Hosts Kenya scored two first-half goals to beat 10-man Rwanda to launch their Cecafa Challenge Cup campaign on Sunday. The Kenyans could have won by an even bigger margin at the newly refurbished Bukhungu Stadium in Kakamega, in Western Kenya.
The Ethiopian national side are in Group B along with Uganda, South Sudan, Burundi and Zimbabwe.
The national side will have their match against Burundi on December 4. The host nation Kenya, Libya, Tanzania and Rwanda are in Group A.
The German national Matthias Frosch, 30, was in Ethiopia until last week to give football training courses for refugees in three centres: Tigray, Gambella and Assosa. He was sent to Ethiopia by the German Olympique Sports Federation, DOSB. This was long term cooperation program between the Ethiopian Football Federation and the German Olympique Sports Federation. Matthias Frosch studied sports specializing football and sports medicine in addition to coaching licence from the German federation.
Matthias Frosch has sat down The Ethiopian Herald Sports writer Solomon Bekele to discuss about his mission in Ethiopia. Below are excerpts:
Herald Sports: let us start with your mission.
Matthias Frosch: The German Olympique Sports Federation has good relationship with the EFF long before I came here. We know that there are lots of refugees in Ethiopia. Ethiopia as a host nation received thousands of refugees from neighbouring countries such as South Sudan, Somalia and Eritrea. There are refugees even from Rwanda and Mali. These refugees stay in different centres in the country. They are there until they get another host nation for permanent settlement. For refugees staying in a camp for long is monotonous and frustrating. So the DOSB drew a project to engage them in sports activities.
HS: How did you carry out your mission?
Matthias Frosch: The first two courses were given in Assosa and Gambella. The other course in 7 days was given in Shire, Tigray region. The refugee camps are out of Shire town so that we drive one or one and half hours to reach the camps.
HS: Where is the camp for Somalia refugees?
Matthias Frosch: I was not engaged in the Eastern part of the country in this trip. For Somalia refugees the course will be given in mid December.
HS: Did you get a good number of participants?
Matthias Frosch: O! Ya. These are young people who want to enjoy playing football. The course is not strictly focus on theoretical issues. We give them time for entertainment.
HS: How was their reception?
Matthias Frosch: Well, at the initial stage they were critical. When they realize that we speak the same language we develop good relation and they enthusiastically follow what we teach them. Don’t forget that this is not a normal course. It is a special one.
HS: when you say special course
Matthias Frosch: You know we take the camp as one wide community. We teach them how to establish the league system and run competition within that camp for some time. They become very active for long.
HS: What is the reaction of the community in the area?
Matthias Frosch: At the initial stage they are distrustful but after some time they enjoy it. We also organize similar courses for the community. Not only that, we also provide playing materials like ball both to the community and the refugees.
Do you think you are fruitful by what you did?
Matthias Frosch: Yes. The primary purpose of this course is to communicate the community with the refugees. In other words through football we managed to connect the refugees with the Ethiopian community. This creates people to people relation. One is not becoming hostile to the other.
HS: Were you a player during your young age?
Matthias Frosch: I played football as midfielder but not in the German Bundesliga.
HS: Did you watch the Ethiopian top flight match while you were in Addis?
Matthias Frosch: Yes I watched when Coffee played. The fans are quite good. The spirit is very encouraging but you need to work hard to reach the world standard.
HS: Is this your first time to come to Ethiopia? If so what is your reaction?
Matthias Frosch: Yes this was my first trip to Ethiopia. When I came here first I saw the cultural difference between Ethiopians and Germans. For Ethiopians it is easy to interact with other people. You invite people to take coffee or tea even if you don’t know him. You simply chat with any one but in Germany we don’t have this kind of openness.
HS: If you have anything to add
Matthias Frosch: Teaching refugees is a good investment on people. I like to thank the Ethiopian government for receiving many refugees. This is an act of helping human beings. What we did in Germany is the same. My trip to Ethiopia, I think, will help keep the good relation between the two countries.
Violence broke out at the Addis Ababa stadium during the city cup final between Saint George and Coffee.
