List

A current collection of comments and analysis on function of free press in securing food security in Ethiopia

The campaign for press freedom has reached a critical stage in recent weeks. In this context it may be worth collecting commentary from those participating in an effort to regain freedom of the press in Ethiopia – from analysts to reporters to readers. You can also share your opinion on my blog, or throw in a perceptive from elsewhere to this collection.

On top of the countless list free press champions CPJ comes first. Taking the 38th G8 Summit on which Prime Minister Meles Zenawi is expected to take part as an opportunity Joel Simon Executive Director of CPJ wrote a public letter to President Barack Obama.

President Obama has invited Prime Minister Meles Zenawi to attend the G8 Summit to have a discussion about food security on May 19 at Camp David. In the letter Joel Simon highlight the significance of free press in ensuring food security and urge President Obama to raise this issue as a topic of discussion during the summit. He wrote:

Mr. President, we are deeply concerned that Ethiopia’s ongoing repression of investigative journalism fuels tensions that threaten the country’s relative stability and risk unraveling the economic and social progress registered in recent years. Since 2011, under the guise of a counterterrorism sweep, the government of Ethiopia has brought terrorism and anti-state charges against 11 independent journalists, including blogger Eskinder Nega, who may face life in prison for his writing about the struggle for democracy. Such policies deter reporting on all sensitive topics, including food security

You can read the full letter by clicking here but for my readers in Ethiopia you must have a circumvention tool to read the letter on CPJ’s site as CPJ’s site blocked in Ethiopia.

Mohamed Keita/CPJ’s Africa Advocacy Coordinator wrote on Huffingtonpost

Timely and accurate information about conditions of drought and famine in Africa’s Sahel could save lives. But if the press is unable to report freely, how does a country build consensus on tackling national food security and ensure that official policies are the result of broad consultation with all segments of society? What happens when leaders of a nation respond to this caprice of nature by deliberately downplaying the extent of the crisis, limiting journalists’ access to sensitive areas, and censoring independent coverage of the problem, in the name of protecting the country’s image?

Alemayehu G. Mariam an activist based in US wrote an opinion piece which later translated and published on various sites. He stated:

On May 19, President Obama and the G8 leaders will have to face some tough questions: What is the moral hazard of endlessly supplying food relief to the Horn countries? Why should the world continue to help a country that leases millions of hectares of the most fertile land in the country and become the breadbasket for India and the Middle East while its people are starving? Why should the world provide food aid to a country when the ruling regime weaponizes the aid to decimate opposition, crush the democratic aspirations of the people and flagrantly violate human rights? Does aiding dictators who use food aid for political purposes end famine and food shortages in Africa?

Graham Peebles, Director of the Create Trust, wrote on Dissident Voice highlighting how Ethiopia muffles critical voices

Journalists must be free to speak out against the government, to criticize policies of persecution, to highlight the suffering of the people and to draw attention to the multiple human rights abuses taking place within Ethiopia.

Charlayne Hunter-Gault wrote on the Root

It is time for me to return to Ethiopia and try to see the prime minister, to plead yet again for the journalists’ freedom and for their right to free expression. And maybe, just maybe, in the interim, when Prime Minister Zenawi attends a G-8 Summit Food Security at Camp David on May 19, American officials can weigh in, too, on the importance not only of strategic partnerships but also of freedom of speech in a democracy.

African Confidential reported that thought Ethiopia is deemed as the fastest growing economy its approach towards independent voices in a contentious way. You can find a series of reports and netzines campaign on Global Voices.

3 Responses to “Ethiopia’s Free Press and Food Security. Comments and analysis from around the web”

  1. Meron Mamo

    በልቶ ጠጥቶ ዝም የጋን … እንዳይሆንብኝ ነው ለምስጋና ያህል የምጽፍልህ!

    • Endalk

      Thank you so much!

  2. ethiopiahot

    I appreciate you so much. Could we shear our posts in the future?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

* Copy This Password *

* Type Or Paste Password Here *

  Posts

1 2 3 10
April 11th, 2017

Ethiopia spied on US citizen of Ethiopian origin and won a dismissal

Ethiopian government won dismissal of a lawsuit by Kidane, an American citizen of Ethiopian origin who sought to hold Ethiopian […]

March 24th, 2013

From Supreme Court to Council of Ministers

A note on my absence I have not been blogging on my personal blog since last August but not without […]

August 14th, 2012

An Initiative of Ethiopian Media Council: A Media Regulatory Body without the Existence of Media is a Joke

Last week “The Capital”, one of the three weekly English newspapers ran an article about “Members of Ethiopian Media decision […]

August 2nd, 2012

How and who to follow on the whereabouts of Meles Zenawi

Introduction Forty-one days passed since Prime Minster Meles Zenawi was seen on public. In the days after his last appearance […]

July 28th, 2012

Unpacking the rumor dynamics about the whereabouts of Meles Zenawi

Prime Minster Meles Zenawi has always been a man of mysteries and at this time he kept being conspicuously a […]

June 18th, 2012

A Perspective on the New Ethiopian Telecom Bill

Well we Ethiopians have never had dragons in our mythology and folklore like Chinese but so far there has been […]

June 9th, 2012

በዚህ ሳምንት(ከ June 2-9) የኢትዮጵያ ብሎጎች ምን ጻፉ?

አንዳንድ ጋዜጠኞች “አማረ አረጋዊ አሁንም ከወያኔ ስርአት ጋር ይሰራል” ሲሉ ይፅፋሉ። ሌሎች ደግሞ፣ ‘በቂ ገንዘብና ጠንካራ መንፈስ ስላለው ተቋቁሞአቸው እንጂ፣ […]

May 28th, 2012

The New Ethiopian Telecom Service Infringements Law. Is it the most creative way of copying SOPA and PIPA?

The new Ethiopian Telecom Service Infringement Law was ratified last Thursday on May 24th 2012 .The new Telecom Law meant […]

May 24th, 2012

Ethiopia free press situation on the spotlight

A recent G-8 meeting brought Ethiopia free press situation on the spotlight again. The meeting caused gatherings of free press […]

May 20th, 2012

Ethiopia English Blogs Roundup

For my Amharic blog roundup followers I promise it is coming up but for now I decided to do English […]