Key Points from the Prime Minister’s Speech at the Parliament

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Ethiopian prime minister Abiy Ahmed appeared today at the House of People’s Representatives parliament to answer questions of the members on different topics.

 

About Election 2020

 

The prime minister was asked about the safety and fairness of the upcoming election because insecurities in the country and disagreement between leading and opposition parties on the new law of election might affect the integrity of election 2020.

 

“A flawless election is impossible,” said the prime minister, he added “democracy needs an exercise. Postponing the election with silly reasons causes more trouble, it’s better to have the people’s will and work wholeheartedly.”

 

Furthermore, He said that currently, the Electoral Board is in a better position than before. “The budget allocated for the board, and well-recognized members approved by the parliament, will put the current electoral board well equipped in finance and strength.”

 

PM Abiy also mentioned the criteria for better election; he said, “if the mass media and civil society play its role, and the political parties work to convince the people and if they get their votes to take power and if they fail to accept the result will help to make the better election.”

 

“Ethiopians took a good lesson from the election 2005 about the costs of violence after elections. There are challenges and difficulties, but still, the government and the people work in cooperation to tackle the problems,” The PM said

 

About Unifying Ethiopian People’s Revolutionary Democratic Front (EPRDF)

 

Recently the prime minister was talking about unifying EPRDF, a collation of four parties of four regions into one national party. The idea caused controversy, especially from TPLF, one of the leading members of EPRDF.

 

It’s wrong to believe that there is no country or government without EPRDF. It’s just a 40 years old party. Peace can be achieved with our agreement. Of course, Ethiopia exists if we exist; Ethiopia will carry on with or without EPRDF.

 

For the past ten years, there were discussions about the unity of EPRDF. In the Hawassa assembly of the party, the decision made to finalize the unifying process before the next meeting.

 

I never heard an idea opposing the unification of EPRDF, but some individuals and parties doubt the timing of unification. We will decide on that after considering the output of the study being made.

 

About the dispute between Amhara and Tigray regions

 

Regional governments of Amhara and Tigray have been in dispute for a couple of months, and one blames the other for violence happens in its territory. The prime minister asked about this issue, and he answered :

 

The youth should say no to those who try to solve every problem with violence; The leading causes for this violence are old parties and individuals; they should retire.

 

It’s impossible to separate people of Amhara and Tigray, the result of the current dispute is regret, just as we regretted our fight against Eritrea.

About the Nile Dam

The premier said negotiations should be the only solution to solve the disagreement between Ethiopia and Egypt on the dam being built on the river Nile.

 

If there is a need to go to war, Ethiopia could prepare millions of youth for it. But we believe that negotiation is the only solution.  

 

I will discuss it with Egyptian President Al-Sisi soon. I can assure you that there is no way we are going to stop the construction of the dam.

 

About his Nobel Peace Prize

 

Some individuals say that I don’t deserve the prize, but it’s already given to Abiy, and it won’t be taken away from him. The next focus should be motivating the youth to win more prizes, instead of wasting time debating on dead issues.