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The Impact of Purging Amharas from Positions of Influence and Civil Services: An Ongoing Assignment of Ethnic Elites in Ethnically Constituted Federal Ethiopia

Ethiopia _ Purging Amhara from public service
Addis Ababa City Administration is said to have systematically purged ethnic Amhara employees after it introduced a controversial “competence exam”

Tule Baye 

In Ethiopia, a pervasive shadow of corruption envelops every aspect of public service, with illicit practices becoming commonplace. This concerning pattern can be traced back to the implementation of Business Process Reengineering (BPR) and JEG policies during the tenure of the TPLF-led EPRDF government. The aftermath of purging Amharas from influential positions has only served to fan the flames of corruption, resulting in a significant erosion of trust in public institutions.

What was once a civil service designed to serve the greater good has now transformed into a battleground for political maneuvering. The removal of Amharic-speaking individuals under the guise of civil service reform has not only politicized crucial roles but has also impeded the efficacy of institutions crucial for societal advancement.

While the current Prime Minister’s advocacy for a civil service that reflects the diverse tapestry of Ethiopian society, with an emphasis on Oromo representation, is a step towards inclusivity, the reliance on quotas raises concerns about compromising meritocracy in favor of political expediency. The proposed legislation ‘on civil service’ to further entrench Oromo dominance in key positions raises uncertainties about the trajectory of governance and public service in Ethiopia.

As we navigate these tumultuous times, it is imperative to address the root causes of corruption and political interference in the civil service. Upholding tenets of transparency, accountability, and meritocracy is essential for Ethiopia to construct a public sector that genuinely serves the interests of all its citizens.

To steer the current incumbent towards prioritizing discipline, merit, and good governance above ethnic rhetoric and Oromo dominance, and to counter the dissemination of misleading information, a fundamental shift in approach is necessary. This transformation can only be realized through a united effort to champion freedom and equality for all, including the Fano movement, which embodies Amhara resistance against discrimination and injustices. Fano’s advocacy for freedom and equality encompasses the preservation of merit, property rights, and liberal values, promoting social equality through multiculturalism.”

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


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