21 June 2014

Ethiopia: Police Arrests Senior Officials of Former Railway Enterprise in Dire Dawa

Officers of the Federal Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission, Dire Dawa Branch, arrested former Ethio-Djibouti Railway Enterprises senior officials including head of the Dire Dawa office, Ayele Woldeyohanes, along with other four senior management members in connection with alleged corruption, The Reporter learnt.

Former head of the Dire Dawa station of the enterprise, Ayele Woldeyohanes, has been arrested early on Tuesday along with his colleagues Fikremariam Abebayehu, former head of Akelo Workshop, Fantahun Gebeyehu, who was former head of the railway and building department, Tadesse Hailemariam, former head of compartment and Derb Gudeta, former head of trade and transport department.

According to sources, the detainees are already accused of inappropriate renting of the enterprises' properties to individuals.

They are also accused of abusing power and conducting illegal purchases, which is in violation of the government's procurement regulation.

The suspects were brought before the Dire Dawa Administration Court on Thursday where they were later granted bail. However, The Reporter was not able to substantiate whether the latest arrest of the Dire Dawa Branch office's former officials has any connection with Te'ume Tekie's case.

The Reporter's attempts to get comments of the Dire Dawa station administration was unsuccessful.

It can be recalled that this year in April the commission's police also arrested the former CEO of the Ethio-Djibouti Railway Enterprise, Te'ume Tekie in Dire Dawa red-handed while he was taking a 2000 birr bribe in his hotel room in Dire Dawa.

The Reporter's sources said last April that the reason behind the arrest was related with the Ethio-Djibouti sport (workers) club. The individual who signed a contract and been working on the club has been asking Te'ume for the renewal of his contract since his contact would expire on June 2014.

The Ethio-Djibouti Railway Enterprise manages the services but is struggling to maintain full operations, so workers were handed over to the Metals and Engineering Corporation (MetEC,) which was tasked with wage payments.

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