Tuesday, August 20, 2013

A year after longtime leader's death, Ethiopia has seen little change

ADDIS ABABA, Ethiopia –  Candlelit vigils and the launch of over two dozen parks are taking place in Ethiopia on the first year anniversary of the death of long-time ruler Meles Zenawi.
Tuesday's rituals underscore the approach Meles' successors have employed during the last year: a continued lionization of the late prime minister.
During a ceremony attended by regional leaders such the presidents of Somalia and Sudan, Meles was praised as "Africa's voice." His successor, Prime Minister Prime Minister Hailemariam Desalegn, praised Meles as a "champion of the poor."
Critics say that Ethiopia has maintained the same oppressive anti-free press policies that Meles put in place.
Meles became president in 1991 and prime minister in 1995, a position he held until his sudden death last year.