Advertisements
jump to navigation

Global Voices: As WHO Director-General Election Nears, Ethiopia’s Candidate Is Accused of Cholera Cover-Ups. #WHA70 May 16, 2017

Posted by OromianEconomist in Uncategorized.
Tags: , , , , , , , , , ,
add a comment


As WHO Director-General Election Nears, Ethiopia’s Candidate Is Accused of Cholera Cover-Ups

A Unicef-supported pump in Ethiopia. © UNICEF Ethiopia/2016/Ayene. CC BY-NC-ND 2.0.

In January 2017, when Ethiopia’s candidate for director-general of World Health Organization, Tedros Adahanom, stormed to the top of the final three candidates — beating out six other candidates — it was a high time for Ethiopia’s government.

Although Adahanom had faced ferocious opposition from his fellow citizens, he has largely made it through unscathed, giving a propaganda victory for Ethiopian state media. With his well-funded campaign, Adahanom has traveled to more than 120 countries, and his supporters felt confident that his election is all but a matter of time.

Then on May 13, the New York Times ran a story reporting that a “prominent global health expert” had accused Adahanom of concealing three cholera epidemics from 2008 to 2011 during his tenure as Ethiopia’s health minister. Lawrence O. Gostin made the allegations; he is an informal adviser to one of Adahanom’s opponents in the director-general race, the UK’s David Nabarro, but Nabarro told the New York Times that he had not instructed Gostin to make the accusations on his behalf.

Finally! The @NYTimes calls out @WHO DG candidate @DrTedros for covering up cholera epidemic using the euphemism of Acute Water Diarrhea. https://twitter.com/nytimes/status/863525012258656257 

Abebe Gellaw, a prominent Ethiopian journalist in the diaspora, wrote on Facebook that it was only the beginning:

New York Times has a hard-hitting article on Tedros Adhanom. Tedros says it is a “smear campaign”. But the revelation is just the tip of the iceberg. A lot more will come out in the next few days…

A screenshot of the New York Times article on Tedros Adahanom. Click the image to read the story on nytimes.com

The explosive article made Adahanom and his supporters defensive while it created a sense of vindication for his opponents. Adahanom has denied the allegations. A former Reuters journalist who wrote Ethiopia’s cholera outbreak in 2009, however, responded on Twitter that the accusations as detailed in the New York Times story was consistent with what he had seen.

In 2009, when Tedros was health minister, I obtained minutes of an NGO/UN meeting, in which a cholera outbreak was acknowledged.

NGOs, UN and government refused to comment. And UN officials pressured me not to run story. Full story here: http://reut.rs/2pLNcz5 

Photo published for Cholera/diarrhoea outbreak hits 18,000 in Ethiopia

Cholera/diarrhoea outbreak hits 18,000 in Ethiopia

Cholera and other diarrhoeal diseases have infected 18,000 people in Ethiopia over the last three weeks in many parts of the country, including the capital Addis Ababa, according to a document seen…

reuters.com

At the time, UN officials regularly complained in private that lack of acknowledgement from govt stopped them getting more aid in.

In responding to the allegations, Adahanom accused Nabarro’s camp of engaging in smear campaign with imperialistic intentions. Pro-government groups took this line of accusation even further, claiming Nabarro is working with Ethiopian opposition groups that are labeled as “terrorists.”

Ethiopia’s semi-official news outlet accuses the current special advisor to the UN Secretary General, Dr. David Navarro with terrorism.

😳 https://twitter.com/abbaacabsa/status/863805131342700545 

Since April 2014, a popular protest movement in Ethiopia has challenged the government, which in turn has responded brutally. According to Human Rights Watch, at least 800 people have died, and thousands of political opponents and hundreds of dissidents have been accused of terrorism. Since October 2016, authorities have imposed some of the world’s toughest censorship laws after it declared a state of emergency.

Now, the tactic of calling opponents “terrorists” has spilled over Ethiopia’s borders and might create blowback for Adahanom as his record is examined critically by international media.

The health ministers of WHO member states will vote for the new director-general on May 23, 2017.

Advertisements

WHO Director General Nominee Tedros Adhanom Represents Ethiopia’s Repressive Regime. #WHA70 May 5, 2017

Posted by OromianEconomist in WHO.
Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,
2 comments

AP News: UN HUMAN RIGHTS CHIEF: ETHIOPIA BLOCKED ACCESS TO PROTEST AREAS

For Opponents, WHO Director General Nominee Tedros Adhanom Represents Ethiopia’s Repressive Government

Some Ethiopians are fiercely campaigning against Tedros Adhanom, Ethiopia’s candidate to replace Margaret Chan Fung Fu-chun, as director general of World Health Organization, just a few weeks before member states are set to vote on the final three candidates.

