Hot Issue: Civilians in Metekel, Benishangul, should be equipped to protect themselves, Deputy PM DEMEKE MEKONNEN

Addis Abeba, October 14/2020 – After communicating despise at the killings in Metekel Zone, Delegate Prime Serve Demeke Mekonnen expressed that civilians must be empowered to “defend themselves” against the proceeded assaults. He said that “there is no other option” for the local people other than “organizing and outfitting themselves” to construct a solid defense. In a dialog with the Zone’s administration and the Zone’s Command Post within the Metekel, Benishangul Gumuz, the appointee PM discussed the current circumstance within the zone and laid out the endeavors being made in collaboration with the community to resolve the security issues within the region.

A report that summarized the challenges the Zone’s Command Post is facing was presented in the discussion. The deputy PM encouraged the efforts made to prosecute criminals and the measures taken on those who did not fulfill their responsibilities. The report made a point of the crucial need to maintain a strong rule of law in order to ensure peace and security in this area. Deputy PM Demeke strongly condemned the killing of civilians in the Metekel Zone, describing it as a “tragic and heartbreaking” incident. He wished condolences to the families and friends of those who lost their lives. In addition, the leadership of the command post urged the quick implementation of the post’s plan in all areas for the public to resume its everyday life by building trust among one another.

As soon as the discussions were over, a community-based military training began being provided in Debati Wereda to address the ongoing security crisis in the Metekel Zone. The training is believed to ensure lasting peace according to the Chief Administrator of Debati Wereda, Debeli Belgafo. He said that the training will help the community defend itself from crime and stand alongside security forces in the fight against “counteragents of peace”.

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