Two experts take part in Ethiopia’s Global Dialogue roundtable on diversity in Addis Ababa.
A country roundtable on the theme of unity and diversity held in Addis Ababa on March 14, 2008, attracted a wide range of participants representing academia, public institutions, civil society and the press.
The roundtable discussions showed that federalism has become a point of national consensus, as virtually all agreed that the federal option is the only viable and reasonable alternative for Ethiopia. It was further argued that the existing consensus has developed because of the dramatic change in people’s attitude in light of the practical results of the system. It is now clear that the country will not fall apart because reforms have made it possible for different ethnic groups to portray their sub-national identities, cultures and values within a federal Ethiopia. Meanwhile, differences of perspectives still exist on several issues such as the functioning and operation of the federal system; the economic viability of the constituent states; power sharing schemes and protection of local minorities. The issue of decentralization of power and resource to the regional states was also an important subject of discussion.
Assefa Fiseha and Mohamed Habib, Director, Institute of Federalism and Legal Studies, Ethiopian Civil Service College; Director, Institute of Federalism, Addis Ababa University, coordinated the event.
Participating in the roundtable were: Ewnetu B.Debela, GR-Head, Ministry of Federal Affairs; Semir Yusuf, Lecturer, Addis Ababe University; Beyene Moges, Senior Report; Lealem Desta, Reporter, Monitor; Getachew Assefa, Assistant professor, AAU Law; Tsegaye Regassa, IFLS/ECSC, Ethiopian Civil Service College; Daniel Demissie, Sec. Committee, House of Federations; Dr. Petra Zimmermannsteinhart, Advisor, House of Federations; KiDane Kiros Bitsue, Lecturer, AAU; Dejene Sakoume, Senior reporter, Ethiopian Herald; Addisu Gebreigzabhier, Project officer, MOFA; Elias Eshetu, Journalist, ETV; Habtamu Abino, Secertary General, House of Federations; Elisa Salah, Journalist, EPA; Adugna Feyissa, Journalist, EPA; Solomon Negus, Assistant Professor, ECSC; F/Mariam Tesfaye, Reporter, The Monitor; Hadish Abreha, G.P.A.; Million Beyene, Senior reporter, Walta; John Markakis, Advisor, Ministry of Federal Affairs; Getachew Tsere, Reporter, ETV-2; Dagnchew Gione, ETV-3; Mujib Jemanl, civil, EAE; Temesgen Zewdie, MP, Ethiopian Parliament; GebruG/M Uttura, Whip, UEDF; Kassa G. Yohanes J. Yhoanns, Forum for Demo and Federalism; Kumlachew Dagne, Program coordinator, InterAfrica Group; Assefa Fiseha, Director, Institute of Federalism and Legal Studies; Mohamed Habib, Director, Institute of Federalism, Addis Ababa University; Sarah Vaghen, Advisor for AAU and MOFA, Institute of Federalism, AAU.