Ethiopia’s Ruling Party `Heavily Favored’ in Election, European Union Says -bloomberg

November 8th, 2010 Print Print Email Email

Ethiopia’s electoral playing field was “heavily” balanced in favor of the ruling party in a May vote in which Prime Minister Meles Zenawi and allied parties won all but two of the 547 seats in parliament, the European Union said.

Local administrations that are almost entirely controlled by the Ethiopian Peoples’ Revolutionary Democratic Front should in future have a reduced role in elections to make the process fairer, the EU said in its final report on the vote published on its website today. The EPRDF controls more than 99 percent of local administrations in the country.

Ethiopia’s government rejected the criticism of a process it has described as free and fair.

“The report casts doubt not on the standards of the election, but on the integrity of the observers,” government spokesman Shimeles Kemal said in a mobile-phone interview today.

The report was presented in Brussels, the Belgian capital, after observers failed to get permission to deliver the report in Addis Ababa, said Thijs Berman, a Dutch member of the European Parliament who led a team to the Horn of Africa country in May.

Shimeles said he had “no idea” why the report wasn’t presented in Ethiopia.

The EPRDF used a combination of harassment and arrests and withholding food aid and jobs to thwart the opposition Medrek alliance ahead of the election, Human Rights Watch, a New York- based advocacy group, said in a March 24 report entitled “One Hundred Ways of Putting Pressure.”

‘Curtail Suspicions’

The EU mission recommended that if the National Electoral Board relied less on local administrations it could “could prevent and curtail suspicions of governmental control of the electoral process.” The ruling party alliance won all but four of the 1,904 seats for the regional state councils in this year’s elections.

Changes to the legal framework and the fragmentation, imprisonment and exile of opposition figures following disputed elections in 2005 have made it difficult for opponents of the ruling party to operate in Ethiopia, the EU said.

The mission said the EPRDF used state resources to fund its campaign and reporting by state media ahead of the vote was biased in favor the ruling party. Freedom of assembly was sometimes not respected for opposition parties, and the volume of complaints of intimidation against the ruling party, local administrations and police was a “matter of concern,” it said.

Meles is a former Marxist guerrilla leader who has led sub- Saharan Africa’s second-most populous nation and top coffee producer since 1991. Under his rule, Ethiopia has pursued an economic model that mixes a large state role with foreign investment in roads, agriculture and power. Last year, almost a sixth of the population relied on food aid.

To contact the reporter on this story William Davison in Addis Ababa via Johannesburg at 1999 or pmrichardson@bloomberg.net.

  1. Drama
    | #1

    GUYS, LOOK AT THE WORDING OF A PROFESSIONAL “FERENJ” NEWS WRITER. ON THE TITLE IT READS “HEAVILY FAVORED”, IN THE ARTICLE IT READS “HEAVILY BALANCED IN FAVOR”? THIS IS A MEDIA THAT HAS INTERNATIONAL REPETITION. I DON’T THINK IT IS NECCESSARY TO USE THE WORD BALANCED IN THIS STATEMENT UNLESS WE ARE SUPPOSED TO BE FOOLED. MAYBE THEY CAN FOOL THE WEST , BUT ETHIOPIANS DIGEST EVERYTHING IN THEIR VIEW AND LANGUAGE WHEN THE DAY IS OVER. NICE TRY BLOOMBERG.
    THE EUROPEAN UNION MAY HAVE WRITTEN SOME TRUTH ABOUT THE FLAWED ELECTION, HOWEVER THEY HAVE LEFT OUT A LOT OF RELIABLE INFO. SOME OF THE REPORT ON THE ELECTION IS ALSO BIAS. THEY REPORT SO MANY PAGES ON THE PROCESS AND CAPABILITY OF GOV. RUNNING THE ELECTION WHICH IS NOT THE MAIN CONCERN OF THE ETHIOPIAN PEOPLE. TRANSPARENCY IS THE ISSUE. THEY SHOULD HAVE RATHER WRITTEN 10 TIMES MORE ABOUT ELECTION TRANSPARENCY THAN ELECTION PROCESS.

  2. አንበሴ
    | #2

    የአውሮአፓም ይሁን የሌላ ታዛቢ ለሃገራችን ኢትዮጵያ የሚፈይዱት ምንም ነገር የለምና ትግሉ በማንኛውም የትግል አይነት መስክ በጽናት ይቀጥላል:: መርሳት የሌለብን ነገር ፋሽስት ወያኔዎች ስለሰው ሕይወት ምንም ደንታ የሌላቸው አውሬዎች መሆናቸውን ነውና ከሃገራችን ምድር እነዚህን ጸረ ሕዝብ ጸረ ሰው ሃይሎችን መቅጣት ቅድሚያ የምንሰጠው ተግባር ነው::
    ትግሉ ይቀጥላል!!!