Tedros, a former Ethiopian foreign and health minister, along with Pakistan’s Sania Nishtar and the UK’s David Nabarro are the three director-general nominees who made the cut from a larger pool of candidates in January.

Tedros, who is running a well-funded campaign, is considered as a prime contender in the race. His candidacy was endorsed by the African Union, and just last week he picked up an endorsement of Andrew Mitchell, the UK’s former international development secretary.

However, he is facing unrelenting opposition from his own citizens.

Ethiopians who feel marginalized by their country’s government are campaigning hard against him online, arguing he should not be elected because he represents the interests of Ethiopia’s autocratic ruling elites and not the people.

The irony is beyond tragic. The person who is responsible for the crimes against humanity in is running for !

They have set up online petition pages against Tedros and produced a documentary film detailing what they consider to be his failures and his alleged mismanagement of funds while he was Ethiopia’s health minister.

Tedros Adhanom presided and participated in the biggest financial corruption scandal of misusing Global fund in Ethiopia.

They have organized Twitter campaigns under a hashtag #NoTedros4WHO to organize conversations surrounding the topic. To make his Ethiopian government profile at the top of the public’s consciousness, his opponents have share detailed research that accuses Tedros of inefficiencies, misreporting, and exaggerations of his achievements when he used to serve in Ethiopia.

However, amid fears that the campaign might diminish his chances, government groups are also running a parallel campaign supporting his candidacy. They have downplayed the opposition as unpatriotic, mean-spirited and trivial jealousy.

Since April 2014, a popular protest movement in Ethiopia has challenged the government, which has responded brutally. According to Human Rights Watch, at least 800 people have died, and thousands of political opponents and hundreds of dissidents have been imprisoned and tortured. Since October 2016, authorities have imposed some of the world’s toughest censorship laws after it declared a state of emergency.

The role of ethnic politics

Some of Tedros’ detractors say they oppose his candidacy because of his alleged incompetence. But a big part of what drives the fierce opposition to Tedros is the logic of ethnic politics.

Tedros holds a Ph.D. from the University of Nottingham in community health. He studied biology at Asmera University before he completed a master’s degree in immunology of infectious diseases in London.

When people hear his name, as qualified as he may be, his opponents associate him with a repressive Ethiopian government that has killed people, jailed thousands of political opponents, and imprisoned and tortured dissidents.

His meteoric rise to power started soon after he finished his Ph.D. in 1999 when he was tasked to lead the Tigray region’s health department. After two short years in Tigray, he was promoted to Ethiopia’s minister for health by the late prime minister Meles Zenawi, a Tigrayan himself. In 2012 when Meles Zenawi died, Tedros became Ethiopia’s foreign minister.

Tigray is one of the nine regional states that are federated based on ethnolinguistic compositions.

Over the past 26 years, the Tigrayan elites have taken center stage in Ethiopia’s political affairs, largely due to their control of the military, security and the economy of Ethiopia. Though accounting for only 6% of Ethiopia’s population, all senior positions of country’s military and security and the most meaningful positions in state institutions are packed by Tigrayan elites. This has always been a sore point with the elites of the Oromo and Amhara ethnicities, who together comprise 65% of Ethiopia’s population.

Ethiopia’s government has used authoritarian tactics against its people and the country’s politic space is a closed one; however, it enjoys the support of powerful countries such as the United States and the United Kingdom.

Domestic disputes on a global platform

The vigorous opposition to the Tedros candidacy suggests that Ethiopians political struggle has spilled over into the international arena. In some sense, it also suggests that these global platforms have become a substitute for a repressed domestic political space.

Since Ethiopia’s local political institutions and communications infrastructure are controlled by the government, diaspora groups, however sporadic and uncoordinated their efforts may be, have used the opportunity to shed light on the human rights violations using Twitter campaigns.

A twitter campaign on today April 28th Europe Time 18:00 And 12:00 PM Washington DC USA Time 17:00 Uk time Key tags &

Related:-

HUMAN RIGHTS AND THE ELECTION OF THE NEXT WHO DIRECTOR-GENERAL: PUBLIC ACCOUNTABILITY NOW March 18, 2017

Posted by OromianEconomist in Uncategorized.
Tags: , , , , , , , , , ,
add a comment

 

HUMAN RIGHTS AND THE ELECTION OF THE NEXT DIRECTOR-GENERAL: PUBLIC ACCOUNTABILITY NOW

BY , Oneill Institute, 15 March 2017

 

I believe that human rights, and the right to health in particular, should be a top priority of and guiding principle for the next WHO Director-General, whom the world’s health ministers will choose at the World Health Assembly in May. Human rights, after all, encompass the values needed to achieve health for all and health justice, such as equity, non-discrimination, universality, participation, and accountability. They are legally binding precepts. Above all, they embrace human dignity, and the utmost respect for all people in health systems and health-related decisions. They embody the notion of people-centered health services.

