ADDIS ABABA- Ethiopia is well prepared for second filling of the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD),President Sahlework Zewde said.
GERD is a source of pride for the people of Ethiopia and it has enormous benefit to the national economy, stated Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Demeke Mekonnen.
Both made the remarks yesterday in their congratulatory message to the people of Ethiopia in connection with the 10th anniversary of the commencement of the GERD.
The President stated that Ethiopia's waters are among the major natural resources the country has been endowed with, and are pillars of its development endeavors. Accordingly, Nile and its tributaries have immense potentials for Ethiopia's ongoing economic reform.
"We have achieved first round filling of GERD after overcoming ups and downs ."
She further said that Ethiopia failed to utilize River Abay (Nile) and other natural resources for economic purpose for many years including limited economic potentials and regional and international circumstances.
Sahle-Work highlighted that GERD is a historic project of all Ethiopians and the public have been supporting the building of the dam financially, professionally and in other ways. "GERD is a foundation stone to overcome poverty and transform the livelihoods of our citizens."
Similarly, Demek esaid that the GERD is one of the pillars that will lay the foundation for Ethiopia's development.
"We Ethiopians laid the foundation stone for the dam on our Abay (Nile) River ten years ago and we have mobilized our money, knowledge, energy and other resources and we are approaching to the current final stage of the construction."
The Deputy Premier indicated that the completion of the dam will significantly enhance Ethiopia's electricity generation and supply capacity. The dam under construction by Ethiopia is also meant to benefit Nile lower riparian countries and integrate the region via electricity interconnection.
Noting the widespread expressions of interests and concerns about the impact of the dam during the past ten years of construction, Demeke said that efforts have been made to build transparency and consensus among the concerned bodies.
He also expressed his appreciation for the overwhelming support Ethiopians in home and abroad has demonstrated since the inception the mega dam. "History will never forget the financial and moral support of Ethiopians at home and in Diaspora from the day the foundation stone of the dam was laid."
Ethiopians need to continue their support for the successful implementation of the rest of the project as Ethiopia is at a historic moment that needs the unity of its people more than ever with a view to ensuring the sovereignty of the nation, the Deputy Premier stated.