Ethiopian Premier confers with opposition leaders

Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed of Ethiopia today held a conference with the opposition party leaders in Addis Ababa at the UN Economic Commission for Africa Hall.

The leaders of different political parties including Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed, Patriots Ginbot 7 leader Prof. Birhanu Nega have presented papers on the culture of democracy in Ethiopia and the role of politicians and the public.

“This historical discussion platform which is unique to Ethiopia’s political history and narrative, followed the initial meeting hosted by the Prime Minister a few months ago,” the Office of the Prime Minister said, in a statement.

“Today’s meeting, according to one of the conveners Yeshiwas Assefa (Chair, Blue Party) has been organized with a key objective of nurturing the peaceful exchange of political thought in this period of political transition. Discussion papers were presented by the leadership of four political parties,” it said.

During the discussion Prime Minister Abiy stressed the need to make sure that the country will be led by the leader who got direct vote of the people. He made the remark criticizing the political elites, who often claim representing the people without getting direct vote of the people.

He also noted that Ethiopia has a long history as a nation and can’t easily fall apart as some people think. He also urged the political parties to narrow their differences and come together reconciling their political views to form strong alliances that help them to serve better the interest of the people they represent.

Reports show that currently there are over 70 political parties are registered in Ethiopia of which most are specific region and ethic based.

Prime Minister Abiy also stressed on the need for respecting opposing views of other individuals. “Everyone has value to add,” PM Abiy said, criticizing ‘I only have solution’, approach of some political parties in the country.