The Ethiopian government says the recently imposed six-month state of emergency has created a peaceful environment for investment and other business activities to get back on track.
According to the minister of information,Getachew Reda, the curfew had effectively removed the deadly threats with security and stability being restored in many parts of country.
In an address to the media with details on the state of emergency, he said the Command Post established to enforce it were also working hard at retrieving all arms that were in the hands of civilians.
“In many cases the security forces under the Command Post have also been stepping up their effort to make sure that individuals who have been responsible for the killings or destruction of properties are accounted for.”
The minister however conceded that a lot remained to be done in terms of ensuring stability. He also reaffirmed that actors in the killings and destruction of properties were handing themselves in and that such people could benefit from an amnesty program by government.
The Ethiopian government declared the state of emergency to quell anti-government protests in the Oromia region. A series of renewed attacks on public and private property followed deaths of over 50 people during a festival in the town of Bishoftu.
Opposition elements and some rights groups claim a security clampdown led to the death whiles the government insists that the deaths were as a result of a stampede and people drowning.
Opening the democratic space
Getachew confirmed the government’s will to further widen the political space as has been promised by the Prime Minister and the president in the wake of the protests.
“We have to make sure that people’s voices are fully represented in the parliament and we will do what it takes to make sure that representation is there [in parliament],” he added.
Political dialogue is seen by as the way forward in the current crisis. The government has maintained that the state of emergency is only a short term measure to address issues of law enforcement.