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The only safe exit for Abiy Ahmed is to use the election as a face saving and relinquish power

Tigrai Online Feb. 11, 2020

Safe exit for Abiy Ahmed is to use the 2020 election as a face saving
The only safe exit for Abiy Ahmed and to save Ethiopia is to use the 2020 election as a face saving event and step down from power.

The 2020 Ethiopian election is approaching fast and Abiy Ahmed ready to declare victory by any means necessary. Despite all the preparation by Abiy Ahmed and his masters, almost all political analysts who know about Ethiopia say the 2020 Ethiopian election certainly will be catastrophic. 

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Ethiopian politics has never been fragmented like this in the history of the country except in the era of the princes. Ethiopia is being torn apart because of ethnic, religious, social political tensions. The country is awash with illegal arms and all states and regions are armed to the teeth. The Ethiopian central government is limited to the capital Addis Ababa even that is fully under the control of the central government. Abiy Ahmed destroyed Ethiopia’s defense and security apparatus when he came to power the first time. 

The Ethiopian 2020 election is scheduled to take place under the above-mentioned circumstances. There are about sixty national and regional political parties ready to take part in the 2020 Ethiopian election and most of them are ready to challenge Abiy Ahmed’s Prosperity party. In some of the Ethiopian regional states Abiy Ahmed’s party may not get more than hundred votes. For example, in Tigrai and Oromia state where there is unprecedented opposition to Abiy Ahmed and absolute rejection to his Prosperity party, Abiy Ahmed and his party may get extremely low votes. In the rest of the country the chance of getting significant number of votes for Abiy Ahmed is very low. All in all, Abiy Ahmed and his party might get about 15% of the total national votes which will be not enough to form a government. The votes might be across ethnic and regional lines which will deny any of the Ethiopian political parties overwhelming votes to form a national government. 

The main concerning point regarding the 2020 Ethiopian election is if it will be peaceful. As mentioned above some of the reginal states and cities might be highly contested example Addis Ababa, Dire Dawa and other heavily mixed areas might see election related violence. Most political analysts are predicting election related conflict in Addis Ababa between the two groups claiming the city as their own. The other place that might see election conflict even fighting is Oromia state. The Oromia election conflict would be between the Abiy Ahmed regime and the opposing Oromo groups. As reported in Ethiopian and international news medias there is an active military conflict between the Abiy government and the OLF military factions in western Oromia. 

The biggest problem that would arise related to the Ethiopian 2020 election is if Abiy Ahmed tried to cheat the election. If Abiy Ahmed Ali declares himself as a winner where in reality he doesn’t have a chance to win the election, what would the rest of the national and regional parties do? The fear is the other parties and forces would challenge Abiy Ahmed directly, they might even try to force him to step down from power and if he refuses to step down it might lead to a military conflict. If all Ethiopians and international community are not careful the conflict might lead to Ethiopia’s break down. 

only safe exit for Abiy Ahmed and those who are behind him is to use the election as a face-saving event and relinquish power. We think the 2020 election an important opportunity for Abiy Ahmed to announce he has lost the election and he is not the prime minister of Ethiopia any more. Abiy Ahmed’s chance to safely get out of the quagmire he is in and save Ethiopia from a certain disaster is the 2020 election.