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HomeOpinionUnderneath the Veneer of Prosperity:  A Deep-Dive into Ethiopia’s Ongoing Crisis

Underneath the Veneer of Prosperity:  A Deep-Dive into Ethiopia’s Ongoing Crisis

Abiy Ahmed has been making claims about unprecedented production and export of wheat. Recent reports, on the other hand, indicate that his government has been diverting food aid to the market. (Photo credit : Public Domain)

(Essayias Lesanu)

As the sun rises over Ethiopia, casting a radiant morning glow over its vibrant landscapes, the reality on the ground presents a jarring contrast to the picturesque scenes commonly associated with this East African nation. A glimpse beyond the veneer of tranquility reveals a populace besieged by the specter of war, famine, and the destabilizing forces of climate change. Yet, the nation’s government continues to project an image of peace and prosperity, weaving a narrative that stands starkly at odds with the lived experiences of its citizenry.

The Ethiopian government, under the auspices of the Prosperity Party, has been mired in a flurry of controversy. Amidst this backdrop of struggle, it has been accused of an act most reprehensible: the selling of food aid that was intended for the country’s most vulnerable. Donations, offered as a lifeline to Ethiopians grappling with food insecurity, are alleged to have been funneled into the open market, creating a chasm between the purported intentions of the administration and the bitter realities facing its people.

The implications of this alleged action are far-reaching. The beneficiaries of this food aid, the majority of whom are families wracked by poverty, stand to be the most affected. Their dependence on these resources, now in jeopardy, could further exacerbate an already dire humanitarian crisis. Yet, despite the gravity of these accusations, the Ethiopian government continues to project an image of normalcy, conveniently sidestepping the pressing questions about accountability and ethics.

The nation’s economy, too, bears the brunt of this paradoxical situation. As inflation soars and food becomes an unaffordable luxury for many residents of the capital city, Addis Ababa, the government appears to be woefully out of touch. New taxes have been imposed, prices on essential services have surged, and the common man finds himself grappling with an escalating cost of living.

Meanwhile, the administration’s expenditure paints a contrasting picture. Funds continue to flow into official meetings, foreign visits, and elaborate celebrations, fueling resentment among a population fighting for survival. The stark dichotomy between the lived realities of the masses and the opulence showcased by the government creates an unsettling dissonance that echoes across the nation.

The Ethiopian media landscape, heavily influenced by the government and a select few private entities, aids in maintaining this illusion of well-being. Rather than focusing on the widespread hardship, these media outlets highlight luxury and cater to the interests of the affluent and the political elite. This curated narrative of prosperity not only obscures the realities on the ground but also widens the gap between the government and the governed.

In this skewed representation of Ethiopia, Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed is often portrayed as a beacon of hope. His speeches are brimming with optimistic projections, insinuating that the Prosperity Party heralds the dawn of a new era. However, the stark incongruence between his claims and the realities on the ground raises questions about the government’s commitment to its people.

While Ethiopia finds itself at the crossroads of change, it becomes increasingly apparent that the government’s narrative of prosperity is far removed from the challenges faced by its citizenry. The façade of stability risks undermining the urgency needed to address the ongoing crises. As this tumultuous chapter of Ethiopia’s history continues to unfold, the world watches, waiting for the government to pivot from pretense to tangible action in alleviating the suffering of its people.

The Ethiopian government’s rhetoric of prosperity presents a stark contrast to the lived realities of its people. As the chasm between official claims and public perception widens, the government’s credibility stands on shaky ground. The allegations of misappropriated food aid add to the pile of issues contributing to this credibility gap. If confirmed, these allegations could signal a humanitarian betrayal of unfathomable proportions.

This scandal not only undermines the Ethiopian government’s credibility but also erodes the trust of international partners and donors. Future aid could be in jeopardy, further imperiling the lives of millions dependent on these crucial lifelines. Moreover, this could impact the nation’s diplomatic relations and international standing. It is, therefore, incumbent on the government to address these allegations transparently and hold accountable any parties involved.

The escalating economic hardship, coupled with the government’s controversial actions, amplifies public dissatisfaction. As food becomes an increasingly inaccessible luxury and taxes continue to rise, the Ethiopian populace is left grappling with the worsening cost of living. However, the government appears to be prioritizing lavish expenditures over the fundamental needs of its people. This disconnection from ground realities fuels public resentment and could potentially stoke social unrest.

