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March 2015


Come May of this year Ethiopia is preparing to carry out the fifth general election since the coming into power in 1991 of the ruling Ethiopian Peoples’ Revolutionary Democratic Front (EPRDF). But controversies surrounding two main opposition parties, all too recognizable, surfaced in an unfortunate fashion and have left a trace of a familiar scenario. Once again the country’s democratization process, already at a snail’s pace, if at all, is under big question mark.

Hone Mandefro and Morten Jerven

A recent report by the World Bank (WB) declared that poverty in Ethiopia is down by 33% since 2000. It attributed the reduction to agricultural growth investments in basic services and effective safety net. “The pace of poverty reduction in Ethiopia has been impressive, especially when compared with other African countries; only Uganda has had higher annual poverty reduction during the same period,” the Bank said in a statement.