    ኢትዮጵያ ለዘለአለም ትኑር!!!

  3. Lier, Looter and Killer
    | #3

    Not one sane informed Ethiopian would vote willingly for insane, brutal, heartless, callous, untrustworthy, inhumane, psychopath murderer, looter, and evil tyrant Meles that hates Ethiopia and Ethiopians. End of story.

  4. Abebe
    | #4

    ታጠቅ በል ፈረሰህን ጆብራ የጆብራዉ:
    ከቀይ በህር ይጠጣ ሉጋሙን አላቀዉ:
    በነአሉላ መንደር መጋለቡን ይቻለዉ:
    የነበዛብህን ክንፍ አፈላልጎ ያገኘዉ:
    ስቀለዉና ስቀለዉ መለስን ሰቀለዉ:
    መስቀል አደባባይ ላይ አቃጥለዉ:
    የርካሽ የሃዲዉን አስኬሬኑን ጎትተዉ:
    ለጋሹን ለገስን መሬትን የምሸቅለዉ:
    ቅዱስዋን አገር አፈርዋን የሚመርዘዉ:
    ስቀለዉና ስቀለዉ እንደገና አቃጥለዉ
    ቀይ ባህርን አሻግረህ አመዱን በትነዉ :
    ከሰዉ ያልተፈጠረዉን ጨካኙን ግደለዉ:
    የሸብሬ የቢንያም ሕይወት ያልደነቀዉ:
    በጋራ ሱፊ ተራራ ላያ በጅብ ላስበላዉ:
    በሙታን ሸንጎ ተጠርታ አይሻ ትንገረዉ:
    እህተነሽና እናቶች ሰማዕታት ይፋረደዉ:
    ዉሎ አድሮ ሲነጋ የተረሳ እየመሰለዉ:
    በእባባ አስነድፎ በአንበሳ ላስቆረጠመዉ:
    ከየስርቻወ ባሻግር ቴጲን እንቁጠረዉ:
    ሜኒን ስንሻገር የጠቀረዉን ለቆላዉ:
    አርባጉጉ እያልን የአዋሳን እንዘክረዉ:
    የጋመቤላም ሰዉ ያይደል እንበለዉ:
    የአድስ አበባን ጎዳናን ላጨቀየዉ:
    ለደደብ አምባ ገነን ሰዉ ለዘረኛዉ:
    ሆዱ ላይ ረግጠህ አንገቱን እረደዉ:
    አሱን ገለህ የመፅደቅህን እወቀዉ:
    ሚሊዮኖችን ታድገህ አገር ላዳንከዉ:
    ይሸበራል አራት ኪሎ ሰባትን ስተጠራዉ:
    ከግንቦት ከአመታት በወራት ስታሰላዉ:
    ስቀለዉና ስቀለዉ መለስን ሰቀለዉ:
    የአባ ጅፋር ልጅ እኔ ነኝ በለዉ:
    የመይሳዉ የካሳ ዮሃንስ የፈጠረዉ:
    የጦናና የአብደሳ የዘራይ የጀግናዉ:
    የታመኝ በየነ የእነ አበበ በለዉ:
    የብርቱካን ምስል የአልማዝ የሐሌዉ:
    የመስፍኔ ጥላ ብርሃኔ ስያቃዠዉ:
    የሚያሽርህ ጠበቃ አለማየሁ ነኝ በለዉ:

    እጅጉ ነኝ ሣይንትስቱ መሰረቱ የአርበኛዉ
    ዳዊት የኢብሳዉ ሌንጨዉ ነኝ የባቲዉ:
    ከአለክሳንደሪያ ኮብልሎ ስራከስ የገባዉ:
    እኔ ነኝ አርቺማድሰ ኮከብ ቆጣሪዉ:
    ፊዚክስ ካስቶሮኖሚ የሂሳብ ቀማሪዉ:
    ሁንለትና ዘብድዎስ ቀራጩ የገሊላዉ:
    ዉሸታም የዉሸታም ዉሸትን የማልወደዉ:
    ከዉሸት ባሻግር አንዳችም ችሎታ የሌለዉ:
    በቃላት ጋጋታ አምባሻ የመይጋግረዉ:
    ስቀለዉና ስቀለዉ መለስን ሰቀለዉ::

  5. idiot dictator
    | #5

    the EU and it’s report are unacceptable in Ethiopia. They just made a fool out of themselves. these colonizers want to come back to Africa.

  6. The Obnoxions
    | #6

    Guy’s what report are you talking! Oh! the EU report about election in topia that report! let Meles read it to his creep wife before she go to bed! that’s all I can say.

  7. Democracy at it’s worse
    | #7

    Drama,
    EU election observers are well aware that Ethiopians were pressured and intimidated to vote for the tyrant ruling party.

Comments are closed.