The Ethiopian media, often seen as a government mouthpiece, must assume its role as the fourth estate. By portraying an incomplete narrative that caters to the elite, they alienate a large segment of the population struggling daily for survival. As such, the media is complicit in this ongoing crisis. An unbiased, objective media landscape is vital to hold the government accountable and to ensure that the voice of the masses is not drowned out by the clamor of the privileged.

Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed, leading the Prosperity Party, has often spoken of ushering in a new era for Ethiopia. But the prosperity he envisions seems to be reserved for the few, rather than being a shared dream for all Ethiopians. His optimistic assertions must move beyond mere rhetoric and translate into tangible actions that address the plight of his people.

In the face of these multifaceted challenges, it is critical for the Ethiopian government to step out of its self-created illusion of prosperity and face the stark realities on the ground. Only by acknowledging the struggles faced by its people can the government hope to address them effectively. Transparency, accountability, and a genuine commitment to improving the lives of all Ethiopians must be at the core of the government’s approach.

As the world watches, Ethiopia stands at a critical juncture. The government’s actions in the coming months will not only define its legacy but also the future of this vibrant nation. The path toward true prosperity must be paved with honesty, responsibility, and an unwavering dedication to the welfare of all citizens. It is high time that Ethiopia’s leaders step up to this monumental task and strive to turn their rhetoric of prosperity into a tangible reality.

From Shadows to Spotlight: Ethiopia’s Opposition”

As Ethiopia navigates through these tumultuous times, the role of opposition parties becomes increasingly vital. These entities represent alternative voices and viewpoints that are critical for any functioning democracy. However, the political landscape in Ethiopia paints a concerning picture. Opposition party members are often targeted, with many of them currently languishing in prisons, effectively silenced by the forces in power. These individuals, despite their predicament, must not be forgotten. Their commitment to representing alternate perspectives, even in the face of such adversity, is a testament to the resilient spirit of Ethiopian politics.

The allegations of the government fabricating charges against its opponents are deeply worrying. The tactic of criminalizing dissent threatens the very fabric of democracy, stifling the multiplicity of voices that should be at the heart of political discourse. These alleged tactics not only undermine the rights of the individuals targeted but also jeopardize the democratic process in its entirety.

In this context, it is incumbent upon the Ethiopian public to stand in solidarity with these political prisoners. These individuals, targeted for their dissenting opinions, are victims of political oppression. Their plight underscores the urgent need for the public to rally behind them, advocate for their rights, and push back against any attempts to suppress political diversity.

Civic organizations also have a pivotal role to play in this context. These entities, positioned at the intersection of society and politics, can work to bring about positive change in numerous ways. They can raise awareness about these issues, mobilize public support, advocate for policy changes, and provide assistance to those affected by oppressive tactics. Their work could be instrumental in shedding light on the oppressive practices and rallying national and international support for those unjustly targeted.

However, it is crucial for these organizations to operate independently, free from government interference. Only then can they effectively serve as watchdogs, holding the government accountable for its actions, and ensuring that the rule of law is respected. Their role is particularly critical in the current context, where the space for political dissent appears to be shrinking alarmingly.

The opposition parties, despite the challenges they face, must also strive to be more organized and focused on serving the people. They should work towards presenting a united front, enabling them to more effectively challenge the government’s actions and advocate for the rights of their constituents. The adversity they face should be a rallying call, not a deterrent.

As Ethiopia charts its future course, the strength of its democracy will be measured not just by the actions of its government, but also by the resilience of its opposition, the vigilance of its civic organizations, and the engagement of its citizenry. It is a collective journey that requires the active participation of all stakeholders to ensure that the nation moves toward a future that upholds the principles of justice, fairness, and respect for all voices.

(The author of this article can be contacted via email at Essulesanu@gmail.com)

Editor’s note : Views in the article do not necessarily reflect the views of borkena.com  

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10 COMMENTS

  1. What a wonderful piece of critical concern to the country and its disgruntled leader completely lost in the bush of his own meaningless nightmares and whims! Using this opportunity, let me salute my former high school class-mate at Teferi Mekonnen (Addis Ababa) for sharing his thoughts.

  2. To sum up the mafia group called pp, masquerading as “government”, led by its don and capocrimine, abiy a. also masquerading as pm of all Ethiopians : empty words, empty bravado and last but not least , empty suit.

    pp has laid out all its cards on the table, it is trying so hard to show poker face, but everyone has seen all the cards: it gambled heavy and it has now lost heavy and about to walk shirtless before Ethiopians and the rest of the world.

    Indeed the emperor has no clothes, and he is Emperor Nero II or locally aka 7ኛ ጨ!