This importance demands electing to the post a credible and strong leader on human rights, someone with a history of fighting injustice, of opposing human rights violations, of standing up for the marginalized and oppressed, of resisting political, corporate, or other interests that stand in the way of human rights. This centrality of human rights means electing an individual willing to stand against forces and policies that tolerate or even perpetuate discrimination, or that let political or other concerns override the rights of women, minorities, immigrants, political opponents, or anyone else. It entails appointing a person who views organizations fighting for human rights as partners, even when their own governments may oppose them.

Three candidates remain in the race to be the next WHO Director-General: Tedros Adhanom, David Nabarro, and Sania Nishtar. All candidates should be accountable for their past support of human rights, and outline their plans for furthering human rights around the world if chosen to lead WHO. While it is important for all candidates to do this, one candidate in particular ought to provide a detailed public account of where he stands, and has stood, on human rights. Having spent more than a decade as a cabinet minister in a government that has committed large-scale human rights abuses, Dr. Tedros must make clear his position and intention.

Dr. Tedros served as Minister of Health of Ethiopia from 2005 through 2012, when he became Minister of Foreign Affairs, remaining in the post until a cabinet reshuffle last November. He was, and remains, a member of the Central Committee of the Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF), long the country’s dominant political party, of the more select, nine-member TPLF Executive Committee, and of the Executive Committee of the Ethiopian People’s Revolutionary Democratic Front (EPRDF), the ruling coalition.

Some background on human rights in Ethiopia is in order. It is a country where the ruling coalition won all 547 seats in its most recent (2015) parliamentary election, which surely says much more about the state of democracy than the government’s popularity. Freedom House rates Ethiopia as “not free,” ranking it below than many other of the “not free” countries (p. 18) and with one of the world’s largest declines in freedom over the past decade (p. 10).

In its World Report 2017, Human Rights Watch calls the media in Ethiopia “under government stranglehold,” with at least 75 journalists fleeing into exile since 2010, and others arrested. A 2009 law “continues to severely curtail the ability of independent nongovernmental organizations.” Security forces “frequently” torture political detainees, of whom there are many. Over the past decade, Ethiopia has denied entry to all UN human rights special rapporteurs, other than on Eritrea.

The Ethiopian government’s repressive ways gained international prominence at the Rio Olympics last summer. As he crossed the finish line, winning the silver medal, Ethiopian marathon runner Feyisa Lilesa crossed his arms as a symbol of protest against the government’s violent response to protests in the Ethiopia’s Oromia region. Two months earlier, Human Rights Watch had released a report detailing the government’s violent response to the protests, the most recent round of which began in November 2015. They broke out in response to the government clearing land for an investment project. This fed into wider fears about farmers being displaced without adequate consultation or compensation as part of a master plan to massively expand the boundaries of Addis Ababa, the capital, into the neighboring Oromia region. Adding fuel to the protests were environmental and other local concerns, and longer-standing grievances among members of Ethiopia’s largest ethnic group, the Oromo, of political, economic, and cultural marginalizationAmnesty International reported that least 800 protesters had been killed by the end of 2016.

Ethiopia’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs posted a blog on its official website in October 2016 (when Dr. Tedros was still Foreign Minister) in response to Human Rights Watch’s reporting on Ethiopia. The piece accuses Human Rights Watch of baseless allegations, intentionally misleading its audience, and propagating “scare stories.” It focuses on the NGO’s response to an October stampede during an anti-government protest at an annual festival in Oromia, though addresses Human Rights Watch’s reporting in Ethiopia more generally. Yet Human Rights Watch is widely recognized to employ a gold standard of research. The above-mentioned report, for example, was based on more than 125 interviews, “court documents, photos, videos and various secondary material, including academic articles and reports from nongovernmental organizations, and information collected by other credible experts and independent human rights investigators.” All material in the report was verified by two or more independent sources.

In light of Ethiopia’s severe human rights abuses and Dr. Tedros’s prominent position within the ruling party and the government, a natural question becomes: What was his role in the country’s systematic abuses of human rights?

I do not know the answer, or the veracity of other charges that Ethiopian diaspora organizations have lodged. In his role in the TPLF and ERPDF power structures, is it possible that he tried to change things from the inside, using his position of power within the government to oppose the government’s repression?

What we do know, though, based on the independent reports of Human Rights Watch, Amnesty International, the U.S. State Department, and others, is that the human rights situation in Ethiopia is dire. And Dr. Tedros has long been an important member of the government.