As the season’s Ethiopian Premier League matches are in progress this time the ugly spectacle of the fan violence is on the rise.
On Sunday Wolwalo University beat Coffee by a slender 1-0 margin to take the early league leadership on 9 points. The losers Coffee went two ladders down to take the third place on 7 points.
The host Adama City collected the full three points with a 1-0 win over the visiting side Hawassa City to take the second place on 8 points. The two times champions Hawassa City are way down in the table.
Arbaminch City also beat the visitors Mekelakeya two to nothing.
Wolayita Dicha dropped two points as a result of 1-1 tie with the visiting side Dire Dawa City while The Woldiya City and Mekele City match which was intended to be played in Woldiya was interrupted due to fan violence flared up hours before the start of the game.
This was little expected prior to the violent confrontation among the fans of two sides. It was reported that the violence began four hours before the start of the game.
Mekele City joined the elite league this season. So that in less than two months in action there is no reason for the fans of the two teams to go to this kind of fist fighting that eventually led to cancellation of the game.
The game’s organizing body, the Ethiopian Football Federation, EFF, said that it is waiting for the offial repot by the referee and match official before it imposes heavy penalty.
The report of the clash is indeed surprising. The game is at its earlier stage. What will happen if the matches reach critical stage? As it is known the re will be time for teams to be put in a do or die situation. This time the EPL is in its fifth week, 25 games to go before the closure of the season.
To many in Ethiopia the scene during the derby match between Saint George and Coffee has always been tense. This is understandable because of the rivalry between the two teams is a public knowledge.
The puzzle, as Woldiya and Mekele Cities scheduled to clash for the first time, was why this happened at this early stage.
It is difficult to put the burden of responsibility on this or that side. Both are fresh for the elite league. Woldiya joined the league a year earlier while Mekele City stayed in the league only for a brief two months. One cannot say that their fans are organized and came for the fight in so short a time.
Eyewitness from Woldiya City said that the Woldiya City fans had brutal skirmishes with rival fans. No details were given.
Trouble seems to follow as other teams’ supporters are inspired to do the same in their home venues.
The EFF strongly warned that all sides taking part in the competition not to involve in any kind of violence in or outside of the stadium in a gathering of all stakeholders just days before the start of the seasons competition.
The EFF by then said the punishment for violence will include suspension and point reduction besides financial punishment.
This was not the first time this season violence to break out during the league matches. Jima Abajifar’s arena is banned for two matches as a result of fan disturbance during their first day match against Hawassa City. The EFF looks determined to impose harsh penalty to control the looming football hooliganism in its bud but the danger of its rising trend is visible.
Mostly in advanced countries the role and contribution of women in leadership and decision making is sensible. We are witnessing that more women than ever are successfully running for office. It is worldwide experience that the number of women is not equal to men in almost every aspect of life. With no doubt, the progress made to improve women participation and their benefit from their respective countries’ socioeconomic outcomes has notably been recognized. In the 2030 Agenda, the world leaders agreed that progress must be accelerated. The vision of the global goals depends on women’s full participation and leadership in all arenas of life. The UN Women is promoting and pushing forward for viable laws and policies that boost the number of women leaders. More fairer and inclusive world without women is unthinkable. Countries need to take concrete measures for women to play their due role in attaining many developmental programs and interventions especially to the Sustainable Development Goals on gender equality, inclusion and accountable institutions.
No exception to Ethiopia. Comparing to the legal provisions and enabling environment the role and participation of women in leadership and decision making is insignificant. The progress in bringing women in leadership is still with blurred gender lens that needs quick adjustment to transform the country in all aspect, women leaders argue.
As to Women Development and Change Strategy, the very reason for the limited representation of women in leadership and decision making the low level of understanding among the public and the women themselves. It highlighted the facilitation of enabling environment for women to enhance their leadership and decision making participation at all levels of the legislative, Judiciary and executive. It also underlined that all the necessary support would be given to women representatives at various levels of councils. The strategy has also indicated that the participation of women in education and training opportunities should be step up at all levels so that their number in leadership and decision making would increase.
