Agegnehu Teshager (centre), president of the Amhara Regional State, peeks past his counterpart in Oromia Regional State, Shimelis Abdisa, and Yinager Dessie (PhD), governor of the National Bank of Ethiopia (NBE)


Agegnehu Teshager (centre), president of the Amhara Regional State, peeks past his counterpart in Oromia Regional State, Shimelis Abdisa, and Yinager Dessie (PhD), governor of the National Bank of Ethiopia (NBE), at the start of what was a rather testy meeting with Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed (PhD). They gathered at the Office of the Prime Minister to discuss designs and progress on projects in Koysha, Wenchi and Gorgora, in the Southern, Oromia and Amhara regional states.

“Presentations by project leads on proposed designs are promising,” the Prime Minister wrote on his Twitter page.


He was much less content during the meeting, where he criticised the project leaders and regional heads. Echoing his response to parliamentarians, this was not a project to be funded out of the pockets of the federal and regional governments and would have a process of development similar to the projects taking place in Addis Abeba.

The Sheger Beautification project in the capital has been one of the administration’s most principal projects. Aiming to clean rivers and expand public places, part of its funding has come from the Dine for Sheger fundraising gala where each plate cost five million Birr. Projects such as Friendship Square have already been inaugurated.



A similar fundraising dinner, Dine for Nation, would be hosted for these projects to raise three billion Birr. Like the Sheger dinner, commercial banks have pitched in, including the Commercial Bank of Ethiopia, which contributed 1.1 billion Br.

“That your ambitions have grown, that there is an eagerness for development is great,” Abiy said during the meeting. “But desires and capacities need to be harmonised.”


In as far as the Prime Minister was concerned, in the interest of early delivery of the projects, these were federal projects, and intervention by the regional governments is “not needed” or “allowed.”



PUBLISHED ON Dec 19,2020 [ VOL 21 , NO 1077]


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