Ethiopia: Federal System Effective Despite Limitations, Says Federal, Pastoral Affairs State Minister

The federal system has made significant gains in the past years though there are limitations in implementing some principles, Federal and Pastoral Affairs State Minister Mulugeta Wuletaw said.

According to him, balancing between ethnic identity and citizenship is very crucial for peaceful coexistence among the peoples of Ethiopia.

A discussion forum under the theme "Building Ethiopian federalism and democratic unity: Opportunities and Challenges" was held at Hilton Hotel today.

In a research he presented to the forum, Federalism instructor at Addis Ababa University, Dr. Assefa Fiseha, said the challenge the country has been facing in the past three years is an alarming sign of overemphasis on ethno-nationalism.

Overemphasis on ethno-nationalism will lead to ethnic, language or religious conflicts that are signs of political crisis in the political system, he elaborated.

According to him, border related conflicts, harming minority groups and damaging properties in different regions of the country and the problems in some universities were symptoms of political illness related to ethno-nationalism.

Institutional decision-making capacity was not effective in addressing the political unrest of the country in the last three years, according to Dr. Assefa.

The scholar said strengthening federal institutions and inter-regional and federal relationship are needed to address the challenges of the federal system in the country.

Stakeholders should also work to insure strong national unity along with keeping the identity rights of nations, nationalities and peoples to overcome the challenges faced in the federal system, the scholar stated.

The forum was organized by Amhara Mass Media Agency and Ministry of Federal and Pastoral Affairs.

Representatives of political parties, religious leaders and community members participated in the one-day discussion forum.

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