo People’s Democratic Organization (OPDO) and the EPRDF needs to react and stop the violence. That Dr. Abiy Ahmed Ali have been silent and not really reacted, but let the Oromo attack these areas and killing, also accepting the army ceasing JigJjiga, isn’t a good sign. That is a sign of internal battlefield within the Federal Republic. Not pacing down, but more violence and more hurt for innocent civilians.

The town of Tuliguleed has been a flash point for conflict between indigenous Somalis and Oromo settlers in the past but what has transpired in the past 24 hours has never been seen before. Heavily armed Oromo militia’s launched an indiscriminate attack on multiple Somali inhabited villages on the border between Ogaden and the neighboring Oromo regional state. Armed Oromo militia’s entered the villages and began indiscriminately opening fire on civilians, forcing hundreds to flee to the nearby town of Tuliguleed and the surrounding areas. The rogue paramilitary militia’s began subsequently burning villages to the ground, till it was completely ash. A total of nine villages where burned to the ground” (Halgan Media – ‘Oromo Militia’s Burn Down Nine Villages In Ogaden Within The Past 24 Hours’ 06.08.2018 link: http://halganmedia.net/oromo-militias-burn-down-nine-villages-in-ogaden-within-the-past-24-hours/).

There are reports of violence also in Harar, Dire Dawa and not only in the areas around Jigjiga. But this is deliberate activity, especially when the authorities have cut the Telecommunications, the internet and everything else used to spread a single word. This is what the EPRDF have done in Amhara and Oromia, when they have forced their State of Emergency to control these areas. Instead of doing it there by the Tigray People’s Liberation Force (TPLF), not the Queero and the Oromos feels big enough to charge at the people of Ogaden. This happens as the oil revenue has come.

This comes after killings last month in Moyale, as their been movement and seems to be planned violence now within the Ogaden. Like they want to burn and destroy, so they can move in and occupy it. It is an ancient tactic done by plenty and now the Oromo is doing it to their Somali brothers. This is sad as the Oromo and Oromia have been protesting and fighting for their rights. Instead of living in solidarity and trying to forge unity with the rest of the Federal Republic. They are using violence against brothers. That is just sad and mediocre of the people whose deserved to be free from toils of the TPLF. Is using the same means and deception of violence against others. They should know better, because they really had their hurt and pain for so long because of EPRDF.

It is impossible to know at the moment how many whose died in the skirmishes from ENDF and Queero in Ogaden. But each one, is one to many, just like every single one dying in Oromia because of the TPLF, was one to many. No one deserves to die because of the attitude of supremacy or ideals of that sort. Peace.

Djibouti: Le Premier Ministre – Communique du Gouvernment de la Republique de Djibouti (06.08.2018)

Opinion: Will PM Abiy act righteous for the Ogaden region?

We have seen how the Ethiopian government and the Ethiopian People’s Revolutionary Defense Force (EPRDF), the coalition government, which have selected Oromo People’s Democratic Organization (OPDO) own man as Prime Minister Dr. Abiy Ahmed Ali. He has been on a peace-mission and been visiting and signing agreement with Eritrea, been in Djibouti and even made engagement with the Federal Government of Somalia. However, with his connections and peaceful endeavors. There is one piece now missing.

As the EPRDF and the TPLF have tried to amend with the opposition of the Oromia and the Amhara. But the Ogaden/Somali Region haven’t been taken care of, where the Oromo or the Queero “The Youths” have been used to annex or to further control the region. That seems more plausible, as the oil production started in late June 2018. This will be an important source to the foreign exchange and revenue for the state, as the economy of Ethiopia haven’t been that strong of late. They need this more than they will ever say in public. Would make any reason to secure the oil and gas resources in the Ogaden.

We know the state are doing what they can to get control over the situation of yesterday, as they have cut electricity, internet is down and even water was cut. Therefore, the 1000 of soldiers, ceasing of the Jigjiga. Only thing that was working was the telephone lines. The day after the fatal day of Heego and looting, shows that the army isn’t there, but the Liyu Police has taken over. Still, this is not a certain situation. To close these basic needs of after the hostile takeover yesterday, isn’t coming in peace, but showing supposed strength. Not trying to fix the issues or even address the mischief.

The Prime Minister Abiy if he can clear the air between him and the Eritreans, he should be capable to do the same for the Ogaden. If he doesn’t have a plan to takeover the Ogaden and make that a giant colony of the Oromo. I don’t think that is wise idea and will only hurt the moves for peace and national reconciliation that is needed after all the protests from Amhara and Oromo. Now the same violent and deteriorating activity is happening in Jigjiga. Where they are feeling the same sort of pain, that the others has done.

