Abiy is Ethiopia’s Underappreciated Hero

August 5, 2021 

Abiy Ahmed’s election in 2018 as Ethiopia’s prime minister came after his predecessor, Hailemariam Desalegn, was forced to resign as Ethiopians opposing repressive practices that had lasted 30 years, including violent state repression, protested in large numbers. Abiy’s ascendancy brought to an end the lengthy reign of The Tigrayan People’s Liberation Front (TPLF). 

In his initial days in power, Abiy freed tens of thousands of political prisoners, lifted Internet restrictions and restored diplomatic ties with Eritrea, culminating in the end of a long-running border war. These reforms contributed to his winning the Nobel Peace Prize in 2019, impressing friend and foe alike. But no good deed goes unpunished, and a movement soon emerged to deconstruct his reforms with the ultimate aim of removing him from office. 

Abiy’s most immediate frustration was a bankrupt government, a state of affairs that had been achieved by design. Before handing over power, the TPLF emptied the state coffers, taking $30 billion and a substantial amount of gold, effectively bankrupting the country. According to a highly placed source within the Ethiopian Government, TPLF stashed the funds in Djibouti before moving it to personal accounts and lobbying firms in Washington and Nairobi. This money is currently supporting a sophisticated misinformation campaign that involves compromising prominent journalists in the region and distributing fake news on social media against Abiy and his government. For long, the world bought into this disinformation campaign that successfully cast Abi as the villain and TPLF as the victim. 

The problem of empty state coffers was very frustrating; it rendered the Ethiopian government unable to run or deliver services effectively. It was a tremendous triumph for the TPLF and its agents: it was choking the new administration away from international scrutiny. Subsequently, the TPLF began to blame Abiy for the country’s economic crisis in hopes of sparking a revolt. To its dismay, the UAE came to the government’s aid, pouring $3 billion into the Ethiopian government and providing a lifeline to Abiy.

As Ethiopia inched closer to democracy, and TPLF and its surrogates seeing their hold on power slipping, sought the assistance of the European Union’s in an attempt to install a militia to take over from the legitimate government. The EU, which worried about a refugee influx into Europe in the event a civil war broke out in Ethiopia and that it could prevail on a militia friendly to its interests to barricade borders and prevent refugees from crossing to Europe, agreed to this collaboration. 

As part of that plan, former Somali region president Abdi Mohamoud Omar, was primed to make a declaration that Ethiopia’s Somali region had seceded to encourage other region states to follow suit. The intention was to keep Abiy distracted with regional wrangles and lose sight of his reformist and developmental agenda. 

To cause further confusion, TPLF fanned tremendous inter-ethnic conflict. It used militia loyal to its cause to conduct war in border towns shared by different ethnic groupings, reducing once promising urban centres to rubble. While Abiy’s government dealt with TPLF’s chaos internally, TPLF was winning the propaganda war on the world stage, which only emboldened them to continue their destructive activities.

During his tenure as the president of Ethiopia’s Somali regional state, Omar was once quoted saying that Getachew Assefa, a prominent member of the Ethiopian People’s Liberation Front, was responsible for ordering assassinations in the Somali state region in order to cause instability and clashes with neighbouring ethinic groups. And even though Omar was later arrested, the same technique is still being used by the TPLF, the latest being deadly clashes between the Somali and Afar.

For years, the international community has tended to ignore all of the TPLF’s crimes while imposing unjustified pressure on Abiy; this means the IC is effectively giving the TPLF a free pass. But allowing TPLF to regain control is not a solution. And even if they were to remove a legitimately installed government, the TPLF has created too many adversaries with practically every region in the country, and would face enormous opposition in its quest to reclaim power. The attendant chaos would create instability and human displacement in Africa’s second most populous country. The prospect of such a scenario is frightening, since it would be one of the greatest refugee crises in modern history, with regional and international ramifications.

When the government and TPLF reached a ceasefire at the end of June, Abiy ordered the ENDF to leave Mekelle, Tigray’s main city. And even though the TPLF commanders went home, they dismissed the deal as a joke and promised to keep fighting. In particular, Getachew Reda, an advisor to the deputy and acting President of the Tigray Region, Debretsion Gebremichael, and he also is an executive committee member of the TPLF declared the war will continue “until no Kalashnikov remains.” In short, TPLF does not share Abiy’s goal for a peaceful coexistence; to understand this, consider an occurrence that occurred at the end of last month. 

The author is the Executive Director of the Institute of Horn of Africa Strategic Studies, and an analyst at Southlink Consultants 

No comments

Thank you for reaching out to us. We are happy to receive your opinion and request. If you need advert or sponsored post, We’re excited you’re considering advertising or sponsoring a post on our blog. Your support is what keeps us going. With the current trend, it’s very obvious content marketing is the way to go. Banner advertising and trying to get customers through Google Adwords may get you customers but it has been proven beyond doubt that Content Marketing has more lasting benefits.
We offer majorly two types of advertising:
1. Sponsored Posts: If you are really interested in publishing a sponsored post or a press release, video content, advertorial or any other kind of sponsored post, then you are at the right place.
Generally, a sponsored post can be any of the following:
Press release
Video content
This kind of post is usually written to promote you or your business. However, we do prefer posts that naturally flow with the site’s general content. This means we can also promote artists, songs, cosmetic products and things that you love of all products or services.
Every sponsored article will remain live on the site as long as this website exists. The duration is indefinite! Again, we will share your post on our social media channels and our email subscribers too will get to read your article. You’re exposing your article to our: Twitter followers, Facebook fans and other social networks.

We will also try as much as possible to optimize your post for search engines as well.

Submission of Materials : Sponsored post should be well written in English language and all materials must be delivered via electronic medium. All sponsored posts must be delivered via electronic version, either on disk or e-mail on Microsoft Word unless otherwise noted.
The price largely depends on if you’re writing the content or we’re to do that. But if your are writing the content, it is $60 per article.

2. Banner Advertising: We also offer banner advertising in various sizes and of course, our prices are flexible. you may choose to for the weekly rate or simply buy your desired number of impressions.

Technical Details And Pricing
Banner Size 300 X 250 pixels : Appears on the home page and below all pages on the site.
Banner Size 728 X 90 pixels: Appears on the top right Corner of the homepage and all pages on the site.
Large rectangle Banner Size (336x280) : Appears on the home page and below all pages on the site.
Small square (200x200) : Appears on the right side of the home page and all pages on the site.
Half page (300x600) : Appears on the right side of the home page and all pages on the site.
Portrait (300x1050) : Appears on the right side of the home page and all pages on the site.
Billboard (970x250) : Appears on the home page.

Submission of Materials : Banner ads can be in jpeg, jpg and gif format. All materials must be deliverd via electronic medium. All ads must be delivered via electronic version, either on disk or e-mail in the ordered pixel dimensions unless otherwise noted.
For advertising offers, send an email with your name,company, website, country and advert or sponsored post you want to appear on our website to omodjk(at)gmail(dot)com

Normally, we should respond within 48 hours.