Ethiopia's university chaos 'lack sound reason,' students asked to respect curfew


Negeri Lencho, Ethiopia’s Minister of Information has disclosed that relative calm had returned to university campuses rocked by deadly violence weeks back and that teaching and learning had started.

In an interview with the state-owned ENA, the Minister said the clashes that occured in some universities ‘lack sound reason.’ He added that persons who sought to exploit the situation had spread the effects of the clashes to other areas.

He bemoaned how investments in infrastructure had been damaged in the process. His colleague Minister of the Education Ministry Tilaye Gete had said in mid-December that the clashes were political in nature.

The government is convinced that the problems are complex and need lasting solutions.

“The government is convinced that the problems are complex and need lasting solutions,” he said stressing a similar point by Lencho that the problem was created by a few students sponsored by forces bent on disrupting the country’s peace.

Lencho also implored students to abide by a curfew and the deployment of security forces because both measures were to cement the peace. He said the government had no plans to permanently station security forces on the campuses.

Whiles investigations continue into the cause of the respective incidents, the involvement of student leaders, community elders and university authorities had greatly helped achieve the current peace.

The United States and the European Union in recent statements have expressed worry about the deteriorating security situation in Ethiopia. Aside the varsity chaos, federal forces have killed 16 people in the town of Chelenko in Oromia state while Oromia’s border tension wil Ethio-Somali state has claimed over 60 lives.

The ruling Ethiopian People’s Revolutionary Democratic Front (EPRDF) has also admitted the security crisis and said it was working at a durable resolution.

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