Mager Media News Update – Wednesday, August 10, 2022 (Nehase 4, 2014 EC)
Today’s news updates are as follows:
- Residents block roads in protest of Amhara travelers being selectively prevented from entering Addis Ababa and
- Decision to incorporate Woredas from Addis Ababa city to the Oromo Regional Administration.
Protesters are blocking roads after Amhara people selectively prevented from entering Addis Ababa city.
Since the morning of August 10, 2022 (Nehase 4, 2014 EC), the road leading from Chacha town (located near Debre Birhan) to Addis Ababa has been completely blocked so that transportation trucks cannot pass.
The primary reason for the road being blocked is to protest Oromo Special Forces (OSF) selectively preventing and abusing Amhara people traveling from North and South Wollo Zones (Amhara Region) to pass to Addis Ababa, especially when travelers reach the areas of Shino, Elelitu, Sendafa and Legedadi towns.
The mentioned towns/cities of Oromo Region have been sites of targeting, harassment and prevention from traveling to Addis Ababa, which the government failed to provide a timely response to despite repeated calls for a solution, according to Shewa Fano and the local community.
The Shewa Fano issued a statement regarding the issue stating the roads would not be opened unless detained Fano leaders were released and the Addis Ababa line is opened.
The statement from Shewa Fano called for arrested Fano leaders to be released without any preconditions and to be allowed to return to their residences without any further harassment. The statement denounced the federal government for complicity in preventing Amhara people from traveling to Addis Ababa and causing suffering to the people, demanded this stops immediately and to issue an apology for all the pain and suffering already caused. It also outlines that unless these demands are met, the protest and civil disobedience will continue vigorously.
Over the past week, many of the Amhara travelers who were prevented from going to Addis Ababa became stranded in Chacha town and are suffering, according to sources.
In relation, many transit operators based in various areas of North Shewa Zone including Debre Birhan have been fined 3,000 to 5,000 ETB in towns in Oromo Region despite having necessary permits, and face beatings from OSF.
According to sources, Mager Media has confirmed that there is a strike ongoing such that any and all transit vehicles operating in Debre Birhan and Shewa Robit which travel to Addis Ababa.
Over the past 2 weeks, there have been repeated complaints from Amhara people traveling from various areas of North Wollo and South Wollo Zones of Amhara Region to Addis Ababa city, including of undue criminalization of travelers taking transportation vehicles and reaching Sendafa town. And today (August 10, 2022), public transportation services stopped being provided from Debre Birhan, Chacha and Shewa Robit towns towards Addis Ababa city.
Mager Media previously reported on the issue of Amhara people traveling from North and South Wollo areas (Amhara Region) being selectively stopped by OSF as they pass Debre Birhan side towards Addis Ababa.
The Ethiopian Human Rights Commission (EHRC) recently expressed that it would investigation allegations of human rights abuse including selectively preventing Amhara people (by identification) traveling from Debre Birhan, Amhara Region from reaching Addis Ababa.
Many Woredas from Addis Ababa city are going to be incorporated into the Oromo Regional Administration
The process to redraw the boundaries of the Oromo Region are underway with several Woredas of Addis Ababa slated to be incorporated.
Mager Media has confirmed from its sources that prior to this there were new efforts to redefine the boundary between Addis Ababa and the Oromo Regional Administration and that large portions of Addis Ababa were to be given to the Oromo Regional Administration.
The boundary demarcation is set to incorporate Woredas in the Addis Ababa Zuriya area under special zones of the Oromo Regional Administration and these areas are now known.
Mager Media has learned from insider sources that the ruling party’s member organizations, subcity and woreda administrators have been made aware of this plan. According to the new regional demarcation, the following areas will be subject to administrative change: Kolfe, Nifas Silk and Akaki Kaliti sub-cities and Legetafo, Yeka Abado, Koye Feche, Bole Bulbula, Jomo Condominium 2 up to Weybela Maryam and in North Addis Ababa (Entoto) from Kela to Woreda 01, 06 and 07,
Woreda and sub-city officials were told to hold discussions with residents affected by the change and were given specific points of discussion, according to Mager Media’s sources.
The two administrations will be newly demarcated using natural and manmade demarcations according to studies and discussions between administrations in various woredas and sub-cities of Addis Ababa and surrounding areas of the Oromo Region. Last Saturday, a meeting was held to discuss this matter with administrative officials from Addis Ababa – Akaki Kaliti sub-city, Nifas Silk Lafto sub-city and other city officials, and Oromo Region – Gelan sub-city. According to the study provided, part of Akaki Kaliti sub-city Woreda 13 would be partially placed under the Oromo Region. This would mean the Tuludimtu Condominiums including 11 large private residences would be placed under the Oromo Region. Wazema Radio also reported that the Woreda 13 administration is prepared to give up these areas according to woreda officials.
It was decided for the new areas in and around the private homes located in Koye Feche, Woreda 9, Akaki Kaliti sub-city to be incorporated into the Oromo Region.
Similarly, it was decided for the area near to Woreda 10 and 11 up to Goro Medaresha (to the right of the road) near Koye Feche private homes in Akaki Kaliti sub-city to be incorporated into the Oromo Regional Administration.
It has been learned that the Aba Samuel Correctional Facility area (located in Woreda 04, Akaki Kaliti sub-city) has been proposed to be incorporated as part of this change.
It remains unclear whether the group led by Minister of Jobs and Skills Muferayat Kamil to study this issue will be involved in this process. It is also unclear whether the Addis Ababa city council has a clear stance on this issue given that representatives from areas affected by the administrative change were elected during the sixth national elections.