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Ethiopia needs Journalist Yayesew Shimelis

Ethiopia needs Journalist Yayesew Shimelis

EsaTed 02/04/2020

 

The first time I saw a Nahoo television panel discussion with journalist Yayesew after the so called, coup d'etat of June of last year in Bahir Dar and the assassination of General Seare, I was pleasantly surprised to see a journalist based in Addis with a substantially different point of view about what was going on in the country and his analysis of the problem with the way the country was led.

It was wonderful to see a journalist focused on the real issues and problems of the time founded on facts and data rather than superficiality and what seemed to be acceptable based on the contemporary narrative of bashing TPLF, a narrative championed by the PM that has come to cost the country in many ways.

When PM Abiy came to power two years ago, he had the support of almost the entire country because for some he was believed to be the healer of the “harm” ethnic politics brought to the country, but also because he was believed to fix the problem with EPRDF. Instead PM Abiy saw an opportunity to cast aside TPLF, fabricate and exaggerate the problem and most importantly close the chapter (27 years) by only holding TPLF responsible for all the ill the county had thereby alienating an entire region and dismantling the countries institutions to only crown himself a leader with a clean slate.

This strategy had lots of flaws from the very beginning and unlike many who claim to have fought for better democracy, unity and development against EPRDF, but decided it was a fight against TPLF and start their celebration, Yayesew stayed true to his professional integrity and love of country and continued to do what real journalists do.

In one interview with EthioTimes he was asked why he did not talk about TPLF and his answer was “I don’t think there is much I can contribute there. There are many who have made it their calling to condemn TPLF. My job is to report what is happening now.” This is exactly the problem with Ethiopia now. The political elite in Addis did not need to fight against TPLF and there is basically nothing there for Ethiopians except for deceitful politicians to hold on to power by showing an imaginary boogieman to be protected from. But Yayesew is a problem for them because he does his best to cut through the lies and smoke screen created to distract us from the real problem our county faces.

Integrity and genuine patriotism is what Yayesew represents and I believe we all should fight for his freedom if we want to have a country for all Ethiopians.

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