19/04/2021

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Funeral held for slain Ethiopian singer

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The funeral of Hachalu Hundessa, the slain Ethiopian singer, was held Thursday in his hometown of Ambo, in the Oromia region.

The singer, whose highly political lyrics expressed frustrations of the Oromo people, who have long considered themselves marginalised, was shot dead Monday night in Addis Ababa.

His death immediately rekindled tensions. Demonstrations resulted in the deaths of 81 people and increased political and communal tensions in the country.

Over the past two days, demonstrators have been expressing their anger in the capital and in Oromia, the stronghold of the Oromo people, the country’s largest ethnic group.

It was a federal government plan to expand the capital into Oromia that triggered the anti-government protests in 2015 that led to Abiy Ahmed’s accession to power three years later.

Since assuming office, the 2019 Nobel Peace Prize winner has worked to promote political and economic reforms.

However, this has opened the way open for inter-communal violence, which is putting the Ethiopian system of ethnic federalism to the test.

AFP