Indian Ocean Newsletter| TPLF factions bury the hatchet

Editor’s note: Since the passing of the late Prime Minister of Ethiopia, Meles Zenawi, on August 20, 2012, 11:20pm (Addis Ababa time), many speculated of in-fighting withing the ruling party EPRDF and its members parties, esp. TPLF. Those speculations may not be baseless.

Some continue to expect severe in-fighting even 18 months past those critical moments. Despite the calm, any well-informed Ethiopian pundit would be wary of disregarding any speculation, as the 2001 intra-party dispute of TPLF, then of EPRDF, came at a surprise. And also given the highly secretive nature of the party.

Therefore, we deem it appropriate to share the latest update from the Indian Ocoan Newsletter, which is presumed to be tipped by the French intelligence agency, yet know for its hit-and-miss stories.

Read below Indian Ocean Newsletter’s January 30, 2014 news:

A former advisor to the late Prime Minister Meles Zenai and ex-member of the central committee of the Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF) Bitew Belay has acted, according to our sources, as an intermediary between the two TPLF factions, the Mekelle group and the Addis Ababa group.

Belay was sacked and indicted for corruption in 2001 during the purge against Seye Abraha and TPLF dissidents. He has now moved into the world of business.

Like many other former TPLF leaders, he fears that internal dissent in the party could lead to diluting its hold on Ethiopian politics and administration. Because of its internal divisions, the Mekelle group led by the president of the TPLF and the Tigray Regional State, Abay Woldu, had to make concessions to the Addis Ababa faction headed by Debretsion Gebremichael, the current Deputy Prime Minister.

The two factions have now decided to put quarrels behind them and join forces so that the next prime minister in 2017 could be a member of the TPLF, or at least a Tigryan.


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