Dr. Tedros has committed to an open and transparent approach to running WHO. Now is the time for him to demonstrate this commitment, publicly addressing the concerns about human rights during his time in the Ethiopian government, and his role, including as a member of the power structures of the ruling party and coalition. States should evaluate his answers carefully and in light of other evidence.

States should also consider whether regardless of Dr. Tedros’s actions within the government – perhaps unless he vigorously fought against rights-abusive policies from the inside – the mere fact of having served (particularly for a considerable length of time) in a high-level post of a government that perpetuates such severe human rights abuses should be an automatic disqualifier from any international leadership position. Would electing someone put forward by such a government, particularly someone who has long served in that government, in some way represent the international community endorsing, accepting, the legitimacy of that government and its policies, and diminish the importance we ascribe to human rights?

We live in an era where human rights remain under great threat. Especially at such times as these, it is vital that states vote for a candidate whose record and integrity will enable them to lead WHO into a new era of health and human rights.

Questions for Dr Tedros Adanhom, Ethiopia’s contender for WHO Director General, 2017 February 9, 2017

Posted by OromianEconomist in Uncategorized.
Tags: , ,
add a comment

Odaa OromooOromianEconomisttedros-adhanom-is-one-the-fascist-tple-tyranny-responsible-for-mass-killings-in-ethiopia

 

Poor young child selling cigarettes and chewing gum for her mother on the streets of Addis Ababa, Ethiopia (photo taken in January, 2017) Dr Tedros Adanhom, until recently Ethiopia’s Foreign Minist…

Source: Questions for Dr Tedros Adanhom, Ethiopia’s contender for WHO Director General, 2017

Expression of Strong Opposition to the Candidacy of Tedros Adhanom, Fascist TPLF Ethiopia’s Foreign Minister, to Lead the World Health Organization. #WHO November 6, 2016

Posted by OromianEconomist in Uncategorized.
Tags: , , , ,
add a comment

Odaa OromooOromianEconomist

Expression of Strong Opposition to the Candidacy of Dr. Tedros Adhanom, Ethiopian Foreign Minister, to Lead the World Health Organization

OSA

October 30, 2016

Dr. Margaret Chan
Executive Director,
Office of the Director General, World Health Organization (WHO)

From: Oromo Studies Association (OSA)


Re:  Expression of Strong Opposition to the Candidacy of Dr. Tedros Adhanom, Ethiopian Foreign Minister, to Lead the World Health Organization


Dear Dr. Chan,

On behalf of the Oromo Studies Association Board of Directors, the Executive Committee and its membership, we are writing to express strong opposition to the candidacy of Dr. Tedros Adhanom to serve as Director General of the World Health Organization. OSA members have been studying health issues along with other matters which affect the well-being of the populations in the Horn of Africa for thirty years, since our founding in 1986. OSA’s opposition to Tedros Adhanom’s candidacy to the top WHO post is based on four principal points:

  1. Dr. Adhanom is unqualified in terms of medical training and professional experience for the position for which he has been put forward.
  2. Dr. Tedros Adhanom politicized Ethiopia’s Ministry of Public Health while in office and the corruption under his leadership became legendary.  He failed to ensure fair distribution of resources to all regions and peoples; his tenure was marked by episodes of denial of care to tens of thousands who deserved treatment during a cholera outbreak.
  3. Adhanom has been complicit in crimes against humanity committed by the Ethiopian regime since he assumed Politburo membership.  While he has served on its Executive Committee, the TPLF has been charged with genocide, ethnic cleansing and widespread human rights violations.  He cannot be absolved from responsibility.  He was complicit in violation of international laws and conventions while serving as the Foreign Minister of Ethiopia when hundreds who were victims of orchestrated security force brutality against protesters, starting in 2014 and continuing until the current day, October 2016.
  4. Tedros Adhanom’s negligence and lack of responsibility while serving both as Federal Minister of Public Health and as the top diplomat in Ethiopia disqualifies him from assuming moral leadership as WHO Director General. His policies and practices while serving in Ethiopia have been contrary to the very principles enshrined in the WHO conventions.

Regarding lack of the professional experience required to serve the World Health Organization, please note that as soon as Dr. Tedros Adhanom received his degree in community heath in 2000, he was appointed as the Director of the Health Bureau of the regional state of Tigray. Very shortly afterward, he was appointed as the Deputy to the Federal Ministry of Health.  By 2005 he was appointed as the Federal Minister of Health. His rapid rise to power was based, rather than on a proven record of competency, on his membership in the Tigrayan Liberation Front (TPLF), the party that has dominated Ethiopian politics since 1991.  In 2012 he was moved into the Foreign Ministry, the position he still holds.

The World Health Organization champions the connection between human rights and health. Achieving the highest attainable standard of health (health being defined as “a state of complete physical, social and mental well-being…”) is a fundamental right possible to ensure only if people are free from torture, from inhumane and degrading treatment, from discrimination or exclusion and able to freely participate in identifying their social problems and finding solutions. To the contrary the TPLF/Adhanom government exposes the peoples in Ethiopia to poverty, homelessness and disease and torture or killing of those who oppose their policies, through massive farmer evictions, confiscation of land and resources and withholding services which severely limit the choices in life of the dispossessed.

Since Ethiopia was also signatory to WHO’s 2005 “International Health Regulations” Ethiopia’s Ministry of Public Health was obligated to report to WHO any sign of a cholera epidemic.  Dr. Adhanom’s failure to declare the cholera outbreak in Oromia demonstrates his disregard for the kind of responsibility required by WHO from member states. Appointing such an official to serve as Director General of WHO will be adding insult to the injury already suffered by thousands of Oromo families who lost their loved ones due to his dereliction of duty in the position of Ethiopian Minister of Public Health.  Whether Dr. Adhanom’s refusal to declare a cholera outbreak was out of utter negligence of responsibility or was a politically motivated inaction, he violated his main duty and highest moral responsibility of a minister of heath, which is to save lives. With this malfeasance in his record, it would be scandalous to select him as the Director General of WHO.

Again in 2016, as occurred in 2008, a cholera outbreak is building in Oromia with the same result that the Ethiopian government is failing to report it.  This move to hide the extent of the problem reveals a pattern that gives support to the belief of many residents of Oromia that it is the intent of this regime to reduce the Oromo population in Ethiopia.  We urge the WHO to give attention to this pattern.  Oromo are reminded that the former Prime Minister Meles Zenawi boldly asserted “the majority can become minority.”  Such politicized mishandling of public responsibility is beyond malfeasance. And a key member of the regime responsible should not be advanced to an even more elevated level of international public trust.

Our second objection to Dr. Adhanom’s candidacy concerns corruption and politicization of the health services. Regarding corruption, when Dr. Adhanom was Ethiopian Federal Minister of Health his office was characterized by widespread misappropriation of aid funds. For example, “the Global Fund to fight AIDS Tuberculosis and Malaria,” was used to carry out politically motivated programs. In 2010 unacceptable allocation of funds led to a 79 percent cut in United States’ financial assistance that was desperately needed for the treating HIV/AIDS patients across the country.   Adhanom’s record in office indicates that he would not meet the minimal requirements for the WHO Code of Conduct in conducting the work of the office of Director-General.

Our third objection to Dr. Adhanom’s candidacy pertains to his complicity as Foreign Minister in the violation of international conventions. Exploiting the ‘opportunity’ provided by the international war on terrorism, the leaders of the TPLF regime have deliberately characterized all independent Oromo activists and Oromo political organizations as “terrorist” and prosecuted them under the so-called “Anti-Terrorism Proclamation of 2009.”  The Ethiopian regime has sent security agents across international borders to kidnap, deport or kill those it suspects of opposition.  Back in Ethiopia the deportees are imprisoned, tortured and many are killed without mercy.

The crime of crossing international borders and kidnapping asylum seekers has been intensified and extended to other Ethiopian refugees under Dr. Adhanom’s tenure as Ethiopia’s Foreign Minister. Of particular concern to OSA is the disappearance of an iconic figure who is the holder of Oromo sacred knowledge.  Kidnapped by Ethiopian security agents abroad in the last two years is Dabbasaa Guyyoo, a highly respected 88-year-old, Gadaa historian, cultural guru and thinker. Mr. Guyyoo, who is considered by many as the Dalai Lama of the Horn of Africa, was kidnapped on September 27, 2015. He lived under the protection of the UNHCR for 35 years in Kenya and travelled extensively internationally to teach about Oromo traditional knowledge. It is believed that he has been deported to Ethiopia as Tedros presided in the responsible role in government. Also among Adhanom’s government’s well-known victims are Andargachew Tsige of Ginbot 7, an Ethiopian opposition party in exile, who was kidnapped on 23, June 2014 while in transit at Sana’a Airport in Yemen and deported to Ethiopia. David Ojulu, an Anuak refugee from Gambella, was kidnapped on December 17, 2013 in Juba, South Sudan, and deported to Ethiopia. Both Andargachew and Ojulu remain in prison in Ethiopia. Dr. Adhanom’s candidacy should be obviated by his complicity in such human rights violations in Ethiopia that have been extensively documented among others by Amnesty International (AI), Ethiopian Human Rights League (EHRL), Human Rights League of the Horn of Africa (HRLHA), the Oromia Support Group (OSG) and Human Rights Watch (HRW).