The share women have in the legislative bodies is remarkably encouraging. The number of women in the federal parliament has reached close to 40 percent which is exemplary for many countries. In state councils the number of women has been increasing. This progress attests that public trust on women has been increasing.
There are 18 standing committees in the House of Peoples Representatives. Six of them are chaired by women while eight women are serving as deputy chairperson, according to information obtained from the House.
At the executive organs there are three women ministers, over 15 state ministers and there are several women in public structure at minister and state minister portfolio. The number of women ambassadors has shown increase though they are still few.
For Ambassador Dr. Genet Zewdie Founder and Executive Director of Women Strategic Development Center, there are enabling provisions to bring women into leadership mentioning the overwhelming offers of the constitution. The women policy is first policy to be endorsed in the country.
For unfair reasons, though women vividly displayed contribution in all spheres of lives, their representation in leadership and decision making is very much low. She singled out the major reason for the failure for the deep rooted patriarchal sentiment in the country.
Of course, the situation for women has been improved when comparing to where we were before 25 years back. According to her, the number and participation of women in the parliament is quite encouraging. “ Women in the House are vibrant .”
Ambassador Dr. Genet argued that women’s role and participation at all levels of the executive organ especially on the top is unjustified. As to women contribution and account from the total population they denied their right to actively engage in leadership and decision making. Sadly enough, she said the number of women ministers are less or equal in the cabinet 15 years back.
The back and forth move that is influenced by the foggy gender lens. The very reason for the low level of women participation in leadership and decision making is the unjust gender lens, according to Dr.Genet. All the development issues including the national vision becoming one of the middle income economies would be questioned without considering the half population of the country.
Appreciating the achievement gained so far, she said as women’s role and contribution over the past years their status in leadership and decision is almost insignificant that left big assignment for all actors to address the cultural, structural and institutional bottlenecks. Though it is time taking, the gender issue is not a pressing agenda for only an entity rather needs synergy. Most importantly, the role and contribution of women themselves in bringing them in leadership and decision is indispensable, she noted.
Social Policy Planning Effectiveness and Monitoring State Minister at Prime Minister Office Seida Kedir for her part said the number of women in the federal parliament and state councils has increased sharply and this is clearly the manifestation of winning the trust of the public. This is an important step in a country where gender blind sentiment reigns for years.
For Seida the current scenario of women in leadership and decision making status is a result of the struggle made over the past years. “ I believe the number of women in leadership at various levels is encouraging but it tells more to be done.” she argued.
Seida said: “ To my knowledge and understanding there is no problem with legal frameworks because the Constitution has fundamentally changed the scenario in the country. But the deep rooted ill-perception about women has been the driving force for what is still happening.”
For the sluggish pace in brining women in leadership, she insists women have to use every available opportunity for the best of their advantage. In this regard, Seida said : “ Women who have already held office should understand that their current position and authority is symbolic for many others. They have to make their presence meaningful and visible to disprove the myth. “
State Minister for Social and Labour Affairs Tadelech Dalecho for her part said the legal provisions including the Constitution, policy, development and change strategy and the gender mainstreaming in all offices are enabling instruments to bring women in leadership and decision making.
The number of women in the parliament has reached close to 40 percent. They are actively participating in chairing standing committees and over sighting public offices. Their number in state councils is also encouraging.
“ We are witnessing that strong women are coming in the parliament and state councils,” minister Tadelech states.
However, she agrees that the number of women is very much limited at all levels of the executive bodies. Tadelech argued that the number of women ministers is the same as we had 15 years back. “There is a crude generalization labeling women as incapable. This is the result of the defocused gender lens.”
For obvious reason, the issue of women needs concerted efforts of all actors. As to Tadelech, women themselves especially who are in leaders and decision makers should display their capability and mobilize resource in an organized manner to fight the patriarchal order.
The country has enabling legal and policy environment which emanate from the gender sensitive constitution. However, as to the positive outcomes towards ensuring the participation and benefits of women, the pace in bringing them in leadership and decision making is lagging. This is the happening reality. As women leaders argue women need to be given the chance.
