Addis Ababa April 11/2018 Ethiopia and Brazil have signed investment cooperation and facilitation agreement following the first Ethio-Brazil bilateral consultation meeting today.
Foreign Affairs State Minister Hirut Zemen co-signed the agreement with her Brazilian counterpart Ambassador Fernando Jose Marroni De Abreu.
State Minister Hirut said on the occasion the two countries share many similar things in common including south-south cooperation.
The countries have inked about 10 agreements and MoU to further boost bilateral cooperation on various areas.
She added that "we are hopeful that the discussion held today in terms of expanding investment, trade and cooperation in the agricultural sector will come to fruition."
According to Ambassador Marroni De Abreu, Brazil and Ethiopia have a long-standing cooperation in economic, cultural and social sectors that they can further consolidate.
He added that the Brazilian delegation had a very fruitful discussion about various issues, projects being implemented mainly in agriculture, forestry and acidity of soil, as well as regional and global challenges.
The Ambassador appreciated Ethiopia’s effort in peacekeeping and the negotiations with Egypt and Sudan.
Diplomatic relations between Ethiopia and Brazil date back to the 1950s.
Addis Ababa April 11/2018 The passing of HR 128 is untimely and inappropriate since it has failed to recognize the changing reality on the ground and not taken into account the excellent long-standing bilateral cooperation of the two countries, Government Communication Affairs Minister Negeri Lencho said.
In a telephonic interview he gave to ENA on the passing of HR 128 by the US House of Representatives, the Minister said the resolution has not considered what the government of Ethiopia is carrying out in various spheres.
According to Negeri, the ruling party has recently been working aggressively to address the grievances of the public by setting reforms related to human rights and political space.
“We as a government give priority to addressing the grievances of the public as we are accountable to the people,” he said, adding that the passing of HR 128 at this level is insignificant in the light of this.
Mentioning a number of reforms, including dropping charges and releasing thousands of prisoners, the Minister noted that many resolutions passed by EPRDF Executive Committee are under implementation.
Negeri emphatically stated that it would have been better to support the government’s ongoing reforms in addressing various issues of the country instead of passing such a “destructive resolution”.
Moreover, he said US government organs, including members from the senate, oppose the resolution as it is not helpful to effectively and expeditiously implement the reform on the ground.
Meanwhile, Ministry of Foreign Affairs has called the resolution “untimely and inappropriate.”
In a statement it issued today, it stated that at this crucial juncture when the government is working to implement bold reforms this resolution tries to undermine the new political dynamism and fails to recognize the call by the Prime Minister to create inclusive political platform.
While Ethiopia values its bilateral relations with the United States and works to promote regional peace and security in the Horn of Africa, the resolution undermines its sovereignty, the statement added.
The ministry stressed that the government of Ethiopia has been open to dialogue with all pertinent US. government bodies that have the view of constructive engagement.
However, it vehemently opposes HR 128 and believes that the U.S Congress should focus on the implications and move forward to work with Ethiopia in its effort to finding sustainable solutions that properly address the situation on the ground and strengthen bilateral relationships.
According to the ministry, Ethiopia has demonstrated its commitment to democracy by working closely with partners to advance human rights as provided in the Constitution; and it remains committed to its citizens in promoting accountability, justice, freedom, and the rule of law.
Ambo April 11/2018 Addressing a public gathering in the town of Ambo, Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed said that in a country like Ethiopia, unity remains the hallmark and the main option for inclusive development.
Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed and a team of government officials on working visit at Ambo town including Deputy Prime Minister Demeke Mekonnen, Sheferaw Shegute, Head of the Office of the Secetariate of EPRDF, Lemma Megeressa, President of Oromia Regional State, and Foreign Minister Workneh Gebeyehu presided over a huge public gathering held at Ambo Stadium in Ambo town.
The Premier had his first work visit to the Somali Regional State on April 8, 2018 whereby he called for immediate resolution to come for the recent conflict in the border areas of Oromia and Somali regional states.
Today Premier Abiy made his second leg official working visit to Oromia Regional State of Ambo town, where the town was one of the most restive areas in the past two years.
Addressing a mammoth gathering drawn from Ambo town and its environs, Premier Abiy stressed on the need for unity for development. Strengthening unity in the economic, social and development as well as on other sectors is the call of the day for the nation, the Prime Minister said.
Stressing on the need for unity, the Premier said “if we develop the culture of listening to each other, we can achieve our major goals for our growth development.”
He added "I urge you all to promote our unity in diversity by supporting each other, so that we can realize our strategic dream."
The Prime Minister also said that the government is preparing several mechanisms as a means of responding to the demands and needs of the youth through identifying the major challenges facing the youth.
He added that the government is striving to improve the educational system of the country, as education is the main tool to get rid of illiteracy and poverty.