Since 2010, the Ethiopian regime, has been involved in large scale rural and urban land transfers which have evicted hundreds of thousands of Oromos and others exposing them to homelessness, poverty and disease.  The most infamous of such actions of the regime was the Addis Ababa Master Plan (AAMP) exposed in 2014, whose design was launched to expand Finfinnee/Addis Ababa to twenty times its current size evicting millions from their homes and impacting over six million Oromo in the vicinity.  By 2014, while Tedros Adhanom served as active leader in the ruling party structure, the AAMP had already caused the destruction of the livelihood of over 30,000 Oromo households or 150,000 men women and children when it caught public attention. This act of “ethnic cleansing” was openly referred to as such by inside participants.  The design called for denial of livelihood to Oromo farmers in the vicinity of Addis Ababa, but also the suppression of Oromo culture, language and identity in its path.

When its enormous threat against the Oromo people was exposed in April 2014, the AAMP was met by peaceful protests with massive turnout from Oromo students and farmers across the region of Oromia. The response of the TPLF regime to peaceful demands to stop the project were to send government security forces to fire live ammunition into groups of peaceful Oromo student demonstrators, killing 70 innocent individuals, including an 8-year-old boy, wounding around one thousand unarmed civilians while detaining nearly 50,000. By the end of 2014 the protest abated in the wake of assurances that the program would not proceed.

The student protest against the Master Plan was re-ignited, however, in November 2015 by an incident in Ginchi, a small town 80 km west of Addis Ababa, which revealed that the Master Plan was indeed proceeding apace despite assurances.  The news and the protest spread rapidly across Oromia, becoming a national uprising. The response from the government was brutal everywhere, ushering in destruction across the country. On January 21, 2016 the European Union condemned the brutal crackdown by Ethiopian security forces in Oromia.  By June 16, 2016 Human Rights Watch reported that over 400 Oromo nationals had been killed by government forces and that thousands wounded and tens of thousands had been detained without trial or charge.  At the time these events were known to be unfolding in Ethiopia, its Foreign Minister, Tedros Adhanom was put forward as a candidate for Director General of WHO!  It is an outrage.  Since his nomination, the killing has escalated while Tedros Adhanom continued to preside actively as Ethiopia’s top diplomat, its Foreign Minister, intensifying brutality in the implementation of these policies.  He cannot be absolved from responsibility for their lethal impact.

The peaceful resistance which persisted for months in the Oromia region, even in the face of deadly retaliation, spread to other regions by mid-summer.  In July 2016 protests were mounted in the second largest and second most populous Amhara region. On August 6-7th, 2016 protests in the Amhara and Oromia region were met with a brutal crackdown by the regime’s forces, killing at least 100 in the Oromia region and 70 in the Amhara region. The death toll was likely much higher.

Circumstances have deteriorated under Adhanom’s recent tenure.  On September 3, 2016, gunfire broke out at the Kilinto Prison in the capital city Addis Ababa where around three thousand five hundred prisoners had been detained in connection to the Oromo protests.  Within hours the facility erupted in flames. The wrapped bodies of about two dozen prisoners were delivered to the local hospitals. Deliberately causing the death of prisoners is an obvious crime against humanity, for which Dr. Adhanom shares responsibility as a leading member of the group who set this policy.

Dr. Adhanom’s comment on events that culminated in a massacre were to defend his government’s worsening brutality.  Last week he shamefully blamed the victims of the Irreecha Massacre and the media who reported the events for what had happened (see Africa News, Oct. 24, 2016). The massacre took place at the Irreecha Oromo cultural and spiritual festival which was attended by over two million persons on October 2, 2016 at sacred Hora (Lake) Arsadi in the town of Bishoftu, Oromia, about 50 km south of Addis Ababa. Taking anti-government slogans shouted by festival goers as an excuse, Ethiopian government forces fired barges of teargas and bullets from the ground and charged the massive crowds of celebrants using an Ethiopian government helicopter gunship.  If the purpose was to create pandemonium and cause the highest possible number of causalities, then the Ethiopian government authorities were not disappointed at what they achieved.  Hundreds of men, women and children were killed. There are many more individuals who are still missing and hundreds who were wounded without recovery.

Following the horrors of the Irreecha massacre, on October 9, 2016, the Ethiopian government declared a state of emergency over the entire country, shutting down internet, communications via social and telecom media.  In an attempt to make it impossible to count their victims or to track their arrests, the government has created conditions where they pursue perceived enemies with impunity.  The Ethiopian blackout is complete and the people more desperate than in any previous condition described above.

Dr. Adhanom should not be allowed to escape from accountability for these crimes committed by the government in which he holds a central responsible position, by finding refuge in one of the United Nations most revered bodies.  To elect him would be a travesty.  He does not deserve this honor and he is not qualified professionally or morally to assume this office.