  3. አቢይ ሺ አሙት ይንገሥ ፋኖ ይፍረስ ብልጥግና ያሻግራል

    Abiy Ahmed lead Ethiopia as King for millennia , leading amhara and all nations united and prosperous.

    Fano go to hell, OLA to Palace.

  4. የትግሬ ዳያስፖራ ባማሪካ ጎዳናዎች ሲንከባለል ሲፈራገጥ የታየው ለትግራይ ህዝብ በማሰብ በመቆርቆር(አናታቸው ይቆርቆር ሌቦች)እንዳልሆነ መላው ዓለም የሚይስተው ሀቅ ነው፥፥ከሕዝብ ሰርቀው ደሃውን እያስለቀሱ ያከማቹት የግል ንብረታችን ወደ መ ተዘረፈ ብለው ሲላላጡ ሲንፈራገጡ እንደሆ በድጋሚ ሊረጋገጥ ሊጋለጥ ይገባል፥፥የህውሃት አባላትና ዘመዶች የሀገር ሃብት ዘርፈው ወደ ተሻለ የምዕራቡ ዓለም ፈርጥጠዋል፥፥እንርሱን ያልደገፈ ትግራዋይ ሲያሳስሩ ሲያስረሽኑ ኑረዋል የትግራይን ሰላም በመሻት ሳይሆን ንብረታቸውን ለማስመለስ ሲሉ የትግራይን ሕዝብ ሲገድል ከነበረ ጨፍጫፊ ጋር ሁነው አሁንም ለዕርዳታ የገባን ስንዴ የዘረፉ ለትርፉ እየሸጡ ይገኛሉ፥፥በዚህ የጭካኔ ድርጊት ሳቢያ በየቀኑ በረሀብ ምክንያት ህፃናት፥ህመምተኞች እና አረጋውያን እየሞቱ እንደሆነ ይዘገባል፥፥ባማሪካና በመላው ዓለም የሚገኘው የትግሬ ዳያስፖራ በወገኑ ስም ገንዘብ እየሰበሰበ እና በትግራይ ጦርነት ስም እየነገደ ቅጥ ያጣ የግል ንብረት ያከማቻል ይሸቅጣል፥፥ትናንት በጎጥ በከተማ፥በመንደር በወረዳ ባአውራጃ እየከፋፈሉ ያድዋ የድሬዳዋ ያዲግራት የዋጅራት እያሉያንድ የትግራይን ህዝብ ሲከፋፍሉ የነበሩ ትግሬዎች መጥፎ የህውሃት ፈላጭ ቆራጭ ቅርሳን ህውሃቶች ዛሬ መጣፊያ ቢያጥራቸው የደሃው የትግራይን ልጅ እንደ ደጀን እና ጋሻ ለመጠቀም በማሰብ ተወረሃል ተነስ ተደፋ ሙትልን ተሰቀልሊን እያሉ አንድ ሚሊዮን ዜጋ አስፈጁ፥፥እስቲ የትኛው የትግሬ ዳያስፖራ ዩቱበር ነው በድሃው የትግራይ ህዝብ ሥም በጦርነቱ ከሸቀጠው ለወገኑ ያገዘ የመፀወተ አንዳችም የለም፥፥ማይክራፎን ሚዲያ ባይቶና ሚዲያ ኩሉ ሚዲያ ሆራይዘን ሚዲያ የሸቃጭ ስም ጠርቶ አይዘለቅም ዩቱብ ይቁጠራቸው፤፤እልልልል እንኳን የዘራፊ የትግሬ ዳያስፖራ ንብረት ባማራ በሻቢያ ተዘረፈ እልልልልልልልልል ደስይሊአነስ ደስይበልኩም ደሴ ደሴ ኮምቦልቻ እልልልልል
    የህውሃት ባርቲ ይፍረስ አባላቱ በትግራይ ህዝብ እልቂትና ረሀብ ይከሰሱ ዘጥያ ይውረዱ ከብልጥግና ና ሻያ ጋር ባንድ ይቆልመሙ

  5. tghat, aiga news, aiga forum, zera media network, tigray media house are all freeloaders and scammers in diaspora

    tghat, aiga news, aiga forum, zera media network, tigray media house are all freeloaders and scammers in diasporatghat, aiga news, aiga forum, zera media network, tigray media house are all freeloaders and scammers in diasporatghat, aiga news, aiga forum, zera media network, tigray media house are all freeloaders and scammers in diasporatghat, aiga news, aiga forum, zera media network, tigray media house are all freeloaders and scammers in diasporatghat, aiga news, aiga forum, zera media network, tigray media house are all freeloaders and scammers in diasporatghat, aiga news, aiga forum, zera media network, tigray media house are all freeloaders and scammers in diaspora

  6. When all Ethiopians come to their senses and wake up from this stupor of ethnofanaticism, it will be crystal clear that the way out is one and only one: a new constitution that keeps the fundamental and inalienable rights of THE INDIVIDUAL ETHIOPIAN, AS AN INDIVIDUAL CITIZEN OF ETHIOPIA WITH THE SAME AND EQUAL RIGHTS AS ANY OTHER INDIVIDUAL CITIZEN OF ETHIOPIA.

