Radar | May 23,2021
October 3 , 2020
By MICHAEL GETASETEGNE
Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed (PhD) has sacked Solomon Belay (PhD), the director-general of the Ethiopian Space Science & Technology Institute, effective September 29, 2020. Abdissa Yilma, who was his deputy, has replaced him.
Solomon, who holds first and second degrees in physics and astrophysics from Asmara and Addis Abeba universities, respectively, and a PhD from Gutenberg, Sweden, in collaboration with Addis Abeba University, has been serving the Institute since its formation in 2016. He was appointed by former Prime Minister Hailemariam Desalegn.
“The premier’s decision was unexpected,” Solomon told Fortune. "I'm non-partisan and a member of no political party, and I have a plan to request clarification on the reasons for my removal."
Abdissa, who was the founding deputy of the Institute, received the appointment letter on September 28, 2020, a day before Solomon was informed about his removal.
Abdissa earned his first degree in physics from Dilla University and a second degree in technology management from Seoul National University, where he is currently pursuing his PhD. Before joining the Institute, Abdissa served at the then Science & Technology Ministry as an advisor to the minister for five and a half years. Yeshurun Alemayehu (PhD) took over the deputy director-general position at the Institute, which has 140 employees.
"I'm among those who established the Institute," said Solomon, mentioning his achievements during his tenure. "I don't have any regrets."
At the end of last month, the Ministry of Finance wrote a letter to the Institute, mentioning an alleged impediment on the housing allowance granted to higher level officials. The Institute pays 18,000 Br as a monthly housing allowance for higher level officials who are not provided with houses.
"However, the Institute has been paying the allowance for the higher [level] officials who received houses from the Institute, paying 400 Br a month since 2018," reads the letter.
The letter also explains that the officials have been living at a housing unit located at Bole Arabsa area under the possession of the Institute and later at a housing unit purchased by the Institute for 2.9 million Br eight months ago.
"The housing allowance should be stopped," reads the letter, "and the money paid for the officials after the housing unit is bought should be returned."
The Institute, which reports to the Ministry of Innovation & Technology, has a Space Science & Technology Council that is chaired by the Prime Minister. Members of the Council are appointed by the Prime Minister, and the Minister of Innovation & Technology serves as the secretary of the Council.
The Institute administers Entoto Observatory & Space Science Research Centre, which is mandated to lead research and training in astronomy and astrophysics, space science, earth observation and satellite science.
The Centre focuses on research and postgraduate training for master's and doctoral degree programmes. Since its establishment in 2014, the Centre has graduated 13 students with PhDs and 21 master's degrees from its observatory and Research Centre atop Entoto Mountain, north of the capital.
Last December, the Institute launched its first remote sensing satellite from Taiyuan Satellite Launch Centre in Xinzhou, Shanxi Province, China. The Institute has a plan to launch the second satellite before the end of this year.
The lifetime of the satellite mainly depends on space turbulence, but the unit was designed for three years. Space turbulence, also known as plasma turbulence, results from disturbances resembling waves that run along a stretched piece of string, according to the outgoing director.
PUBLISHED ON Oct 03,2020 [ VOL 21 , NO 1066]
Radar | May 23,2021
Fortune News | Apr 22,2022
Radar | Nov 14,2020
Fortune News | Mar 05,2020
Fortune News | Nov 14,2020
Radar | Aug 01,2020
Films Review | Jul 10,2020
Radar | Apr 22,2022
Fortune News | Jun 15,2019
Radar | Apr 26,2019
November 27 , 2021
Against my will, I have witnessed the most terrible defeat of reason and the most sa...
November 13 , 2021
Plans and reality do not always gel. They rarely do in a fast-moving world. Every act...
October 16 , 2021 . By HAWI DADHI
Residing in a country with no capital market, an organised marketplace for trading se...
August 28 , 2021 . By HAWI DADHI
The streets of Addis Abeba are as varied as they are many, although too many of them have yet to be named. From the narrow alleyways of the...
Leaders of the National Election Board are in a charm offensive mood, of a sort. Last week, they organised a rare tour for members of the me...
When the country’s most senior diplomats and envoys return back to their posts after two-week debriefings, they leave behind a point or tw...
May 21 , 2022
There was a great deal of handshaking and patting each other on the back at the Hyatt...
May 14 , 2022
Diana Yohannes is one of those actively engaging in social media platforms with her T...
May 7 , 2022
The Ethiopian Economic Association (EEA) recently proposed the formation of a macroec...
April 30 , 2022
There is no ambiguity in the UNDP's assessment of Ethiopia’s economic performance a...
PM Abiy Ahmed (PhD) at a Gala Dinner Called for the Awarding of the Félix Houphouët-Boigny Peace Prize
May 6 , 2019
Adulteration is getting out of hand. Consumers in Ethiopia are being left to their ow...
Or see contact page