Amhara Region Returning to Normalcy


By A Staff Writer

The State of Emergency Command Post has been carrying out law enforcement activities to restore peace in Amhara region of Ethiopia. Accordingly, the command post said that most areas of the region have now been returning to normalcy. Farmers have restarted farming activities. Roads which have been blocked by the criminal group have also been opened, enabling the transportation of agricultural inputs such as fertilize to various parts of the region.

Activities have also been carried out to strengthen service provisions by reinforcing the peace created in cities and towns of  the Amhara regional state. This has been made possible by the measures  the National Defense Force (NDF) is taking to maintain peace and safety of the public in the region. 

According to Bahir Dar City Deputy Mayor, Dires Sahlu, service providers resumed delivering normal services. The city service-providing institutions, including transport and commercial activities have fully resumed work. According to him, consultation was also held with inhabitants drawn from all sub-cities of Bahir Dar with a view to strengthening the peace created by the state of emergency.

The security situation in Amhara region ensued following the widespread unrest fomented by illegal armed groups. And this endangered the peace and safety of the public, disrupting all social and economic activities of the region. And this prompted the Amhara Regional State to request the federal government for intervention to enforce law and order noting the destabilization was causing large scale of humanitarian, social and economic losses which cannot be controlled through regular law enforcement.

As a result, the Council of Ministers in its 23rd regular session unanimously passed decision to declare a state of emergency in the Amhara region. Regional State governments of Ethiopia and City Administrations expressed concern that the security situation in the region was an attempt to dismantle the country.They reaffirmed their support to the federal government's effort to maintain peace and security as well as  strengthen national unity among Ethiopians.

As the federal government is duty bound to uphold constitutional order in the country, members of the parliament(MPs) were summoned by the House of Peoples' Representatives (HPR) for extraordinary meeting. The HPR convened its 1st extraordinary session to examine and vote for the state of emergency in Amhara region. Accordingly, the House held in-depth discussion on the draft proclamation of the state of emergency passed by the Council of Ministers and approved it, with 12 abstained and 16 against.

In a bid to let peace prevail in the region, the command post has started work, the police and all law enforcement authorities have started to discharge their duties. According to the State of Emergency Command Post,  most areas of the Amhara Region have been returning to normalcy following the measures taken by the military operations.

 The desire of the public for the restoration of socio-economic services is immense in that the inhabitants of the region have been increasingly welcoming the National Defense Force by providing food and encouragement, the Command Post said. 

The operation has produced encouraging results in all areas of the region. As a result, public, private and community services are now returning to normalcy. Farmers are returning to agricultural activities. And things have improved much.

Following such developments, Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister, Demeke Mekonnen told heads of diplomatic missions and various international organizations based in Addis Ababa that the peace consolidation effort in the country is on track. He also indicated that transitional justice and national dialogue processes will be carried out.

The briefing session on current developments in Ethiopia was organized by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Ethiopia together with the Ministry of Justice. During the occasion, Demeke underscored that the declaration of the state of emergency was necessitated by the need to restore law and order in the affected areas.

The Minister of Justice and a member of the National State of Emergency Command Post, Gedion Timothewos, also briefed the participants on the transitional justice policy options and the public consultations on the national dialogue. He also gave an in-depth overview of the security situation in Amhara Region, the rationale behind the declaration of the state of emergency and reiterated the painstaking efforts of the government to restore law and order, to protect civilians, bring about a peaceful solution through dialogue to pave the way for a return to normalcy. According to him, looting and vandalism had occurred due to the security problem in the city, especially in public service institutions. 

 Head of the Amhara Agricultural Bureau, Hailemariam Kefyalw told the Ethiopian News Agency about the agricultural activities following the implementation of the state of emeregency in the region. According to him, the success of the law enforcement operation will play a great role in stabilizing the food market as more than 4.4 million hectares of land have been covered with seeds in the region. He added that agricultural activities have been reinstated and agricultural inputs are being provided and full development activities restored.

As a result, the farmers in the region have started farming activities in cooperation with the leadership and experts. Some 5.29 million quintals of fertilizer have been purchased for the region, out of which some 4.2 million quintals have already been distributed. Since the declaration of the state of emergency, soil fertilizer which was being transported by 370 vehicles have also arrived in the region, he elaborated.


Ethiopian News Agency