    በጣም የሚገርመው እኮ “የአማራ ባለሃብቶች”: “የትግራይ ባለሃብቶች” : የኦሮሞ ባለሃብቶች” እየተባባሉ መጃጃላቸው ነው::
    በአንፃሩ ” የሃረሬ ባለሃብቶች” : “የወላይታ ባለሃብቶች” : የአፋር ባለሃብቶች ” ሲባል አይሰማም:: ይሄ የሚሳየው ከህዝብ የተዘረፈ ሃብትን በጎጥ ዘር ጎሳ ተከፋፍሎ የመጣ ሌባ ቀማኛና አውሬ ሰው በላ ቡድንን መኖር ነው::

    ክመቼ ወዲህ ነው ጋቢሳ: ቶሎሳ: ቢራርሳ ወይንም ዳምጤ: ሸጉጤ: ደባልቄ ወይንም ሃጎስ: ኪሮስ እና ተክሌ ተሰባስበው ኑ ጎበዝ ያዞዶማ ጥመድ በሬ አንተ ቆፍር ብለው አንድ ላይ ስርተውባለሃብት የሆኑት::

    ሃብት የሚያፈራ ታታሪ ግለሰብ እንጂ የአንድ ጎሳ ግብስግብስ ካድሬ አይደለም!!!

    ሌባ ሁላ ከላይ እስከታች:: አሳ ግማቱ ከጭንቅላቱ ይባላል:: ከላይ እስከታች የባ ጉግ ማንጉግ ስብስብ::

    ሰርታችሁ መብላትን ተማሩ!!!!!!!!!!!

  7. The TPLF leaders and their beneficiaries have brought shame and disappointment to the old, proud and modern nation of Tigray. Theft and embezzlement of food and other aid supplies meant for the needy in Tigray are unforgivable, abominable crimes and crush with the values and beliefs of the civilized Tigrayay nation as a whole. These crimes are not Tigrayan and are borrowed and adopted from the Amhara culture and values. On top of the famine, the corrupt and incompetent TPLF political and military leaders have caused almost a million Tigray causalities and brought humiliations to Tigray. The invincible Tigray nation has faced defeat and humiliation because of these corrupt and greedy TPLF brass.

  8. This was the lowest and shameless act on the part of the the top leadership, the ruling party and the government as a whole. Stealing aid from the needy, poverty-stricken and war ravaged populace is intolerable from diplomatic, ethical and from administration stand points.. There have always been known and exceptional occurence or public scandals for every regime isuch as a culture of graft, theft, misuse, diversions or mismanagement of public resources in the various administrations but such blant and brazen act never took place. Even the TPLF groups was known being highly skilled for it and used often schemes to still public resources and internal aid intended for the poor masses but at least it used to do at clandestinely and cleverly as to avoid detection for an embarrassment reason’s and other diplomatic fallout. But th Abiy his PP-Oromumma cadres there is no pretence any more .. it is done now carelessly out in the open all to see. Worse , it is done and involved by the government institutions like the national defence depart per the allegations of rthe eport. Very sad chapter.

  9. The most depressing part is not the lie Abiy Ahmed tells every time he opens his mouth, but the media that continually gives him a pass. I am speaking of the so called private/independent media, especially those that have been giving him cover and benefit of the doubt all these years. How come they never asked, investigated, looked below the surface into the absurd claim just over a year ago that Ethiopia will be able to produce enough wheat for domestic consumption and be able to export soon? How could this big fat lie get a pass? It should have raised a red flag even for an avowed blind supporter. Because under the best of times when Ethiopia was reporting double digit economic growth (per world renowned economists and financial institutions) there were at least 5 million Ethiopians in need of food aid. How did Ethiopia suddenly surpass all that need in a war economy and magically produce enough wheat? What were the investments made, the capacities developed, where were all these farms, when did the project start and why was the progress hidden? How come this magic didn’t translate in cheaper bread prices?

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