Also speaking on the occasion, Deputy Prime Minister Demeke Mekonnen said Ethiopia will achieve its goals of becoming a mid level developed country by 2025 through working in unison for the lofty goal achievements.
“Even though the country has achieved a lot over the previous several decades, still remains to be desired in filling the gaps in our development endeavors,” Demeke said.
Demeke noted that the government is already aware of the limitations in various sectors and striving to address the challenges by drawing lessons from the preceding shortfalls.
Lema Megerssa, President of Oromia Regional State who also delivered a speech on the occasion said that both the federal and regional governments of the country will work without ceasing in effectively responding to the demands of the public.
The main agenda of the federal government in general and that of Oromia in particular is to uphold a democratic culture and tradition in the country, he added.
In April 2014, protests began in the town of Ambo and other areas of Oromia, after the government announced its readiness to implement the master plan in bid to develop the capital Addis Ababa and the surrounding area of Oromia Special Zone in an integrated way.
Addis Ababa April 11/2018 The Federal Attorney General revealed that charges on some 114 prisoners including monks from the Waldiba monastery, who were allegedly arrested of terrorism and other crimes, were dropped today.
The detainees whom their charges are dropped had been accused of terrorism and other crimes.
Executive Committees of the ruling party, Ethiopian Peoples’ Revolutionary Democratic Front (EPRDF) after an extended meeting had passed a number of decisions including dropping charges and releasing prisoners to widen the political space.
It is to be recalled that government has released and dropped charges of many prisoners at federal and regional level in line to the requirements set by the Federal Attorney General.
Addis Ababa April 11/2018 On his second leg of an official visit to various parts of the country, Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed started an official working visit to Ambo town today.
In his upcoming address to the public gathering drawn from Ambo town and representatives from some 22 woredas, who converged in Ambo Stadium starting from 10:00 a.m, the Premier is expected to take up various local, regional and national political, social and development issues related to current situation in the country.
Ambo is a town some 120 km west of the capital Addis Ababa, was not long ago that hit by protest against the Addis Ababa and Surrounding Oromia Special Zone Integrated Master Plan.
In mid April 2014, the government announced its readiness to implement the master plan in bid to develop the capital Addis Ababa and the vicinity of Oromia Special Zone in an integrated manner.
However, this move provoked an immediate reaction from some university students across the Oromia region, and Ambo was one of the towns that resisted the implementation of the master plan.
The town remained the heartbeat of spreading protests that started in late 2015 through to the reform of the ruling EPRDF party and the appointment of the new Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed.
But now residents of Ambo town expressed their joy in the visit of the Prime Minister with the expectation that such a visit would be instrumental in finding viable solutions to public demands in various areas of socio-economic development of the town and the country at large.
Geremew Belay, a young resident of Ambo Town said:
“Upon hearing that the Prime Minister will make a working visit to our town, we were excited to welcome him and other government representatives and we are preparing a list of socio-economic challenges that the town has so far faced and we are optimistic that his visit will play a major role in solving a number of development problems the town is facing.”
Aster Nemera, a women residing in Ambo town said “The visit of Prime Minister Abiy Amed to our town would usher a new hope and opportunity for the improvement of the livelihood of women in the town. We are also expecting the development of manufacturing industries in the town. She also said that Ambo Town Administration is expected to effectively respond to the development needs of the women in the town.”
Mekonnen Bedada, another resident of Ambo town said the town administration needs to work in collaboration with the government to resolve public grievances in the areas of infrastructural developments like roads, potable water and electricity.
He added that the visit of the Prime Minister will help to speed up the positive responses to the development needs of the town.
In his visit to Ambo today, the Premier is expected to also confer with the representatives of the public, elders and youth groups.
Addis Ababa April 10/2018 The US government has expressed its commitment to pursue partnership with African nations in the fight against stopping the spread of fall armyworm.
In her telephonic press briefing about efforts to combat fall armyworm in Africa to day, USAID Fall Armyworm Task Force Coordinator Regina Eddy said the worm has been identified in over 35 countries of Africa.
She revealed that the US has a decade of experience in controlling fall armyworm so the challenge is transferring that knowledge to African counterparts and opening the path to thousands of technology.
The worm has damaged about 3 million hectares of maize crop since it occurred in Africa two years ago. Additionally, agriculture experts estimate the pest has caused over 13 billion USD in losses for crops across African countries.
To combat the pest in Ethiopia, the US government has been working with government and the private sector on making recommendations on the measures to be taken based on experience, Eddy said.
A total of 210 experts and development agents were reportedly trained early this year so that they can cascade the knowledge and skills to communities, it was learned.
The fall army worm has spread in more than 5 regions of Ethiopia.