Hailemariam Desalegn’s BBC Interview, Fraudulent Accomplice of Tyranny

NOVEMBER 15, 2015 | 

No matter how much the BBC and other media prop the Ethiopian government through their sham, fraudulent and misleading reporting, and no matter how much they try to sanitize its crimes, they cannot save it at the end of the day from its people. “He that troubleth his own house shall inherit the wind.”

By Amanuel Biedemariam,

During an interview with the BBC World Service, Prime Minister Hailemariam Desalegn of Ethiopia made some outlandish statements about Eritrea’s national service and migration among a host of issues that he touched upon poorly. There is nothing that surprises the people of Ethiopia and the region about the inept and embarrassing regime.

The only surprise here is the British authorities, EU, US insistence to present the TPLF EPRDF clique as legitimate representatives of the people contrary to facts on the ground. It is in stark contrast to public sentiments, denial of the constant breach of the rule of law, and glossing over the crimes against humanity perpetrated by TPLF thugs that have terrorized the region for decades. 

In the name of famine, fighting terror, and stemming the flow of migrants from Africa to Europe, the UK, EU, and the US are on a full-fledged campaign to resurrect the dying TPLF regime. They are giving them millions to help save them. These include famine relief that the USAID gave Ethiopia to the tune of $246 Million in food assistance while Ethiopian authorities deny famine’s existence.

The BBC, Chatham House, House of Lords, and the other institutions’ are party to this misguided strategy. They spew outright lies, exaggerations, and complete misrepresentations of the facts to their constituencies and the international community to sell false narratives.

On October 23, 2015, Chatham House (CH) invited Foreign Minister Dr. Tedros Adhanom to “Reflect on Ethiopia’s priorities for regional stability, integration and development, and wider international relations.” Chatham House presented Adhanom’s Ethiopia as,

“Growing to dominate the Horn of Africa in both demographic and economic terms. The government plans for growth, fueled by infrastructural development and increasing exports of electricity to its neighbors, to propel the country towards middle-income status by 2025.”

To the average European, all the expectations and rosy outlook presented by Dr. Adhanom are welcome and appealing news. However, the reality on the ground is different. The rosy statements mean nothing to the people of Ethiopia because they directed it at the donor countries and for western audience consumption. They produce it for those who could further the agendas and promote the cause. These include celebrities and so-called humanitarian organizations that have stolen the voices of the people in Africa because they are the perfect agents to sway the opinions of the unassuming public.

The history of the UK’s involvement in Africa to help countries out of poverty has been nothing short of sham and gimmick. In 2012, the US, EU, and the UK launched an initiative to mobilize private capital for investment in African agriculture under the guise of the “New Alliance for Food Security and Nutrition.”

In June of 2013, the UK hosted a summit, “Nutrition for Growth,” which expanded to the G8 Summit as a significant global plan, and they promoted it heavily by singers Bono and Bob Geldof at the UN and around the world. At the time George Monbiot of the Guardian penned,

“The New Alliance for Food Security and Nutrition, which bears only a passing relationship to the agreements arising from the Conference of Berlin, will, according to the US agency promoting it, “lift 50 million people out of poverty over the next 10 years through inclusive and sustained agricultural growth”. This “inclusive and sustained agricultural growth” will no longer be in the hands of the people who are meant to be lifted out of poverty. How you can have one without the other is a mystery that has yet to be decoded. But I’m sure the alliance’s corporate partners – Monsanto, Cargill, Dupont, Syngenta, Nestlé, Unilever, Itochu, Yara International, and others – could produce some interesting explanations.”

This quote gets into the heart of the authors’ point: African and particular Ethiopian agendas promoted by the UK, EU, and the US are not meant to deliver what they promise. On the contrary, they damage the long-term viability and subject these countries to sustained poverty, hardship and starvation.

Over 12 years since the “lift 50 million people out of poverty over the next ten years” summit. What is the state of an economic state of Ethiopia today?