Truly, the achievements gained so far in ensuring participation and benefits of women need to be scaled up in making them leaders and decision makers. This definitely requires concerted efforts of the government, the public, all development actors and women themselves to change the patriarchal sentiment to sustain the gender equality, to extricate the country from poverty and improve citizens’ livelihood.
The country is striving to realize the aspirations of the second GTP and the national vision becoming one of middle income countries in 2025. Therefore, the role and contribution of women in realizing these aspirations is vital. Above all, gender equality is a precondition for meeting the challenge of reducing poverty, promoting sustainable development and building good governance.
BY HAILAT BILAT
In recent field visit to Admas Farmers Cooperative Union (AFCU) at Wolkite, Gurage Zone ,the Ethiopian Herald had approached Federal Cooperative Agency Director General Osman Suru. He said that the visit was aimed at evaluating Admas Farmers Cooperative Union(AFCU) performance status and to share its experience to other agro-possessor oil factories that are on pipeline.
The crew comprises of the Ministry of Agriculture and Natural Resources, stakeholders and international organization which are engaged in supporting cooperative unions . As it has been put in the country’s policies and strategies, cooperative unions have been given due emphasis on their peerless role in realizing the rural transformation process.
AFCU has started oil refinery process with linseed . The field visit by concerned bodies’ had an important impact on the sustainability of the factory . This is because , the visiting group had assessed the factory’s performance status, success stories and expected challenges so as to contribute their parts . The visit also highlighted what must be done the way forward from each concerned bodies like from the Ministry, agency among others.
Such exemplary agro-processing oil refinery factory will be a showcase to others who are intended to build oil factory in the country. The country imports oil at a cost of 350 million USD annually . On the contrary, it has untapped raw materials which enable to produce sufficient oil. Hence, ensuring the factory’s sustainable producing capacity, means reducing the country’s expanse for oil. It can support the country’s import substitution strategy. It not only support import substitution but it also facilitates nation’s oil export opportunity too. If such similar factories are involved in agro- processing , the country can fulfill its oil consumption indeed. But, the country exports linseed, sesame and other oilseeds in a raw. “Hence, we have to use our resources at maximum efforts, ”he said.
According to Osman, the country needs modernizing its agricultural sector mode and means of production, starting from inputs supply up to marketing system. Because Industries need continuous inputs supply otherwise , they will stop and expose to depreciation.
Nongovernmental organizations who are engaged in the sector contributions will have a significant impact on building the cooperative unions capacity. They are acting based on the country’s policy and strategy . They have introduced new working techniques, approaches and bring attitude changes, he said.
Currently industrial and agro- Industrial parks expansion will highly elevate cooperative unions’mission. As the country’s economy is based on agriculture, increasing agricultural production and productivity sustainably will have a matchless role in the country’s economic transformation. The economic transformation will be realized , if we actualize agricultural transformation . “We have to continuously support farmers through technology utilization procedures, agricultural inputs supply with affordable price and in quality , so as to enable the country attaining its set goals in the sector . Hence, to realize such activities , cooperative unions can play a pivotal role in this case. But, when we say agricultural technology supply, it does not mean only supplying selected seeds and fertilizers.”
It comprises of a range of ideas starting from generating ideas up to technology adaptations . From extension service up to selected seed , fertilizer, chemical among others access. Currently, almost 98 percent of agricultural inputs have been supplied by cooperative unions, he said.
Most importantly, after the agency had carried out a rigorous evaluation of cooperative unions performance and challenges in the GTP I, the agency has designed and put a clear directives how they assist the nation’s economic development in the GTPII, he said .
The agency has planned to establish cooperative unions which can stress on quality rather than increasing numbers. “We plan to create those who are strong and competitive , lead by its members , ensure their members advantages, accepted by their members. When we say strengthening, we mean working on bottlenecks, filing budget gaps and managerial challenges. We plan to lead by professionals. Because, most cooperative unions were led by committee.”
They have to be professionalized and modern unions. The agency has tended to create a 10 percent lifestyle difference among agricultural cooperative members and non members.
“ If we create such differences, settle accountability, others will request to be a cooperative membership. Hence, We have to work together to solve push factors and bring them to pull factors. If work on pull factors, we will definitely increase the number of members, ” he said.
Most of our cooperatives have capital challenges. Hence, they have to expand their market destinations. If they have few shares they cannot mobilize in millions. They have to increase the capital magnitude in order to be competitive . Members should buy shares. Because cooperatives are business entities. They are not social entities, he said .
BY ALAZAR SHIFERAW
According to United Nations Conference on Trade and Development report, the least developed countries population constitutes about 577 million people or 62 percent of the population has not access to electricity and this makes 54 percent of people live with no electricity worldwide. Among these peoples 82 percent of them are habitants of rural areas of the countries. This figure also indicates the condition of Ethiopia.
Ethiopia is endowed with abundant renewable energy resources and has a potential to generate over 60,000 MW of electric power from hydroelectric, wind, solar and geothermal energy sources. Despite of this potential, the current country’s electricity coverage is addressed only about 25% of the population with access to grid electric connectivity at most urban centered.
However, the country also facing series problem of power cut and interruption in area where installation was reached and as a result business community is paying the price. On the other hand, there is also a huge demand for electricity; especially in rural areas of the country where the access of electricity was very low. In addition to this, the country is expanding industrial parks and hosting high flow of FDI. In addition to the above critical issues, Ethiopia has planned to be middle income country by 2025. This in turn requires big run in industrial development, remarkable change in science and technology, modernization of agricultural sector and infrastructure building, therefore this all sectors need vast supply of electric supply.
As a response to this requirements, Ethiopia has recently announced its plan of universal electricity Access that affirms electricity access for all Ethiopians by 2025.
During the the recent launching ceremony the National Electrification Program ,the Water, Irrigation and Electricity Minister Dr.Eng. Seleshi Bekele said through the first phase from 2018 to 2022, the program would enable 4.5 million households with grid electric access. And also in covering the remote rural areas, a coordinate off-grid implementation program to accelerate the scale up of solar system and mini-grid solutions would also be launched.
The financial requirements of this vast program which is about 1.5 billion USD was hoped to be fulfilled by the government of Ethiopia and multilateral and bilateral financial institutions and development partners and the private sector as well.
As of the UNCTAD analysis, in order to achieve universal access to electricity by 2030 will require a 350 percent increase in the number of people in the least developed countries gaining access each year, compared with last decades.
Prime Minister Hailemariam, speaking during the launching of the Electrification Program said, “The problem of electricity is the major bottlenecks to the country’s development, and contributed highly to our poverty which threatening lives of millions of our citizens”.
Mentioning that with the ongoing electric generation projects and other renewable energy resources, he further indicated that “By this program we hope to solve the energy problem triggered to our holistic development plan, and it will contribute to our foreign income from power export to the neighboring country” and he also noted that in terms of power supply the Ethiopia’s price is the cheapest one both for household and in provision for investments.
As of the explanation given by ministry of water irrigation and electricity, the current program was prepared by the experience gained from the evaluation of previous National Electric supply strategy implemented in 2015.
Therefore ,the plan has identified three key guiding map of the work, which is to develop by five times the beneficiary households form current status in the next seven years. This means by 2017 E.C. among the estimated 22 million households, 17 million or 62 percent of them will be beneficiary of the grid electric supply.
The second key work of the plan is to address about seven million households that are away from the grid supply, by expanding extra grid alternative technologies. The third key area of the program is to giving more concern and priority for social and public institutions especially for health, education and water supply institutions. With this plan every elementary and secondary schools as well as first instance health service providing institutions will be covered before 2015 E.C.
The ministry also told that, in order to ensure the effective management and political commitment, the steering committees constitutes different experts have been organized under the ministry of water, irrigation and electricity.
World Bank Country Director to Ethiopia, South Sudan and Sudan Carolyn Turk said during the launching ceremony, said ‘The production use of energy is what turns access into economic development, and what guarantee that investment in electricity infrastructure are economically viable. But that means looking beyond satisfying the households basic needs to achieving transformational energy access satisfying producers’ adequate for adequate, reliable and affordable energy.”