Abdi Iley, the leader of the Heego is reported to be under house arrest. While there is not certainty what is really happening in the city. As the major buildings was ceased and the Regional Leadership have lost their power in a way. Since the hostile takeover yesterday.

We don’t know how many who died, as there been various reports of both police officers, soldiers and civilians dying as a result. All these deaths are tragic, as their lives was cut short because of naked ambition from both parties. The control of the Ogaden, the control of the oil and own will to reign supreme.

We have to hope this will not escalate, as this is bad enough as it is, and the oil curse has hit Ethiopia. As the greed and the lack of service delivery are hitting the government. They feel left behind, as the oil and gas production have appeared and the Somali Region wants their fair share. That is obvious, as well, as the EPRDF shown disregard for the Somali public.

Hopefully, there will be movement and signs of progress, but right now, it is just a hostile takeover of Jigjiga and lack of reasoning from the EPRDF. The EPRDF and PM Abiy should meet and greet with the Ogaden/Somali Region leadership, try to work the issues out like gentlemen. Not just send the army to takeover the area, like it is war. That is just unreasonable and disgraceful, just like cutting of basics for living like electricity and water. Peace.

Ethiopia: The Economy is struggling, not a rising lion as previously forecasted!

For as long as I can remember there gone stories of the amazing rise of the Ethiopian economy, the financial markets and the outputs out of this world. Where the money would grow ten-folds within minutes of its arrival. Like a mirage the number’s must have appeared in front of our eyes and stories that, we are told over the recent years. The Ethiopian powerhouse and the serious contender with Nigeria and South Africa. With their railways, banks and development projects, the powerful dam and all the others. It must have been a ride for the Ethiopian People’s Revolutionary Democratic Front (EPRDF), Prime Minister Hailemariam Desalgn, must be so proud of his achievement.

Why I say that, because a booming economy does not do this:

“Ethiopia and World Bank have signed a 1.3 billion dollar grant and loan agreement to enhance equitable services and reduce food insecurity. The agreement was signed by Abraham Tekeste (PhD), minister of Finance & Economic Cooperation (MoFEC) and Carolyn Turk, World Bank’s country director for Ethiopia, Sudan, and South Sudan” (All Africa, 2017).

So when a booming economy, that has such magnificent rates and growth prospects should not and no need for extensive borrowings from the World and subsidiaries, to say they need so is a lie. The debt and the international support for projects and food security is not a sign of a sound and strong economy. More of the latter if I beg to differ. On that, alas the recent weeks has proven this. World Bank was ushered in the end of September, but it is now cash-crunch time.

Not the jolly Captain Crunch, but the credit is due.

“Ethiopia will devalue its currency to attract foreign investment and close the gap in foreign trade, President Mulatu Teshome said at the opening of the bicameral parliament on Monday. He said his government is faced with a serious shortage of hard currency and export trade has dwindled in last three years. Mulatu said major projects like the construction of railway and universities will not be carried out this budget year due to a serious shortage of finances” (ESAT, 2017).

The seriousness is there and it is bleak, when the President Teshome shows up and spread enlightenment to the world. That the economy is fragile and not at its peak, is clear when all the prestige and the giant projects are now put on hold until further notice. Clearly, the financial strains have hit the economy, as well as their exports has given them less hard currency.

It does not go well, when just days ago, when this hit the fan as well:

Double-digit inflation keeps threatening the macroeconomic conditions of the country as the headline inflation rate hit 10.8pc last month, according to the Central Statistical Agency (CSA)- the highest since October 2015. It is in contrary with the target of the government in the second edition of Growth & Transformation Plan (GTP II) to keep inflation in a single digit. The hike in the price of cereals such as teff, maize, wheat, barley, beans and sorghum coupled with holiday-driven price upsurge is the primary reason for the inflationary pressure last month, keeping the food inflation stagnant around 13pc.“As September is a time of multiple holidays, it is believed to influence the increase in the inflation rate,” the report of CSA reads” (Berhane, 2017).

That the cash crunch and the double-digit inflation hits the Republic is not a good look. The proof of the currency value falling, lack of hard currency and new Multi-National loans proves that the Financial Sector and Financial Institutions are strained. There is nothing more to give, it is just bones and not meat. It is just a matter of time before the boiling bones gives no taste to stew as well!

In addition, you the economy is bonkers when their agency spread out this sort of tales, at the time the devalued currency is told to the public on other platforms.

