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Rising tension in Ethiopia; Regional leader arrested, Internet shut down

There is rising tension in Ethiopia as emerging reports say former president of Ethiopia’s Somali regional state, Mahamoud Omar, a.k.a. Abdi Illey, is being held under federal custody barely twenty-four hours after he resigned his post

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There is rising tension in Ethiopia as emerging reports say former president of Ethiopia’s Somali regional state, Mahamoud Omar, a.k.a. Abdi Illey, is being held under federal custody barely twenty-four hours after he resigned his post.

“Officials from Ethiopia’s Somali region told the Ethiopian Somali region media that Abdi Mahmud Omar who resigned 6 August as a governor, was arrested by Ethiopia’s federal military,” the state-run ESTV website reported.

“Officials from the Somali region in Ethiopia have confirmed to us reports of the arrest of Abdi Mahmud Omar,” the report added.

Illey who has been president of the region since 2005 agreed to step down in the wake of a face off between federal forces and notorious regional paramilitary unit, the Liyu police.

Read Also: Will South Sudan know peace? Questions asked as Kiir and Machar sign accord to end brutal war

Despite his resignation, the former leader according to reports maintained his position as leader of the ruling party in the region, Somali People’s Democratic Party.

Meanwhile, authorities have shut off Internet access in the troubled region, residents said on Wednesday, a sign of the challenges facing reformist Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed in containing ethnic tensions in parts of the country.

The residents, one speaking from Oromia region and the other from the city of Harar, said the connection had been down for three days — the first time access has been cut off since parliament lifted a state of emergency in June.

Violence broke out on Saturday in Jijiga, the capital of Ethiopia’s Somali region, with mobs looting properties owned by ethnic minorities. Security officials shot dead four people, a witness told Reuters.

Ethiopian authorities allege the unrest had been stoked by regional officials,
government spokesman Ahmed Shide declining to comment on the internet shutdown, first reported by digital rights group Access Now.

Politics

Tanzanian president, Samia Hassan, positions to become party, CCM’s chairperson. Will she get it?

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Tanzania’s president, Samia Suluhu Hassan is in a firm position to grab the heart of her political party, Tanzania’s Chama cha Mapinduzi (CCM) as she appears the sole candidate for the party’s top position.

New party executives will be chosen at the ruling party’s general meeting.

President Samia Suluhu Hassan is the only candidate for the post of chairperson, while the post of the party’s vice chairperson for Tanzania mainland is reserved for Abdulrahman Kinana who currently holds the post.

According to the party’s publicity and ideology secretary, Mr. Shaka Hamdu Shaka, the meeting will also elect members of the CCM National Executive Committee (NEC), in which 2,703 names were approved to contest for 30 seats.

By party structure, the secretary-general is the party’s top executive who oversees its operations while the chairperson and vice chairperson hold office for five years, the appointment of the party executives is normally done depending on the performance of the respective post holders and fits the existing circumstances.

The development of political parties and their administration is a key factor in strengthening democratic reign all over the world, the control of ruling parties to a large extent usually influence governance and policy. It is hoped that President Samia Hassan’s vantage position in her party, CCM will count for the level of stability that would aid governance in the East African country.

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Politics

South Sudan’s ruling party endorses President Salva Kiir for next election

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The ruling party in South Sudan has endorsed President Salva Kiir as its candidate in the country’s delayed election scheduled for the end of 2024.

President Kiir while speaking at the end of the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement’s leadership session, accepted the ruling party endorsement for the 2024 election.

“We passed through a difficult situation, but we came out and stood together,” the president said to cheers. He added: “I have never failed you before; I believe that we will fight together whatever battles that are coming.”

South Sudan is in a dire situation with approximately two-thirds of the population, in danger of famine as they face acute food insecurity during the next lean season as climate shocks and conflict deepen the already vulnerable situation for many.

South Sudan is in a fragile state between war and peace. In February 2020, after a two-year process, the conflict parties of President Salva Kiir Mayardit and former First Vice President Riek Machar.

President Kiir has been the country’s only president since it gained independence from Sudan in 2011.

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