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Army will protect Ethiopia’s legislative order, senior official says


The National Defense Force will protect Ethiopia’s legislative order and will face the dangers threatening the country today, said the head of the Military Operations Division of the armed force, Berhanu Jula.


Although he did not mention what or who threatens the stability of the nation, his comment came after a statement by the authorities of the Tigray region, according to which they will ignore the mandate of the federal government as of October.

We are very well prepared to enforce all laws and we will be forced to adopt measures against those who, by wanting to impose their will, try to violate the constitution or subvert institutional precepts, said the general, also deputy chief of staff.

Scheduled for last August, general elections were postponed due to the impact of Covid-19, at the proposal of the National Electoral Board and with the approval of Parliament, but the Tigray People’s Liberation Front contested that ruling.

As an alternative to postponement, the Federation Chamber decided to extend the mandate of Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed until sanitary conditions made it possible to hold elections, when the legislative structures that expired next October would be reconstituted.

On top of criticizing the parliamentary ruling, the Front called and carried out votes for the 190-seat regional congress, with the participation of four other parties, declared unconstitutional by the premier, who accused the organization of challenging the electoral body.

Jula addressed other issues in an interview with the Ethiopian News Agency, but his observation regarding the protection of the statutes produced the most reactions and is considered a warning of how the army will respond against constitutional crimes.

Those who consider there will be no legitimate government in Ethiopia after September 30, should take care of their actions and refrain from violating the constitution, as the Defense Force will guarantee its validity, said the high official.

Tigray, where a government led by Debretsion Gebremichael was established, also does not accept the recent provision of Parliament, which approved holding the votes in all regions during the current fiscal year (July 8, 2020 – July 7, 2021).

It determined to carry them out despite the deterioration of the health situation caused by the disease since last March and in strict compliance with the measures adopted by the Ministry of Health to contain the spread of the SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus.