News / Africa

Ethiopia’s Ruling Party to Work with Opposition

Multimedia

Audio
  • Sekou Toure, a leading member of the ruling Ethiopian People's Revolutionary Democratic Front (EPRDF) spoke with Clottey

Peter Clottey

A leading member of the ruling Ethiopian People's Revolutionary Democratic Front (EPRDF) said Thursday the party will continue to work with all opposition groups to strengthen the country’s growing democracy.

Sekou Toure told VOA most Ethiopians are surprised that the opposition parties are demanding a re-run of Sunday’s election after the electoral board addressed all of their concerns before the vote.

“We have seen the preliminary results and it seems that people are giving us additional five years to do our developmental and democratic activities,” he said.

Ethiopia’s National Electoral Board (NEBE) announced Tuesday that the ruling EPRDF won 499 out of the 547 parliamentary seats. But, two of the largest opposition groups rejected the results and called for a new vote.

EPRDF official Toure said the ruling party will continue with policies aimed at improving the lives of Ethiopians.

“Our program is well crafted to benefit all ranks of our society. We are not only working for the sectors of society who are well-to-do, but we are also committed to work for the masses of the people. Eighty-five percent of the people are living in the rural areas in very poor conditions so we have worked a lot to change this situation in the rural areas,” Toure said.

He also expressed confidence that Ethiopians will extend the mandate of the ruling party in future elections if the government continues with its developmental policies.

Before last weekend’s vote, several opposition parties accused the ruling party of intimidation and harassment calculated to undermine their campaigns ahead of the election.

But, Toure dismissed the accusations as without merit. He said the EPRDF has no policies to stifle the opposition from playing an “important” role in Ethiopia’s fledgling democracy.

“Since the 2005 election, we have worked together with the opposition political parties. We have re-visited the electoral law, we have made progress by creating new parliamentary procedures, where these opposition political parties additional opportunities to express themselves,” Toure said.

Washington said Ethiopia’s election failed to meet international standards. The European Union said, while the vote was peaceful, the electoral process was biased in favor of the ruling party. Human rights groups said the government took steps to ensure it would score a clear victory.

Ethiopia’s Prime Minister Meles Zenawi has urged the international community to respect the ruling party’s victory in last Sunday’s vote.

You May Like

Video One Year After Thai Coup, No End in Sight for Military Rule

Since carrying out the May 22, 2014 coup, the general has retired from the military but is still firmly in charge More

Goodbye, New York

This is what the fastest-growing big cities in America have in common More

Job-Seeking Bangladeshis Risk Lives to Find Work

The number of Bangladeshi migrants on smugglers’ boats bound for Southeast Asian countries has soared in the past two years More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Turkey's Main Opposition Party Hopes for Election Breakthroughi
X
May 22, 2015 10:23 AM
Turkey’s main opposition Republican People’s Party has sought an image change ahead of the June 7 general election. The move comes after suffering successive defeats at the hands of the Islamist-rooted AK Party, which has portrayed it as hostile to religion. Dorian Jones reports from the western city of Izmir.
Video

Video Turkey's Main Opposition Party Hopes for Election Breakthrough

Turkey’s main opposition Republican People’s Party has sought an image change ahead of the June 7 general election. The move comes after suffering successive defeats at the hands of the Islamist-rooted AK Party, which has portrayed it as hostile to religion. Dorian Jones reports from the western city of Izmir.
Video

Video Europe Follows US Lead in Tackling ‘Conflict Minerals’

Metals mined from conflict zones in places like the Democratic Republic of Congo are often sold by warlords to buy weapons. This week European lawmakers voted to force manufacturers to prove that their supply chains are not inadvertently fueling conflicts and human rights abuses. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
Video

Video Class Tackles Questions of Race, Discrimination

Unrest in some U.S. cities is more than just a trending news item at Ladue Middle School in St. Louis, Missouri. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, it’s a focus of a multicultural studies class engaging students in wide-ranging discussions about racial tensions and police aggression.
Video

Video Mind-Controlled Prosthetics Are Getting Closer

Scientists and engineers are making substantial advances towards the ultimate goal in prosthetics – creation of limbs that can be controlled by the wearer’s mind. Thanks to sophisticated sensors capable of picking up the brain’s signals, an amputee in Iceland is literally bringing us one step closer to that goal. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Afghan Economy Sinks As Foreign Troops Depart

As international troops prepare to leave Afghanistan, and many foreign aid groups follow, Afghans are grappling with how the exodus will affect the country's fragile economy. Ayesha Tanzeem reports from the Afghan capital, Kabul.
Video

Video Poverty, Ignorance Force Underage Girls Into Marriage

The recent marriage of a 17-year old Chechen girl to a local police chief who was 30 years older and already had a wife caused an outcry in Russia and beyond. The bride was reportedly forced to marry and her parents were intimidated into giving their consent. The union spotlighted yet again the plight of many underage girls in developing countries. Zlatica Hoke reports poverty, ignorance and fear are behind the practice, especially in Asia and Africa.
Video

Video South Korea Marks Gwangju Uprising Anniversary

South Korea this week marked the 35th anniversary of a protest that turned deadly. The Gwangju Uprising is credited with starting the country’s democratic revolution after it was violently quelled by South Korea’s former military rulers. But as Jason Strother reports, some observers worry that democracy has recently been eroded.
Video

Video California’s Water System Not Created To Handle Current Drought

The drought in California is moving into its fourth year. While the state's governor is mandating a reduction in urban water use, most of the water used in California is for agriculture. But both city dwellers and farmers are feeling the impact of the drought. Some experts say the state’s water system was not created to handle long periods of drought. Elizabeth Lee reports from Ventura County, an agricultural region just northwest of Los Angeles.
Video

Video How to Clone a Mammoth: The Science of De-Extinction

An international team of scientists has sequenced the complete genome of the woolly mammoth. Led by the Swedish Museum of Natural History in Stockholm, the work opens the door to recreate the huge herbivore, which last roamed the Earth 4,000 years ago. VOA’s Rosanne Skirble considers the science of de-extinction and its place on the planet
Video

Video Blind Boy Defines His Life with Music

Cole Moran was born blind. He also has cognitive delays and other birth defects. He has to learn everything by ear. Nevertheless, the 12-year-old has had an insatiable love for music since he was born. VOA’s June Soh introduces us to the young phenomenal harmonica player.

VOA Blogs