Addis Abeba -The team of experts leading public consultations on transitional justice policy options in Ethiopia under the auspices of the Ministry of Justice has revealed the conclusion of the consultations which have been underway across the country since March 2023.
In a press conference on Tuesday, the experts stated that, despite the initial intention of conducting consultations in 59 locations across 12 regional states, four of these sessions which were planned to take place in Sekota and Debre Markos in Amahara, and in Dembi Dolo and Yabelo in Oromia regions had to be canceled due to security concerns. However, meetings for consultation were successfully held in 55 places, comprising the capital city, Addis Abeba, and the Dire Dawa city administrations. Over 200 law professors from 40 different universities actively participated in these meetings.
Furthermore, the experts noted, during the nine months of consultations, relevant inputs have been garnered to prepare a comprehensive and inclusive transitional justice policy in a process that they hailed as a new phenomenon in the country’s history of policy making. Organizing and analyzing the inputs, preparing a summary report on the main findings and finally formulating the national transitional justice policy framework are said to be the tasks ahead.
The experts announcement of the conclusion of the consultations came in the backdrop of calls from local and international human rights groups for the renewal of the mandate of the UN’s International Commission of Human Rights Experts on Ethiopia (ICHREE) amidst continued allegations of human rights abuses and lack of accountability in the country.
On 31, August, more than 30 civil society and human rights organizations have also expressed their disappointment, in an open letter addressed to the African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights (ACHPR), over the decision to terminate the mandate of the commission of inquiry on Tigray without publishing a report of its findings and recommendations. AS