Ethiopia: City's Development Activities - Serving Low-Income Citizens' Interests

Following the reform, Addis Ababa City Administration has been undertaking various development activities particularly paying attention towards fair and inclusive development to address the real questions of the low-income society apart from investing on mega projects, dweller and economist said.

For long time, fair distribution of resources and inclusive development are among the hot political question in the metropolis and across the country. A bread winner of nine family members, Bekele Tegegne is living in Arada Sub-City Woreda 02 Administration.

He used to lead his life in house-rent with only 1,700 monthly incomes. Since it was difficult to live in a house-rent with all his family, he was forced to share some of his children with close relatives, though it was tough for him to live in separation with his children, he told The Ethiopian Herald.

He had been known as the poorer of the poor since 2009 by the previous administration, but he said "The pre- reform administration's corrupted system excluded me to find support from the government." "With 1,700 monthly salary, it was difficult to cover household's consumption, to pay house rent, covering uniform and other schooling needs of my children," he added.

"Thanks to the current administration that sees citizens fairly, I got a house and I am living with all my children under one roof," Bekele said adding that "My children's uniform, bags and shoes have been covered by the city administration and my children are also beneficiaries of school feeding."

Bekele said: "The hardships related to housing have now gone and I have started new life." Bekelle and thousands of low-income residents, including his neighbors, have secured low- rent state owned houses by the decision of the city administration.

"The school feeding program helps hundreds of thousands of school children like mine," he said adding that "If you want to understand the benefit of the school feeding, ask a single household's story like mine and you would deeply understand how it changes lives of citizens." The uniform, hand-book, school feeding, cloths supports are immediate supports for the immediate needs of the poorer of the poor in the city.

Last week City Deputy Mayor, Adanech Abiebie stated that over 2000 existing and new projects including parks, roads, schools, entertainment and sport venues have been inaugurated in the capital only this Ethiopian fiscal year. According to her, these projects are all inclusive and serve all dwellers of the city, including the low-income society.

Approached by The Ethiopian Herald, Wasihun Belay, Economist stated that the reform brings dramatic change in projects management and timely completion of public projects across the country. Wasihun said Addis Ababa is now showing promising changes in making the development inclusive and fair.

The economist stated that Addis Ababa's mega projects are new blessings for the development of the city and its all citizens, parallel to that the activities of the city to support low-income citizens is another gift of the reform.

For him fair, equitable and inclusive development had been the long held demand of the people before the reform, now there are promising reforms in this regard and Addis Ababa's activities are exemplary in this regard. Still, a lot remains to do in supporting the low income society since the inequality has been there for long time, he said. The city administration's efforts in making the city projects inclusive is promising and exemplary, yet it needs further efforts and additional interventions.


More From: Ethiopian Herald

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