Dr.Eng. Seleshi also underscored that, even though this National Electrification Program looks like a bit ambitious, arising from the past project performance experiences, he said that it is possible with committed leadership and strict follow up.
BY YOSEF KETEMA
Ever since the advent of states in human development, the administration of multi-ethnic groups has always been a hard nut to crack. Although the problem has persisted to this day, the right formula to strike the balance in the administration of multi-ethnic societies has still eluded mankind. As a result, the quest for a working module at both national and international levels is still on.
After the bloody scenes of World War II that saw millions perish on account of the racist views of the powerful, a national approach to the administration that is based along ethnic lines has generally been renounced. A paper by Alem Habtu entitled “Ethnic federalism in Ethiopia: background, present conditions and future prospects,” states:
Following World War II and the start of decolonization, newly independent countries in Africa struggled to create viable nation-states combining different ethnic groupings within the territorial boundaries inherited from colonialism. For these countries, modernity entailed the transformation of disparate ethnic groups into a unitary nation-state with a common language and citizenship. France was the model nation-state par excellence. Such a nation-state came to be regarded as a badge of modernity, while “ethnicism” was associated with backwardness and repudiated by modernizing elites. Many African countries followed the nation-state model and attempted to create a unified nation out of disparate peoples.
The paper goes on to explain that the belief that ethnic identity should be denied public expression in political institutions has been conventional wisdom in the continent ever since decolonization. As a result, it asserts, the 1960s witnessed the rise of state nationalism in Africa and state nationalists attempted to undermine ethnic nationalism, which they saw as an obstacle to the modern state formation. The author identifies that replacing ethnic identity that had been held high by the people with national identity became the major challenge for African nations.
The importance people attach to ethnic identity has, however, not been extinguished in the continent over the years as numerous liberation movements and conflicts between various ethnic groups were recorded in the meantime. The nation state model has repeatedly been exposed as insufficient in administering multi-ethnic societies as demonstrated in Rwanda, Sudan, Nigeria, Morocco and Ethiopia to name a few.
In the case of Ethiopia, as indicated in various history books, state formation was a long process of empire expansion that annexed neighboring societies into it. The paper by Alem Habtu argues that three forms of ethnic social engineering have been attempted in Ethiopia over the 20th century.
The first social engineering, it contends, was designed by Emperor Menelik (1889-1913) but significantly elaborated by Emperor Haile Selassie (1930-36, 1941-74). The author argues that it attempted to create a unitary state on the basis of cultural assimilation, using Amharic as the sole language of instruction and public discourse and Abyssinian Orthodox Christian culture as the core culture of Ethiopian national identity. It goes on to say that cultural and structural inequalities typified imperial rule, with ethnic and regional discontent rising until the revolution of 1974 overthrew the monarchy. The paper asserts that the policy of assimilation into mainstream Amhara culture provoked some subordinated ethnic groups into initiating ethnic movements in various regions of the empire-state.
The second ethnic social engineering (1974-91), it contends, was the military government’s attempt to retain a unitary state and address the "national question" within the framework of Marxism-Leninism. To address the latter, the paper explains, it set up the Institute for the Study of Nationalities in 1983. Based on the Institute's recommendations, it goes on to say, the military regime created twenty-four administrative regions and five autonomous regions within the unitary form of state, but no devolution of authority was discernible. According to the paper, the regime initiated a mass National Literacy Campaign in 15 Ethiopian languages in 1979. At the same time as it was making these and related efforts (e.g., in legitimating ethnic folk music and dance) in the direction of cultural pluralism, analyzes the paper, the regime waged a military campaign against ethno-nationalist armed groups. In the last decade of its rule, ethnic based opposition organizations had intensified their assault on the military government and ethnic nationalism became a major factor in the demise of the centralizing military regime.
After the failure of the two attempts in 1974 and 1991, the third ethnic social engineering (1991-present) by the EPRDF government to maintain the Ethiopian state on the basis of ethnic federalism as well as cultural, language and political autonomy at regional and sub-regional levels has been underway.
