Escalating tension as Ethiopian Upper House pass new decision on Tigray regional sate

Ethiopian House of Federation bans all forms of communication with Tigray regional State

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borkena
October 8, 2020

The relation between the Federal government of Ethiopia and Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF) – the political force that is currently running Tigray regional State – is not showing signs of improvement.

Rather, the collision like state of relation is worsening thereby escalating the political tension in the country.

On Monday this week, Spokesperson of the TPLF Getachew Reda spoke to BBC Amharic regarding the relation with the Federal government. He said that the Federal government has ceased to exist after September 25 of the Ethiopian Calendar. The party that he represents argues that the government has completed its term of office “in accordance with the Ethiopian constitution.”

He also said that Tigray regional state will no longer recognize Federal government executives, Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed and his Cabinet Ministers. It also said that it will not recognize the extended term of the parliament or the parliamentarians. a political decision from those bodies will not be recognized in Tigray, the spokesperson added.

His party also ordered that ethnic Tigreans who are in the parliament and in the Federal government position to quit and return to their region. Not all members of parliament from the Tigray region accepted TPLF’s decision. Mrs. Yayesh Tesfahuney is one of the 38 members of the parliament who came from Tigray region. She said she represented the people in her constituency, not the TPLF party and declined to leave the parliament.

It is apparent that the decision from the House of Federation on Tuesday came against the background of TPLF’s move to reject

House of Federation Decision

In June 2020, the House of Federation extended the terms of the parliament and regional parliaments after the sixth general election was postponed due to the Coronavirus pandemic in the country.

Despite defiance from TPLF administration in Tigray region, the House still considers itself as legitimate. And no public demonstration is observed so far to protest the extension of the terms of the parliament.

In what seems to be a response to TPLF’s decision in which it withdrew recognition to the parliament, the house of federation and federal government executives, the House of Federation passed a decision on Tuesday against Tigray regional state.

It banned any form of communication with Tigray region council and senior executives. The Federal government itself will not have communication with the TPLF regional administration. However, the House said that the Federal government will work with City and kebele administration without disclosing information as to how the regional level of government will be bypassed.

According to a report by the State Media, the Speaker of the House of Federation and a relevant standing committee in the house will monitor the implementation of the decision.

In late August 2020, the House said that the elections that the Tigray regional state conducted in August are illegal on grounds of contravention with the Federal constitution, which is presumed to be the supreme law of the land.  Subsequently, decisions that the new authority passes will be null and void.

Tigray regional state has responded to the latest decision of the House of Federation. For the regional state, the decisions are illegitimate for federal government power ended on September 25 in Ethiopian calendar (October 3, 2020).

There is noticeable concern that escalating tension between the Federal government and TPLF could evolve to a military action in the Tigray region.

While there seems to be a noticeable call for the Federal government to enforce law strictly, there seem to be also concerns that a conflict in the Tigray region could provide forces that are working to disintegrate Ethiopia and religiously motivated expansionist forces with an opportunity to launch their attacks.

It is also noticeable that there are also voices who tend to think that Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed’s alleged technique of buying time by magnifying economic projects is in fact helping radical anti-Ethiopian forces and expansionist forces buy time for their own project of controlling Ethiopia or disintegrating it.

TPLF does not seem to care about those scenarios but only its goal to restore power which is impossible in the eyes of some political analysts and activists.



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