25 June 2018

Ethiopia: House Speaker Muferihat Kamil Replaces Shiferaw Shigute As SEPDM Chairman

Muferihat Kamil, Speaker of the House of People's Representative, become the first female chairman of the Southern Ethiopian People's Democratic Movement (SEPDM), a coalition party of the ruling EPRDF representing of the southern regional state. Muferihat election by the executive of the party during an emergency meeting today comes after Shiferaw Shigute, the newly elected chairman of the Southern Ethiopian People's Democratic Movement (SEPDM), has resigned both from his chairmanship & executive. In a statement sent to Addis Standard, SEPDM said Shiferaw's resignation was accepted by the party's ongoing emergency meeting of the executive committee.It also said the emergency meeting has just elected Muferihat in his place.

Muferihat is one of the newly rising politicians within the EPRDF rank and file after her election as the house speaker replacing the outgoing Abadulla Gemeda. Just like her chairmanship, Muferihat became the first female house speakers in the current parliament.

The outgoing Shiferaw Shigute will continue being a member of the party's central committee. He will also continue being the federal minister for Agriculture & Livestock Resources, a position he assumed during the April 19 cabinet reshuffle by Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed.

Shiferaw, who was also the ruling EPRDF's secretariat until recently, was the deputy chairman of SEPDM at the time when the former PM Hailemariam Desalegn was the chairman. He was elected into the chairman position following Hailemariam's resignation.His election left his party deeply devided between those who expected him to resign along with Hailemariam Desalegn and those who supported hid bid.

His resignation comes at the backdrop of PM #AbiyAhmed's call for resignation of senior officials of the various zonal administrations in the southern regional state, where a recent spate of ethnic attack against #Welayita's left more than a dozen & displaced thousands

Victims of the ethnic attack in #Hawassa city & beyond have directly implicated senior officials of the region, including security apparatus, for failing to protect them during days of ethnic targeted attack. SEPDM said Shifraw's resignation is in response to the party's reform agenda and in response to failing to protect the ethnic attack the Welayita ethnic group. AS

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