Addis Ababa City mayor, Adancech Abiebie, on Sunday said that she met with Patriarch Abune Mathias. The discussion I had with Holiness Abune Mathias was productive, she said, in a status update she shared on Facebook.
Furthermore, she added that an agreement is reached to resolve issues raised on the part of the Holy church in a ” discussion , peacefully and legally.”
She thanked the patriarch for the time she had.
From the picture she shared, the meeting happened in the patriarchate. Earlier this week, she refused to meet with the Holy Synod in the patriarchate and proposed the meeting to take place at Sheraton Addis.
However, the Ethiopian Orthodox Church has not yet released a statement regarding the meeting between the Mayor and Patriarch Abune Mathias.
Addis Ababa city Administration, and Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed’s government, had been giving lip service to address demands that the Ethiopian Orthodox Church has.
One of the issues was the ownership over Mesqel Square, where the church celebrates Meskel Bonfire, an event that is recognized as UNESCO heritage.
Adanech Abiebie made a remark about Meskel Square during a speech she made in an event organised by a protestant Pastor, Zelalem, saying that Mesqel Square belongs to all Addis Ababans. Her speech outraged followers of the Ethiopian Orthodox Church.
Her remark came at a time when the laity was mourning the killings of three young men in the capital Addis Ababa on the occasion of Epiphany celebration.
Followers of the Ethiopian Orthodox Church are disenchanted that attacks on the Church have been intensified at different levels of government, especially after Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed (who is a Protestant) came to power in 2018.
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