It has been weeks since Eskinder directly communicated with party officials
Days after Balderas Party Chairman Eskinder Nega announced quitting leadership and membership in the party over what he described as repression from Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed’s party, it is unclear as to where exactly Eskinder is.
The party on Monday has a press statement. It announced that the party does not believe that Eskinder is abducted or arrested by the ruling party.
What the party did clarify is that there is no communication between Balderas Party leadership and the former chairman. It stopped as of July 23, 2022.
Balderas party leadership did not meet Eskinder in person or by phone since then, according to Keleb Seyoum who is the head of the party office.
Amhaha Dagnaw read out the party’s statement.
“Since there was no anything that he told us where he went and under what circumstances he is, there was no condition to give a satisfactory answer,” the party said.
Eskinder Nega’s spouse and his son live in the United States. Based on the statement from the party, his spouse, Serkalem, is not shocked that the whereabouts of her husband are unknown. And she did not ask for clarification from the party or from the support group overseas.
Eskinder Nega’s handwritten letter of resignation from his party position was received last week.
In the letter, he said that he reached a point where he can no longer continue to work as part of leadership or as a member of Balderas because of outright dictatorial pressure that the ruling party created.
The party said it got the letter at a time when it was waiting to hear about the circumstances and whereabouts of their party leader.
According to a report by DW Amharic, Ethiopian Intelligence agents had been watching Eskinder Nega since his return from the U.S. where he traveled to meet with party supporters.
Initially, Eskinder was released in 2018, when the ruling Ethiopian People’s Revolutionary Democratic Front (EPRDF) decided to release all political prisoners, after spending over six years.
Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed’s government arrested Eskinder Nega again in July 2020 on trumped-up charges of “inciting violence” just days after the assassination of Oromo music singer Hachalu Hundessa.
Abiy’s government released Eskinder early this year when it decided to release Sebhat Nega, Chief ideologue and founder of the TPLF who was captured during a military operation in the Tigray region in January 2021, and Jawar Mohammed.
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