According to USAID, “8.2 million Ethiopians need emergency food aid, and that figure could rise to 15 million” if the international community failed to act.

Why then are the BBC, Chatham House, and the House of commons propping the regime by glossing over real crimes against humanity perpetrated by the genocidal clique undermining international laws and destroying lives of innocent civilians source of significant instability in the region as saviors and examples of success?

Why are they lying to the people of the UK and not exposing the true nature of the Ethiopian regime that is a source of the significant flow of refugees to Europe? Why focus on Eritrea when the minority regime has divided Ethiopia along ethnic and regional fault-lines that could tear the nation apart and create a major humanitarian crisis for years to come?  Why the lies about Ethiopia becoming a middle-income country by 2025 when the TPLF is selling Ethiopian farmland in chunks to foreign interests, forcibly evicting the inhabitants? Why is forcibly displacing millions of indigenous inhabitants in various Ethiopia not considered a cause for human flight?

In 2013 Saudi authorities deported over 130,000 Ethiopians that illegally entered their territories. In April 2015,  angry Ethiopians in the Diaspora demonstrated by the lack of effort by Ethiopian authorities that failed to help over 50 000 Ethiopian refugees stranded in Yemen.

Ethiopian authorities deny that Ethiopia is a significant source of refugees that flee to Europe and other Western nations. Ethiopians are fleeing desperate conditions and persecution. Ironically thousands are escaping to Eritrea. Hundreds of thousands of Ethiopians are in Eastern Sudan, and thousands are facing horrific situations in Libya in their quest to cross over to Europe. However, the plight of these refugees means nothing because the UK and partners have decided that it does not address their interests. Instead, they deflect by pointing fingers at Eritrea because they want to do a regime change as they have done in Libya, Syria, Iraq, etc.

It is concerning to see institutions like the BBC foreign services that are funded by the people and the government failing to hold the Prime Minister of Ethiopia Haile Mariam Desalengn for lying to the British public.

“The second-largest flow of refugees into Europe is from Eritrea.”

It is factually incorrect because according to a 2014 UN report quoted by Washington Post Griff Witte, June 18, 2015,

“The four-year-old war in Syria has been the single biggest driver of the surging numbers. Last year, 1 in 5 displaced persons worldwide was Syrian. The country in 2014 became the planet’s largest source of refugees, displacing ­Afghanistan, which had held that dubious distinction for three decades.”

During the November 6 BBC interview, the host was leading Hailemariam to the size of Eritrean refugees coming into Ethiopia. It indicates that the BBC is on the agenda of propagating Ethiopia as a host nation for refugees flowing to the Mediterranean Sea.

It attempts to make a case for Ethiopia as deserving of funds that the EU is due to allocate as an emergency fund to aid source nations. However, this is a misguided policy that will exacerbate the corruption in Ethiopia and further escalate the human exodus.

Furthermore, on its print section, the BBC took it a step further by sanitizing what Hailemariam Desalegn said by replacing it with the following transcript,

“Eritreans are among the largest groups of people trying to get into Europe, along with Syrians, Afghans, and Iraqis.”

Hailemariam did not mention Afghans and Iraqis, yet the BBC took the liberty to adjust the statement fully aware of what Hailemariam said was wrong and deliberately corrected it and misled its followers.


The West has been speaking past the African people, the actual victims of the Western agendas. While at the same time funding and propping illegitimate governments such as the one in Ethiopia. The price is heftier as a result. And yet no accountability.

Africa could not expect a good outcome from the EU, US, UK, or other foreign entities. No real progress can occur so long as conflicts are encouraged and undermine the rule of law. The Eritrea Ethiopia border ruling that the TPLF disregarded for over a decade is a good example.

However, no matter how much they prop the minority clique in Ethiopia, no matter how much they try to sanitize its crimes and keep it afloat, they cannot save it from the people. Furthermore, this proves that it is high time for Africans to expose the sham, fraudulent, misleading reporting by the BBC and the like and look inward for solutions to their problems.

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