Afar may 30/2018 The people of Afar have gained economic, political and social benefits from the federal system including the establishment of strong self administration, Vice Chief Administrator of Afar Regional State Awol Arba said.
In an exclusive interview with ENA, the Deputy Chief Administrator said that there was no self-administration prior to the establishment of the federal system subsequent to the change of regime in May 28, 1991.
“Before Ginbot 20 the Afar People have not had their own centralized administration. So Ginbot 20 helped the Afar people to have their own political self administration; strong organization of the people was very important to enhance freedom and self-administration and development. ”
According to him, there was a wide gap in economic, political and social developments in the region and with the rest of other regions in the country.
However, the regional government has been working to narrow the gap in collaboration with the federal and neighboring regions.
“The regional government has been working to narrow the gap by using itself, the federal government and the cooperation from Tigray and Amhara Regional governments. Through the agreements of development cooperation to build various social and economic institutions that has registered significant results.”
He also said that the federal system allowed the people of Afar to fully exercise their constitutional rights to build versatile capacity through the expansion education, including higher education in the region.
“We are very proud to witness the establishment of a university in our region, which can be taken as one of the signs of the fulfillments of citizen’s right to development where there was no even a kindergarten in the past, there was no infrastructure development program aimed at benefiting our people.”
Currently, the regional government is striving to expand investments in the region, including the establishment of regional investment commission that would facilitate the flow of investments, he noted.
According to Awol, now over hundred -thousands of hectares of land has been identified and ready for investment in the region and more than 30 investors have completed their investment projects in Semera.
Ahmed Hajji, an investor and a level one contractor in Semera, told ENA that the regional government reaped significant achievements in shifting the livelihood of pastoralists by addressing basic social services such as education, health and potable water.
According to him, the regional government is also helping to promote local investors through various incentives.
“Before I joined the construction sector I was working as salt distributer which helped me to get starting capital. Since I was born here and member of the community the government has been urging us to engage in various construction contracts that are underway here”
Zinash Abrha, who has invested in Semera, said “it would be difficult to be successful in my investment without the support of the regional government.”
“We were not be able to be here without the government’s support, which has been supporting us with various incentives including tax exemption and other important areas of incentives.”