Perhaps the most controversial statement he made was the answer he gave to the question about shutting down the internet every time there is a security threat.


Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed (PhD) gave the third press conference of his term in the crowded press room of the Prime Minister’s Office on August 1, 2019. There was a marked contrast between the anxiety-filled questions the reporters were asking and the eerie calm with which the Prime Minister was answering them. One of the first questions asked was about the state of relationships between the constituent parties of the ruling coalition – EPRDF. Abiy explained that the only thing new about the tit for tat press statements between TPLF and ADP was that it was done in public. He also downplayed other differences within the coalition, including the ongoing process of forging EPRDF into one national party.


Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed (PhD) gave the third press conference of his term in the crowded press room of the Prime Minister’s Office on August 1, 2019.


“We’re never turning back,” he said when challenged about concerns regarding the human rights record of his government recently. He admitted that about 350 people had been imprisoned on suspicion of involvement in the attempted coup and killing of high-level military officials, but 120 have already been released.


There was a marked contrast between the anxiety-filled questions the reporters were asking and the eerie calm with which the Prime Minister was answering them.




Perhaps the most controversial statement he made was the answer he gave to the question about shutting down the internet every time there is a security threat. He said the internet is not a basic necessity like air and water, therefore, it can be shut down whenever the security situation demands it. On the economic front, he stated that his government’s focus is on changing the investment landscape and creating jobs. Abiy said finishing ongoing projects is the focus of this fiscal year. He expressed his pride in the recent accomplishment of the tree planting campaign, not just as an environmental project, but as an example of the country’s potential to come together to accomplish big national tasks. He also reiterated the decision by EPRDF to hold the 2020 national elections on schedule, even though he left the door open by saying other political parties and the general public will have a say on the subject.


Perhaps the most controversial statement he made was the answer he gave to the question about shutting down the internet every time there is a security threat.




PUBLISHED ON Aug 03,2019 [ VOL 20 , NO 1005]



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