Dr. Adhanom’s tenure as head of the Ethiopian Federal Ministry of Health revealed a disturbing lack of ethics.  He should be barred from assuming moral and administrative responsibility for leading the WHO. In fact, we see his consideration for appointment to serve as Director General of WHO to be a disservice to the purposes for which WHO was established.  Ignoring such a record could bring damage to the reputation of the UN, and injury to the morale of those who work under the auspices of WHO to improve the health all people across the globe.

We call upon the member states of the United Nations to investigate the information provided here and reject the candidacy of Dr. Adhanom for this high office.  To do so will provide .

We urge all who are committed to safeguarding the integrity of the WHO to oppose Dr. Tedros Adhanom for the position of Director General of the World Health Organization.

Sincerely,

Professor Mekuria Bulcha

Chair, OSA Board of Directors

C.C:

  • Fadéla Chaib, WHO Spokesperson, WHO Department of Communication,

Email: chaibf@who.int

  • Gregory Hartl, Coordinator, Media Relations,  E-mail: hartlg@who.int
  • Tarik Jasarevic: E-mail: jasarevict@who.int
  • Christian Lindmeier, Spokesperson & Communications Officer,

E-mail: lindmeierch@who.int

 


OSA

The Oromo Studies Association (OSA) is an independent international scholarly organization, which holds not-for-profit status in the United States. The main objectives of OSA include (but are not limited to): (1) to serve as an umbrella organization in guiding, developing and promoting scholarship on the history, economy, health, education, politics and welfare of the Oromo and other people in Ethiopia, and (2) to foster understanding between the Oromo and other people in Ethiopia and globally. OSA members include Oromo, other Ethiopians, Africans, Americans, Australians, Canadians, Europeans, Japanese and many other nationals.


Well, Ethiopia’s man who pretends to represent Africa can not even understand the very simple questions asked by the audience after his presentation. Dr. Adhanom plans to reduce the WHO down to a regulatory enterprise and a security agency (the violent & repressive concept that he learned from his TPLF bosses) rather than making it a prestigious standard setting body for the global health. Alas!  Amboo Ilma Arsee   #VoteNo4Adhanom
#CluelessTedros was used to get praise from international community by presenting cooked numbers to show case false expansion of healthcare in Ethiopia. But when he was faced with group of experts vetting candidates for for WHO directorship, he could not understand or answer very elementary questions. This guy was so intoxicated with his own propaganda, he decided to run for WHO directorship and expose his own incompetence the lies of his regime.  Jawar Mohammed

 

 


AS: CRIMES AGAINST HUMANITY: LETTER TO THE EDITOR: WHY DR. TEDROS ADHANOM SHOULD NOT LEAD THE WORLD HEALTH ORGANIZATION September 27, 2016

Posted by OromianEconomist in Uncategorized.
Tags: , , , , , , , , ,
add a comment

Odaa OromooOromianEconomist

tedros-adhanom-is-one-the-fascist-tple-tyranny-responsible-for-mass-killings-in-ethiopiaOromo child murdered by Fascist TPLF Ethiopia forces in Jimma, Oromia on 16 May 2016Fascist TPLFAgazi forces shooting #Oromprotsters in Babbile town, East Hararge . 14 March 2016Oromo children, victims of fascist TPLF mass killings in Oromia, 2015 and 2016

Dr. Tedros sits in EPRDF’s central committee responsible for the killings of peaceful protesters (of not only  the more than 200 killed during the aftermath of the May 2005 elections) but also for the more than 600 peaceful protesters killed in the ongoing nationwide protests, as per the Human Rights Watch’s latest report.

 


LETTER TO THE EDITOR: WHY DR. TEDROS ADHANOM SHOULD NOT LEAD THE WORLD HEALTH ORGANIZATION

Dear Editor,
tedros-adhanom-is-one-the-fascist-tple-tyranny-responsible-for-mass-killings-in-ethiopia

(Addis Standard) — As a matter of historical coincidence, both Ethiopia’s Ministry of Health and the World Health Organization (WHO) were established in 1948. Dr. Tedros Adhanom became the former’s first unqualified but politically appointed minister in history and he now wants to take over the later, in a similar and unjustifiable trajectory.