The paper argues that the ideological antecedents of EPRDF’s ethnic federalism project can be traced to Marxist-Leninist ideology and its conception of “the national question.” The Ethiopian Student Movement (ESM) at home and abroad had introduced Marxism-Leninism to Ethiopia in the mid-1960s. The paper notes that "the national question" had soon after emerged as the burning question. While explaining the historical adoption of the doctrine, the paper states:
The ESM was initially divided on the “correct” resolution of the national question. In the end, the ESM attempted to legitimate ethno-nationalism within the ideological compass of Marxism-Leninism, marking a radical departure from the inherited pan-Ethiopianist ideology … The ESM saw its resolution within the framework of the Marxist-Leninist doctrine of "the right of nations to self-determination, up to and including secession." By 1971, the ESM worldwide adopted this doctrine. When the ESM gave birth to Marxist-Leninist political parties, notably Mela Ityopia Socialist Niqinaqe (MEISON) in 1968 and Ethiopian Peoples’ Revolutionary Party (EPRP) in 1975, it also bequeathed them this doctrine. When the military junta adopted the Marxist-Leninist orientation of the ESM, it conspicuously rejected "the right of secession" doctrine … When EPRDF assumed power in 1991, this doctrine became the basis for constructing a new federal state structure.
The current federal state structure recognizes the importance of ethnic identity and provides people with the chance to administer themselves while maintaining national unity through their willful consent. It gives ethnic groups the room to grow their culture and retain the respect they deserve in their relations with their fellow citizens. It also provides them with the opportunity to use their own languages in education.
Along with these rights granted to ethnic groups comes the responsibility to form an economic and political society. The economic integration of the nine states carved out along linguistic and ethnic lines has grown tremendously over the past couple of decades as the country has experienced an unprecedented level of economic growth and development. The relief from the state imposed measures to keep ethnic identity on the down low has also created a conducive environment for social groups to create a stronger political unity.
Considering the fact that the two previous attempts at social engineering by former regimes failed, the option of ethnic federalism that gives due attention to both ethnic identity and national unity is a viable alternative to administering multi-ethnic societies.
BY BEREKET GEBRU
Ethiopia is blessed with enormous historic, cultural and natural tourism resources. That is why many experts on tourism and those who are fortunate enough to visit the country are often found to say that the nation needs to promote its untapped tourism potentials to the world making use of all available means of communications and media outlets.
In fact, Ministry of Culture and Tourism has been getting involved in intensive promoting activities of Ethiopia's tourism resources. It as well has succeeded in attracting many more tourists to the country and getting registered some of the historic and cultural heritages of the nation by the United Nations Education Science and Culture Organization(UNESCO).
Moreover, the income generating from the tourism sector of the nation is showing dramatic increase from time to time. However, the sector does not seem to benefit much the communities living in the surroundings of the so far discovered tourist destinations in the country. For instance, most of the tourist destinations lack proper infrastructure and other modern facilities that will tempt tourists to stay for long.
By the same token, most of the activities that are being undertaking to promote and persevere tourist attractions and destinations of the nation do not actively involve the community in this regard. As a result, a number of national parks are continuously becoming vulnerable to various manmade disasters like illegal cutting down of frosts, the ongoing grazing activities in the conservation areas and so forth.
Therefore, the Ministry and other pertinent bodies need to create opportunities where the public at large participate actively in every and each tourism and heritage conservation activities in a bid to gain the desire outcome in the overall tourism development endeavors of the nation.
Apart from putting in place the required infrastructure in the places where are identified as tourist attractions or destinations , activities that are supposed to preserve the artifacts and cultural values of the societies should be carried out in planned and integrated manner than ever.
Obviously, any development endeavor that is undertaken based on the interests and desires of the community will be the most effective and sustainable one. Thus, every fellow citizen has to be informed about the importance of the tourism development for the nation and him/herself before taking further actions.
In tandem with making the nation as one of the best tourist destinations in the world, a lot of promotional activities need to be done in sustainable manner the coming days and years, For example, two years ago, a team of anthropologists unearthed a 2.8-million-year-old battered jawbone from Ethiopia. This discovery of earliest ancient human fossil ever, is believed to be a tangible prove to the fact that Ethiopia is the cradle of humankind.
