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News: Addis City Admin annuls public housing lotto due to ‘intrusive tech thuggery’

Officials announcing the annulment of the recent condominium lotto for Addis Abeba city residents. Picture: Mayor’s office

Addis Abeba: The Addis Abeba city Administration has annulled recent public housing lotto under the city’s government’s condominium saving scheme known as 20/80 and 40/60 and was about to be distributed for thousands city residents. The Mayor’s office said yesterday that the lotto has been revoked entirely after allegations of tech tampering by the city administration officials were investigated.

Adenach Abiebie, Mayor of Addis Abeba, Shumete Gizaw (PhD), Director General of Information and Network Security Administration (INSA), and Hailu Adugna, team lead of the investigating committee from INSA, gave the briefing last night.

several irregularities were reported including adding thousands of names who have neither been saving nor registered with banks into the lotto scheme

According to the explanation given by the officials, an investigation team consisting of individuals from the IINSA, National Intelligence and Security Services (NISS) and the Ministry of Innovation and Technology had been established to bring clarity into malfunctions of the lotto, which the city admin said early this was done without human contacts and through technological assistance. However, several irregularities were reported including adding thousands of names who have neither been saving nor registered with banks into the lotto scheme.

Mayor Adanech noted that both the administration and public were saddened by the difficulties experienced during the drawing of the lotto and thanked the city’s residents for what she called was a sense of effort towards solidarity with the administration.

Alluding to the said intrusion, the Mayor commented that ‘technological thuggery’ had been committed which sought to achieve not only “theft of residential units but also political goals” at the expense of savors.

The Mayor said that the administration initially received and trusted. “There were reasons for believing this. Because in the past, there were systems that were developed and used.”

However, irregularities emerged later on including through “institutional connections.” Although it stated at the time that INSA had certified the tech assisted lotto, the letter stating that was not authentic. The data “has been in the hands of people for five days and this was done by the orders of the authorities,” according to the mayor, who assured the public that suspected experts and individuals in various positions of leadership were arrested and under investigations; other actions would be taken proportionally, she said.

Ten officials from the city administration whoa re accused of tampering with the system are under investigation, according to state media reports late last night.

They are: Dr. Muluken Habtu, bureau head, detained due to alleged involvement in the system; Abraham Sermolo, deputy Head of the bureau; Mebrat Woldekidan, director; Habtamu Kebede, software developer; Yosef Mulat, software expert; Getachew Berihun, software expert; Qasim Kedir, software expert; Sitotaw Gizachew, developed the software; Bayeleign Reta, software controller;
Micheas Tolerra, housing information and technology expert; and Kumsa Tolla, housing information and technology director. AS

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