[dehai-news] (ION) The Meles Family and Corrupion

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From: Biniam Haile \(SWE\) (eritrea.lave@comhem.se)
Date: Sun Jan 18 2009 - 23:25:02 EST

 The Meles Family & Corruption

Now that the EPRDF has been in power for almost two decades, its leaders
have had time to accumulate wealth. We make a roundup - by no means
exhaustive - of their activity.
Azeb Mesfin, the wife of Prime Minister Meles Zenawi, takes no mean
interest in the world of business and sometimes has been highly
interventionist in defending the commercial interests of those close to
her. She recently put the spoke in the wheels of the firm Nyala Motors
over the importing of UD Nissan lorries; conversely she has lobbied in
favour of Sunshine Construction whose executives Samuel Tadesse and
Fetlework Elala are close to her. Moreover, Azeb Mesfin is believed to
have a stake in Alfa University College and in property in Addis Ababa.
The Minister for Foreign Affairs, Seyoum Mesfin, is for his part at the
head of a unit producing ceramics for the construction industry. It is
winning all of the contracts, to such an extent that it has pushed some
of its rivals to close down. Asefaw Yirga, the manager of Ase Marble, is
believed to be one of them. He committed suicide on 20 December. Seyoum
Mesfin also owns several tens of lorries registered in his name. Addisu
Legese, the Deputy Prime Minister currently on the way out, owns a hotel
at Bahr Dar, which is the stopping place for all the officials visiting
this town. The State Minister for Public Works, Arkebe Oqubay Mitiku,
owns two buildings in the capital, while one advisor to the Prime
Minister, Bereket Simon, owns a rental building and a fleet of lorries
transporting oil products from Djibouti. The Police Commissioner
Workineh Gebreyehu is at the head of an import-export company which has
no difficulty in getting foreign currency when it needs it. A band of
generals is very active in the property market, buying and selling
villas and plots of land, beginning with the army chief of staff,
General Samora Younis, who owns a building in the smart neighbourhood of
The Ethiopian government recently attributed plots of land in Addis
Ababa together with money for building, to some generals, mainly
Tigrayans. Samora Younis, Yohannes Gebre Meskel and a few others are
among the lucky beneficiaries of this scheme.


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