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News: Federal Court receives amended charge on Eskinder Nega; police detain supporters from court premises

By Mahlet Fasil @MahletFasil

Addis Abeba, December 22, 2020 – Following the ruling from the past hearing to amend the charge against Eskinder Nega et al, the Federal High Lideta, which was looking at prosecutor’s accusations of “terrorism and outrage against the constitution” has today received the revised charge from the prosecutors to further reflect on the charge.

Of the five defendant appearing at the court, Keleb Seyoum, the third defendant, explained to the court that she was happy about her children’s frequently visit yet she requested the court to allow her to get private medical checkup for the health issue associated with her spinal cord and related pains. The judges have accepted her request and ruled that she be allowed a private medical check ups at the said medical center. 

She also appealed that women and men defendants were meeting the lawyers separately and that the time allotted to speak with the lawyer was short; she requested if they lawyer can get them all at once along with to better use the allotted time. The judges suggested that the prison administration could see if it has any procedure that can entertain their requests to meet there lawyer all together.

The remaining defendants including first defendant in the file, Eskinder Nega, have appealed that their families and supporters were prevented from accessing the court room wearing green, yellow, red stripped face masks and requested the court to allow families and supporters to use the trio color face masks and costumes. The judges said they would look into the request to decide on it this coming Friday. They however reminded the defendants to present any of their complaints from this point onward only through writings. The court has adjourned the next hearing until December 25/2020.

Meanwhile, soon after the hearing ended, the police took at least eight supporters of the defendant who attended the court hearing; until the writing of this news the whereabouts of the supporters has not been established.

The police were displeased by the supporters who entered the court wearing casual jackets and later uncovered their clothing depicting symbols of the Adewa victory. AS

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