Each week, The Messenger summarizes key stories from Ethiopia tracking economic and political developments.
Fana BC: Draft Bill on Oromia’s Special Interest in Addis Ababa Sent to Parliament
The Council of Ministers has sent a draft bill regarding Oromia’s state constitutionally promised “special interest” in Addis Ababa to parliament.
The legislation includes a raft of joint administrative measures, as well as the Oromo language being used as a working language, and the construction of Oromo language schools and cultural institutions reflecting the Oromo identity.
A council will be established to deal with issues relating to the eviction of farmers for development projects, which was a major cause of protests last year.
Find the full story here: http://www.fanabc.com/english/index.php/news/item/9338-council-of-minister-refers-draft-legislation-on-constitutional-special-interests-of-oromia-on-addis-ababa-to-hpr-for-approval
Medecins Sans Frontieres: Tenfold Increase in Children with Malnutrition in Doolo Zone
An acute humanitarian emergency is unfolding in Doolo zone, in Ethiopia’s Somali region, as malnutrition reaches its worst levels in at least 10 years.
In Danod, Lehel-Yucub, Wardher, Galadi and Daratole, MSF teams have treated 6,136 children under five for severe acute malnutrition since January. This is over 10 times more than in the same period of 2016.
In the first two weeks of June alone, 322 severely malnourished children were admitted in the four inpatient feeding centres supported by MSF. Despite all medical efforts, 51 of these children did not survive. The total number in June has risen to 67 children.
Find the full story here: http://www.msf.org/en/article/ethiopia-msf-sees-tenfold-increase-children-malnutrition-doolo-zone
The Reporter: Parliament Considers Draft Law to Allow Private Train Operators
June 24, Yohannes Anberbir
Ethiopia’s parliament will discuss a draft bill to allow private companies to provide rail transportation services in a move tagged as a liberalizing measure.
If it becomes law, the passenger and cargo operators would be licensed by the state-owned Ethiopian Railways Corporation, which has debts of 120 billion birr.
Find the full story here: http://www.thereporterethiopia.com/content/bill-proposes-liberalization-rail-transport
Bloomberg: Africa’s Richest Man May Quit Ethiopia Over Mining Dispute
June 21, Emele Onu, Nizar Manek
Dangote Cement Plc, controlled by Africa’s richest man, Aliko Dangote, said it may shut its operations in Ethiopia if authorities in the central state of Oromia don’t reverse an order to cement makers to hand over control of some parts of their businesses to local young people.
Oromia state’s East Shewa Zone administration wants the Nigerian company to outsource its pumice, sand and clay mines to youth groups or be responsible for “any problems” that may arise, according to a letter from the authority to Dangote.
Any mismanagement of mining infrastructure including buildings and excavators could “lead to total breakdown of our business,” Dangote Executive Director Edwin Devakumar said. The cement maker will write to the federal government this week to ask it to intervene and will consider shutting the plant in Mugher, about 90 kilometers (56 miles) north of Addis Ababa, as a “last option” if this fails, he said.