First, it has to be established as to how such a man with all sorts of personal shortcomings, including but not limited to, professionalism, integrity, leadership quality and even humanity made atop Ethiopia’s political hierarchy. Dr. Tedros is the executive member of the TPLF, a party constituting the core of the lofty ruling coalition, EPRDF, which ruled Ethiopia for over quarter a century with an iron fist. TPLF elites hail from the minority Tigrean ethnicity in the north who played a significant role in ousting Ethiopia’s communist dictator, Derg, in 1991 only to appear yet as another version of it under the leadership of the late Meles Zenawi. By effectively annihilating the country’s capable political elites, the late Meles created an amorphous political buffer around himself where opportunist elites such as Dr. Tedros were to be welcomed. The promotion of Dr Tedros from a mere malaria desk expert at the regional health department of Tigray to the ministerial portfolio of Ethiopia in 2005 was part of this trajectory. Accordingly, the biologist-turned malaria entomologist became the first health minister with non-health background in the history of the Ethiopian state.

Following the death of his late mentor Meles Zenawi, the malaria expert even astonished the whole world by becoming, all of a sudden, the minister of foreign affairs in a country home to some of the most experienced career diplomats. In a nutshell, both his shortcomings in professional competence and the typically opportunist twists of the political pathway for his ascendancy to power proves the modes operandi of his party TPLF and how such people like him benefited from that.

It’s true that under his tenure as a minister of health, there were some progresses registered in the country’s health sector. But, the narrative that Ethiopia registered miracles, as even wrongly propagated by few western media, should be filtered so carefully. Ethiopia’s health sector is still categorized by the WHO itself among those “in critical crisis”. Nevertheless, because of the politically motivated decisions made by the regime to crackdown on international NGOs working on human rights (especially after the 2005 elections fallout) thereby channeling some huge international funds only into the health sector, there were progresses made during his tenure as a health minister. This is particularly true in the areas of health facilities expansion and the globally politicized care involving maternity and child health. But below, I outline examples of Dr. Tedros’ grim failures even in these allegedly modest gains.

Corruption: As huge international funds pumped by NGOs & philanthropists to strengthen Ethiopia’s health sector, mismanagement of funds and corruption were the hallmark of Dr. Tedros’ tenure as a minister of health between 2005-2012. This was brought to public attention as some media went on meticulously reporting it. Even the US government was obliged to cut funds for HIV/AIDS by 79% because of such financial mismanagement and corruption.

 Inequality in health: Ethiopia has been praised for its achievements in the areas of maternity and child health. While there could exist some elements of truth in this intentionally hyped story, taking it as such would amount to a gross distortion of the country’s reality. In fact, the progresses made were achieved only for the wealthier class in the health quintiles. According to the latest report by the “Count Down” project, a US-funded project established in 2005 with the aim of assisting countries to generate and utilize empirical evidences in order to track progress towards health-related MDGs – particularly in areas of Reproductive, Maternal, Newborn and Child Health (RMNCH) – the disparity across wealth quintiles – between the poorest 20% and the richest 20% of the population – is extremely high in several indicators. For instance, the under-5 mortality rate, though declined overall, has actually increased among the poorest 20% of the population, from 130 in 2005 to 137 per 1,000 in 2011. Disparities in coverage also remain large across Ethiopia’s administrative regions, and between residents of urban and rural areas. According to this report, not only in remote regions like Afar and Somali, but also in the largest & central region of Oromia, from where 60% of Ethiopia’s GDP comes, a significant majority receive two or less out of eight essential RMNCH interventions; while in Addis Abeba & Dr. Tedros’ homeland of Tigray in the remote north, a vast majority of children receive at least six out of the eight.

Politicization of health: Dr. Tedros left the Ethiopian health sector very much politicized and crippled, which has to be yet depoliticized if it has to function properly. The more than 35,000 female health extension workers trained for six months and deployed across Ethiopia during his tenure, which many praise him for, are more of political cadres who are deployed in rural household families to serve the TPLF than helping health workers. This has been verified by their own internal memos and reports on various occasions.

In addition to these, under Dr. Tedros’ tenure, Ethiopia experienced outbreaks of many rudimentary diseases, like the cholera outbreak in 2006, 2008 and 2011 among others. Even though the Ethiopian law stipulates cholera to be a “mandatory notifiable disease”, Dr. Tedros left the legacy of keeping disease outbreaks “secrete”. Today that legacy remains as cholera ravages the whole country including the capital Addis Abeba.

Even worse, Dr. Tedros sits in EPRDF’s central committee responsible for the killings of peaceful protesters (of not only  the more than 200 killed during the aftermath of the May 2005 elections) but also for the more than 600 peaceful protesters killed in the ongoing nationwide protests, as per the Human Rights Watch’s latest report.

In my view, Dr. Tedros doesn’t deserve to represent the face of such a prestigious global organization as the WHO, which is much regarded as an utmost humane. Ethiopia has many talents and capable leaders both in the health sector and beyond to offer to the WHO if professional competence, integrity and leadership quality are to be considered. Dr. Tedros Adhanom is not one of them.

Girma Gutema

PhD Candidate, University of Oslo