From the finding of research that EZEMA, one of the Ethiopian opposition, released, it happened under the watch of Addis Ababa mayor Takele Uma, now Federal Minister for Petroleum and Mining
August 31, 2020
A study released by Ethiopian Citizens for Social Justice (EZEMA) reveals 210,000 square meters of land were illegally appropriated in the capital Addis Ababa. It was appropriated in the form of land grabbing across five sub-cities, it was said.
The study was underway for more than two months in five sub-cities of Addis Ababa and 25 locations. According to the party, residents in the city provided preliminary information for the party. Researchers conducted an interview and a field trip — among other methods — to come up with the conclusion that a land grab and illegal transfer of condominium units had happened.
EZEMA, one of the opposition parties in the country, also said that it has verified that the land grab happened with the direct involvement of government authorities as beneficiaries of the land grab deals. The land-grabbing targeted extensive plots of land in the city, according to the statement from the party.
Months after coming to power, Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed appointed, through a phony back door path, Takele Uma as the mayor of Addis Ababa.
Illegal transfer of condominium units
EZEMA also conducted an investigation into an illegal transfer of condominium units in Addis Ababa. And the findings revealed that residents of the city who had been registered for and saved money for the condo units for more than fifteen years did not get a condo unit.
On the other hand, the condo units were transferred for people who were not registered and or saved money for it. The transfers violated regulations enacted for the distribution of condominium units constructed by the government. EZEMA added that the regulations were also altered in an effort to have a legal ground for the transfer of condominium units for people who would not otherwise qualify for it.
EZEMA is calling for the government to hold those officials who are responsible for the illegal transfer of condominium units and illegal distribution of land.
This month Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed removed Takele Uma as Deputy Mayor of Addis Ababa (he was acting in the capacity of Mayor actually) and replaced him with his close confidant, Adanech Abiebie.
However, residents have been demanding for an elected mayor. Opposition parties like Baladera For Genuine Democracy had been campaigning to expose illegal demolitions, land grabbing, and the illegal transfer of condominium units in the city. Its leader Eskinder Nega has been thrown to prison with trumped-up charges in connection with the latest massacre in the Oromo region of Ethiopia.
EZEMA’s report is noticeably outraging to residents of the city and beyond.
The government of Abiy Ahmed is yet to respond to the allegation.
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