This is from the Ethiopian News Agency:

“The diplomats, who observed the government’s direction at the joint session of the parliaments, whom ENA has talked to also forecasted the country`s economic growth to be amplified in better manner referring the current stability of the nation. Ambassador of Bangladesh to Ethiopia Monirul Islam said the growth that Ethiopia’s economy has witnessed was ‘wonderful’ despite the drought and other problems. “It was 10.9 percent and this year I hope it will be more than that because there is a good rain, everything is good, the state of emergency has been lifted and everything is normal”. “So I think the economy should perform better especially in the agriculture sector as well as in the industry sector”, he pointed out” (ENA, 2017).

I do not know if Ambassador Islam lives in alternative reality or trying to sugarcoat the situation of the dire economic state that the Republic is facing, but it makes good propaganda for the ones who still want the fantastic picture spread around the globe. That the Ethiopian economy is sound and still growing. However, it is hard to grow when you lack currency, you have growing inflation and you are borrowing more funds. I do not know, which economy or financial system that it works splendid in. Certainly not this one.

In addition, the news of the financial rising tiger or lion of Ethiopia has been a mirage, a fraud and play for the world to see. At this stage and in time, it is far from it. The Ethiopian economy is plummeting and at amp speed. If you eat up the crap the ENA serves you, it must certainly serve your kind, but it is not reality. The President even said so, the reports are striking and the added loans proves the dire state.

The ones who is the most hurt. It is the citizens who needs the hard currency to buy food and live, they are punished for the reckless care of the financial system. They are the ones who suffers, because of how the state decided to conduct their affairs. They are the ones who feels the inflation, the rising prices and still has to get by. It is not right, but that is how it is. The Ethiopian government should subsidize and make sure the people get enough. However, do not expect that. This is from the same government that sent Agazi squad to Amhara and Oromia to kill and destroy. They do not care, unless they have too or if it keep them in power. Peace.

Reference:

All Africa – ‘Ethiopia: World Bank Assents U.S.$1.3 Billion Finance to Ethiopia’ (30.09.2017) link: http://allafrica.com/stories/201710090243.html?utm_campaign=allafrica%3Aeditor&utm_medium=social&utm_source=twitter&utm_content=promote%3Aaans%3Aabljpw

Berhane, Samson – ‘Gov’t Sees Double Digit Inflation, Again’ (08.10.2017) link: https://addisfortune.net/articles/govt-sees-double-digit-inflation-again/

ESAT – ‘Ethiopia President Says Country is Broke’ (09.10.2017) link: https://www.tesfanews.net/ethiopias-president-says-country-financial-crisis/

ENA – ‘Diplomats Laud Economic Performance of Ethiopia’ (10.10.2017) link: http://www.ena.gov.et/en/index.php/economy/item/3814-diplomats-laud-economic-performance-of-ethiopia

 

Opinion: The Ethiopian Financial Market is plummeting…

The Ethiopian People’s Republic Defense Force (EPRDF) Prime Minister Hailemariam Desalegn have ordered to fix economic problem the government has. EPRDF has been hailed for their financial growth, but with this sort of news. You know the growth and the reality is far from the truth. Ethiopia News Agency: “International Consultant of Trade, Investment and Economic Development, Dr. Taffere Tesfachew said on the occasion the fact that African countries are performing better than the global average is testimony to how far Africa is coming over the decade. He noted that the economic growth of countries like Ethiopia and Ivory Coast is highly impressive at this time when other African countries are struggling with one or two percent growth” (ENA, 2017).

So I have to question the economic growth, as the Forex Woes and the remittance from the diaspora are proving otherwise. Together with the need of more foreign aid to solve the famine of the drought. So the World Bank clearly knows the troubles of the Ethiopian government since they did this:

The World Bank today approved a $600 million International Development Association (IDA)* grant to support the Government of Ethiopia’s vision of building a national safety net system to provide effective support in chronically food insecure rural areas, including providing cover during droughts. The Rural Productive Safety Net Project (RPSNP) supports the evolution of the Government’s umbrella Productive Safety Net Program (PSNP) that has been in operation for the last 12 years and is one of the world’s largest safety net programs in the world. Run by the Government, the PSNP pools money from 11 donors, including $600 million of World Bank Group IDA funds. The PSNP provides regular cash or food transfers to 8 million people; currently 4 million of them are in areas affected by the ongoing drought. Its food-for-work component supports public works programs related to landscape restoration, irrigation, and agro-forestry” (World Bank, 2017).

So, when the World Bank gives this as a support of the government. You should take it serious and know the problems of the state. The need of financial support and to make sure drought doesn’t affect the starving citizens. EPRDF are doing badly and now the Forex Companies has to pay of the National Bank of Ethiopia (NBE) for the debt to Enterprise in Djibouti. Look!

