BY BETELHEM BEDLU
ADDIS ABABA– The government of Ethiopia has refuted the “investigation” that the USAID and WFP that blame the government for food aid diversion pointing lack of inclusivity in the process.
Briefing journalist yesterday, the Government Communication Service Minister Legesse Tulu (PhD) stated that the USAID has made continuous efforts to defame the Ethiopian government, its National Defense Force, and regional governments in its frequent statements and reports.
Noting bring violators of law to court justice is one of the pillars of the ongoing reform; Largesse indicated the government has assigned investigation team that is assessing the food aid diversion allegation. The two agencies conducted the investigation without the involvement of government officials at any level.
“Areas where the investigation are said to be conducted are under the full supervision of the charity organizations. Even if there were perpetrators, holding the perpetrators accountable together is a right thing to do.”
The minister called on those groups that want to carry out further investigation in the issue to partner with relevant officials to come up with fair and accurate report. “The two organizations need to take into account that their decision to halt the food aid will leave countless people for further misery and escalate the humanitarian crisis. Hence, we urge them to revise their decision.”
Also, harming the people in need not only contradicts with international principles, but the Ethiopian government will not accept it. “In this regard, concerned bodies and international partners should discharge their responsibilities to protect people in need from further harm.”
The government of Ethiopia is committed to hold individuals, who have been involved in food diversion based on adequate evidence, the minister emphasized.
THE ETHIOPIAN HERALD SUNDAY EDITION 11 JUNE 2023