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Ethiopian court rejects Bereke, Tadesse’ request for phone and computer in prison

Bereket Simon and Tadesse Kassa have been in custody since January 23, and they are currently in a prison near Bahir Dar. They want a cell phone, laptop and internet access “to gather pertinent information” for their cause. The court wants them to exploit resources available to all prisoners.

Bereket Simon_Tadesse Tinkishu
Photo : file

February 25,2019

A court in Bahir Dar, in Amhara Regional State, rejected Bereket Simon and Tadesse kassa’s request for computer and phone in the prison where they are detained, reported AMMA today.

They requested the cell phone, internet service and laptop on alleged grounds of gathering pertinent information and follow up the case against them.

The court told the Defendants that they have no entitlement for special treatment and they need to tap into services in prison just like the rest of the inmates and use desktop computers and landline phones provided by the prison administration.

In today’s court appearance, which is the third one, the prosecutor asked for 14 additional days to complete investigation citing that key witnesses have traveled overseas for medical treatment and have not returned to the country.

As well, prosecutor mentioned that the audit work is not completed and that there are matters that need professional’s follow up.

The court granted prosecutor the requested 14 additional days and ordered for the investigation to be completed for the next court appearance on March 11, 2019.

The other issue that Bereket and Tadesse Kassa brought to the attention of the court is that incomplete information about their cases is being released by media and demanded that media present to the public complete information.

And they cited Amhara Mass Media Agency (AMMA) as an example of media providing the public with incomplete information about their case.

The court ordered that if there are media providing the public with inaccurate information, it is illegal and those media need to release full information.

Bereket Simon and Tadesse Kassa were arrested on January 23, 2019 in Addis Ababa on alleged cases of corruption related to the regional government conglomerate, TIRET.

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