Hence, the Ministry of Tourism and Culture and every individual need to shoulder their responsibility in making the country to be a wonderful humankind destination in the world.
Also the nation needs to promote its tourism potentials regarding bird watching activities. As a huge number tourists travel from one place to another to watch various species of bird across the world , Ethiopia has to disseminate timely information about the flyway of its endemic birds and others . As well as the seasons when the birds are passing through the international known flyway to the interested tourists.
In the end, mostly tourists go to places where they get quality hotel and transport services. Therefore, the nation should speed up the standardization process of the existing hotels as well as hotels that are under construction.
Persevering and conserving tangible and intangible historic, cultural and natural heritages should be the concern of the government and most importantly every individual thereby benefiting properly from the country’s resource.
Geological Survey of Ethiopia announced that it has discovered 21 new potential mining areas.
Organization Public Relations Director Tameru Mersha recently told Addis Zemen Daily that : “ We had planned to explore 35 mining areas in the last Ethiopian fiscal year but we have succeeded in identifying 21 spots.”
According to him, these mining areas are endowed with different kinds of resources and found in nationwide. “ Among the discoveries , nine of them are gold deposit areas and located in Benishangul Gumuz state namely Kamash and Mankush zones.
Industrial minerals had also been found in Dire-Dawa, Belewa, Hulahul and Lege-oda. Steel mineral was discovered at Tigray in four areas. The coal reservation area’s was identified at Dawuro Zone of the Southern Nations, Nationalities and Peoples State as well . In addition , the Gemstone reserve areas were unearthed at Melkakuro, Legederi and Adesri areas of Dire-Dawa City Administration ,” he added.
The Director also stressed that the nation needs to do a lot in mining exploration and capacity building apart from overcoming challenges and realizing the set goals of the organization in a timely manner.
For the current fiscal year, the organization have planned to expand the geological mapping coverage of the country from 84.9 percent to 88 percent by identifying over 41 new potential natural resource areas.
Hence, he said that the new natural resource discovered areas including 27 sedimentary gold deposits, four Gemstone and steel mineral as well as one coal potential areas has increased the mining areas to 215 from 174.
BY YOSEF KETEMA
The Federal Cooperative Agency said that it is working to raise the share of cooperative unions in local agricultural market and agricultural commodities export by 55 and 40 percent respectively at the end of the second Growth and Transformation Plan.
In a recent interview with The Ethiopian Herald, Agency Director General Osman Suru said : “ If there are strong cooperative unions , they will not only benefit the farmers but also become the backbone of transforming the economy through hugely contributing in stabilizing healthy marketing system in the country. ”
He also indicated that so far the agency has organized 82,000 Primary Cooperative Associations with 17. 2 million members of which 5.2 million are females. It has also organized 381 cooperative unions across the country as well.
According to him, 20 ,000 of the cooperatives have been organized under saving and credit associations in both towns and rural areas . They have over four million members of which 42 percent of them are females. So far, their saving has reached over 13.4 billion birr. Hence, cooperative unions will play a pivotal role in making the poor to escape from poverty.
Out of the total savings, almost 65 percent of the money has been provided to women engaged in for agricultural and various income generating activities.
The other 62,000 associations have 20 billion birr capital . The mechanization and agro- processing among other tasks have been mobilized by the aforesaid capital.
For the last four years, cooperative memberships have been doubled itself and their service delivery have been expanding. Their agricultural commodities export share have also been growing, he said, adding strengthening cooperative unions’ means, ensuring the country’s economic development and renaissance journey.
According to Osman, farmers’ benefits will be ensured by increasing their productivity. But, it needs to develop their saving culture as they are required to create additional wealth. By doing so, the agency believes that cooperative unions can begin the value -added production process.
Besides, cooperatives have to supply mechanization service to the farmers so as to hasten to agro- processing production. They have to play a significant role in facilitating the mechanization service provision in the country.
Mechanization service will enhance members productivity and quality yield, he said, adding cooperative unions need to address various challenges most importantly the problem related with attitudinal change among their leadership and at the community level.
BY ALAZAR SHIFERAW