Tigray regional state opposes Federal gov.t crackdown measures on corruption

Tigray regional state president sees the measures in connection with crackdown on corrupt former authorities as politically motivated rather than a pursuit of rule of law

Tigray _ Debretsion
Debretsion Gebremichael
Photo : SM

November 19,2018

Tigray Regional State President and leader of Tigray Peoples Liberation Front (TPLF), Debretsion Gebremichael, expressed his opposition to measures being taken against former high-ranking officials detained in connection with high level of corruption and egregious human rights violation.

In a press statement he gave in Tigrigna language today to media outlets in the region regarding the situation in the country, he said the process of taking measures on suspects is political rather than legal one.

He went on to explain his point saying that “there has been repeated attempt to put pressure on the people of Tigray. It is happening now in a different way.” The purpose is, he continued, “to make Tigray kneel down.”

While he made it clear that Tigray Regional State does not accept the way that the federal government is going about fighting corruption and human rights abuse, it is not clear enough as to what part of the process is not acceptable.

Debretison also alleges that there is foreign intervention in the process, but he did not name names.

Activists from Tigray region and some politicians like Getachew Reda seem to have a view that Eritrea is involved in the process.

Debretsion’s opposition to Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed’s reformist administration came barely a week after he was hailed by politicized Ethiopians for the statement he made last week: “Tigray will not be a safe heaven for suspects of corruption and rights abuse.” Critics say Debtesion is making a U-turn from the position he announced to people in Tigray last week.

There are speculations that Debretsion’s progressive steps to cooperate with the ongoing reform in the country along the line of ensuring the rule of law came under increasing pressure from radical-ethno nationalist elements within TPLF.

A rumor circulating on social media say former spy chief, Getachew Assefa who is reportedly most wanted person for rights abuse, warned Tigray Regional leaders that he will reveal crime secrets of all of them if they are to hand him over to the Federal government.

Last week, Tigray Regional State Security Forces reportedly captured Brigadier General Kinfe Dagnaw in the Ethio-Sudan border town of Humera, western Ethiopia, as he was attempting to flee the country and handed him over Federal security authorities who brought him to the capital Addis Ababa same day in a military helicopter where he appeared before a Federal court within 24 hours.

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