Three founding member parties and five affiliate political parties of the Ethiopian Peoples Revolutionary Democratic Front (EPRDF) have signed agreement to join the Prosperity Party that was established recently to succeed the ruling party, EPRDF.
Signing the agreement were chairs of the Oromo Democratic Party (ODP), Dr. Abiy Ahmed, the Amhara Democratic Party (ADP), Demeke Mekonnen, the South Peoples Democratic Movement (SPDM), Muferiat Kemil, and leaders of five affiliate parties in Addis Ababa.
The agreement comes after the eight political parties approved to join the Prosperity Party during their emergency meetings held in the previous days.
In addition to the three core members of the EPRDF, the five affiliate parties who signed the formation document include the Afar National Democratic Party (ANDP), Benishangul-Gumuz Democratic Party (BDP), Somali Democratic Party (SDP), Gambela Peoples Democratic Movement (GPDM), and Harari National League (HNL).
The Tigrayan People’s Liberation Front (TPLF), one of the founding members of the EPRDF, did not attend the signing ceremony. As reported before, the TPLF has said that it will consult with its members and the Tigrayan people before making any decision on the Prosperity Party.
Speaking on the occasion, Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed said the Prosperity Party will serve as a springboard to transform Ethiopia, using knowledge and truth as guiding principles.
The Prosperity Party will welcome any political party that wants to join and any constructive comments if any to amend its programs, Abiy said
“What differentiates the Prosperity Party from EPRDF is that the later believes its programs are irreplaceable, but the former believes the opposite and is ready to learn,” he added.
EPRDF suffered illness and has been in a coma for a few years. It is unfit to govern and has not been in a position to transform the nation, Abiy added.
The program and bylaws of the Prosperity Party were also revealed at the event which was attended by ministers and high-level government officials.
The premier is confident that the Prosperity Party will usher development and democracy to the people of Ethiopia.
According to the Prime Minister, the new party’s program has been upgraded time and again and can be used equally to all peoples of Ethiopia.
The premier said the PP will not create a unitary government but strengthen federal systems. It respects people and their languages, believes in equality and empowerment of women as well as the participation of all parties.
Even though mere wishes and vague outlook by some groups and individuals remain to be challenging, no force would stop Ethiopia from the path of prosperity, Abiy added.
You can watch the full speech of Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed following the Prosperity Party signing ceremony.
Meanwhile, the Council of Ministers, in its 76th regular session held on Saturday, approved the draft bills forwarded to it to amend the investment, privatization and excise tax laws.
According to a statement released by the Council, it first discussed the draft investment law which aims to accelerate economic development and sustain growth by enhancing the role and encouraging the private sector.
The bill drafted by the Ethiopian Investment Commission (EIC) also, among others, targets expediting economic competitiveness, export diversification and creating more employment opportunities.
After an in-depth discussion, the Council referred the draft law to the House of Peoples’ Representatives (HPR) for approval.