Foreign Forex Woes:

The directive of foreign currency allocation entails all banks must sell foreign currency to a sector whose importance is very high. The banks are required to give priority to payments authorized by the central bank such as foreign loan, supplier’s credits, interest, profit, dividend and excess sales of foreign airlines. Hence, all banks are required to sell the currency collected from importers, although the current direction is high, according to a banker with almost two decades of experience. “Even though I agree with the fact that we shared the responsibilities with CBE,” said one of the vice president of a mid-sized bank. “But requesting such amount of Forex in a short time might lead to crisis.” Yohannes Ayalew (PhD), vice governor and chief economist of the central bank, disagrees. “It is a collective responsibility of all banks whether the call was quick or not,” said Yohannes. “There is no reason to ask CBE to cover all the payments.” The Forex shortage in the country has been haunting the country for years. Prime Minister Hailemariam Desalegn, in his press conference with local media nine months ago, admitted that the Forex crunch would last for the coming two decades” (Addis Fortune, 2017).

NBE Directive to pay of debt to Djibouti:

National Bank of Ethiopia (NBE) gave order to private banks in Ethiopia to pay the 15 million USD bill the Ethiopian Shipping Logistics Services Enterprise (ESLSE) to Djibouti’s company. The banks are, according to Fortune, given 3 days to sell the foreign currency to the Enterprise. The order is said to have come when the entire country is in short of foreign exchange. The shortage came following the drop in the country’s export performance and remittance earnings. ESLSE owes the money to the port of Djibouti and the central bank gave the order for every bank including the government owned Commercial Bank of Ethiopia (CBE)” (Addis Fortune, 2017).

Beset by the ever expanding informal channels of remittance, Ethiopia may continue to grapple with shortage of hard currency unless swift and collective measures are put in place, ‘Scaling up Formal Remittance to Ethiopia’ report discloses. A billion dollar transaction takes place via informal channels with 78 percent of the total remittance passing through informal networks in Ethiopia. Some experts believe that the transfer of money through unregulated channels will also likely result in illicit financial flow and dealings. The seizure of 541,659 USD around Harar is a recent indication of informal corridors of hard currency. Informal channels happen to be lophooles for global terrorism and corruption. It will open doors for illegal activities, people may use it to collect huge sums of money for their own dangerous causes, says Ethiopian Financial Security Director General Gemecu Weyema” (Gebrehiwot, 2017).

All of these articles proves the problems of the National Bank of Ethiopia (NBE) and their lacking foreign exchange. This has become a problem as the remittance hasn’t come through the formal channels, as the informal economy are big in Ethiopia. Together with drop of foreign exports that has also hurt the amount of exchange.

Clearly, the government of Ethiopia has a bigger problem that they want to reveal, as the NBE and the Foreign Exchange is plummeting. Therefore, the need at the same time for World Banks loans. Shows the dire situation of the economy. It is not like the Ethiopian News Agency would speak ill of own government and their policies. Since, the propaganda of own growth are more important, than actually telling about the weakness of the economy. This is a reality since the financial policy of Forex Exchange is in favor of the NBE.

This can also make it more profitable to for an informal market, instead of in the open market. The Ethiopian government really needs foreign exchange to pay of debt and use all their means. Instead, they are trying to cover-up their troubles, as they have debt to Enterprise in Djibouti and have troubles with the famine caused by drought. Peace.

Reference:

Addis Fortune – ‘Ethiopian Government Orders Private Banks to Cover ESLSE Forex Needs’ (12.09.2017) link: https://www.ezega.com/News/NewsDetails/4679/Ethiopian-Government-Orders-Private-Banks-to-Cover-ESLSE-Forex-Needs

Addis Fortune – ‘Ethiopia: NBE Ordered Banks to Cover ESLSE’s 15 Million USD Bill’ (13.09.2017) link: http://www.2merkato.com/news/alerts/5220-ethiopia-nbe-ordered-banks-to-cover-eslses-15-million-usd-bill

Ethiopia News Agency – ‘Gov’ts Need to Act Together to Achieve Economic Success: UNCTAD 2017 Report’ (14.09.2017) link: http://www.ena.gov.et/en/index.php/economy/item/3705-gov-ts-need-to-act-together-to-achieve-economic-success-unctad-2017-report

Gebrehiwot, Desta – ‘Ethiopia: Informal Channels Raise Red Flag On Forex Earning’ (14.09.2017) link: http://allafrica.com/stories/201709140729.html

World Bank – ‘World Bank to Help Ethiopia Build a National Safety Net System as a More Effective Response to Droughts’ (14.09.2017) link: http://www.worldbank.org/en/news/press-release/2017/09/14/world-bank-to-help-ethiopia-build-a-national-safety-net-system-as-a-more-effective-response-to-droughts