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Universities in Amhara Region to reopen 

Parents suspicious of the decision made by the Ministry of Education

Universities in Amhara

By Staff Reporter

ADDIS ABABA – (BORKENA) – The Ministry of Education has announced that public universities in the Amhara Region would start teaching and learning processes as of January 10, 2024, Ethio-FM 107.8 Radio reported here last Saturday.

Due to the current security crisis in the Amhara Region, the universities in the region have long been unable to call their students and start their regular teaching activities in the first semester of the 2023 Ethiopian academic year.

However, the Ministry of Education has conducted a series of discussions with the regional command post, security structures and relevant bodies. Education Minister Birhanu Nega (Professor), the newly appointed president of Amhara Region, Arega Kebede, presidents of the ten universities in the region and the relevant security bodies of the region have convened for consultation.

Following the discussion they have decided that since “there is relative peace in the region, the  universities can call their students and proceed with the teaching and learning process”.

Accordingly, the information released by the ministry indicates that the universities will call students and begin their teaching and learning activities within two weeks time, starting from January 10, 2023, according to the news source.

The Ministry of Education called on the students assigned to the universities in the Amhara Region to follow the announcements to be made by the universities, Ethiop FM 107.8 Radio reported. 

Meanwhile people are expressing concern that the call for university students have not taken the precarious situation of the region into consideration. Some were heard saying that in a situation officials and the people are unable to move round the region, calling the university students for registration emanates from the manner of irresponsibility. “Officials cannot go from place to place, innocent people are being struck by drones, public transports are not available as needed… People are asking how a government who claims to watch its people dares to take risks and invites university students to get registered and proceed with their education in this situation.

The President of Bahir-Dar University, Firew Tegegn (Dr.) said last Sunday in an interview he had with the Weekly Amharic, the Reporter that the university was ready to enrol students starting from last October 02, 2023. But that has not been implemented due to the security situation in the region, according to the president.

“There is no any gap of preparation, from our side,” said the president of the university. “There is, however, a security situation, which is under the control of Bahir-Dar University. There is also a security situation that is beyond our control. We can’t do anything about the issue that is out of our supervision,” the president underscored.

The President of Bahir-Dar University added that, “after calling the students, what do I say if something bad happens in a situation we can’t resist? That’s why we have taken  time to enrol them,” he said.

It is to be recalled that BORKENA reported on November 7, 2023 quoting General Secretary of the Forum for Regional Higher Learning Institutions, Asmare Dejen (Dr.), as saying that  the ten universities in the Region have reached a consensus not to call their students until the peaceful situation in the Region improves.  

The General Secretary explained that closure of the road due to the dynamic security situation of the Region; the fact that the universities cannot take responsibility if a conflict arises after students enter the campus, and the concern of the bodies that provide various services and resources (like meal service) to the universities were said the basis for the decision made by the Forum not to call the university students.

That time the parents of the students said that they accepted the decision made by the Forum. 

The question parents are asking now is if there is any change in the security situation in that Region. 

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