ADDIS ABABA Ethiopia (Xinhua)
-- The Ethiopia Federal
Attorney General announced on Monday it has dropped
charges against prominent Oromo opposition figure Bekele
Gerba who is in prison on terrorism charges, reported
state affiliated media outlet Radio Fana.
suspects had also their terrorism charges dropped, it
deputy head of the Oromo Federalist Congress (OFC), has
been in jail for more than two years over terrorism
charges relating to allegations of instigating unrest in
Ethiopia’s largest regional state Oromia.
OFC is the
main opposition party to the ruling coalition Ethiopian
People’s Revolutionary Democratic Front (EPRDF) in the
restive central Oromia regional state.
clear whether the discontinuation of charges would lead
to the immediate release of Gerba, as he has recently
been sentenced to one-year imprisonment for contempt of
court by the Ethiopian Federal High Court.
Attorney General does not have the authority to free
Gerba from his sentence for contempt of court, it is
expected his case will be referred to the Office of the
Ethiopia President Mulatu Teshome for pardon.
of prominent opposition figures was part of slogans
protesters used to demand political and economic change
in 2016 led to the deaths of hundreds and was dubbed by
analysts as the gravest challenge the ruling coalition
Ethiopian People’s Revolutionary Democratic Front faced
in 25 years.
involving parts of the three most populous regions
Amhara, Oromia and Southern regional states led to an
imposition of martial law in October 2016 which was only
lifted in August 2017.
Kenyan police arrest
nine Ethiopians for being in Kenya illegally
NAIROBI (Xinhua) --
Kenyan police on Sunday night arrested
nine Ethiopians from a residential house in Nairobi for
being in the country illegally.
police commander Japheth Koome said on Monday the nine
suspects were waiting for their agent to move them to
South Africa where they had been promised jobs.
the Ethiopians were nabbed after security officers had
been tipped off on their presence.
the suspects will be arraigned in court later this week
before being deported to their home.
crackdown comes after the police on Feb. 7 arrested 29
Ethiopians after they were found being transported in a
lorry in Nairobi.
They were to
get shelter in the area before leaving for South Africa
where they say they would get better jobs when police
arrested them on Wednesday night. The driver of the
lorry was also arrested in the operation.
authorities have blamed the vastness of the region for
the runaway influx of foreigners into Kenya through
Moyale on Kenya-Ethiopia borders and the porous border
rights organizations and aid agencies have blamed
poverty in Africa for the rising cases of human
that the huge supply of labour both skilled and
unskilled makes them vulnerable to criminal syndicates.