Ethiopia to hold parliamentary elections on August 29

Friday February 14 2020

Ethiopia's Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed.

Ethiopia's Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed. Ethiopia will hold parliamentary elections on August 29. PHOTO | FILE | NATION MEDIA GROUP 

REUTERS
By REUTERS
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Addis Ababa,

Ethiopia’s election body on Friday set a date for free parliamentary elections.

The election will be a first test of voter support for Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed, who has eased political restrictions since he took office in 2018.

The August 29 election date is two weeks later than the electoral board had previously indicated. It did not immediately give a reason for the delay.

Ethiopia’s 109 million people are experiencing unprecedented political and economic change, but Abiy’s reforms have also unleashed ethnic rivalries that have spilled into violence.

Plans to hold the parliament and regional council elections in May were postponed as neither the authorities nor parties would be ready, electoral board head Birtukan Mideksa said in January.

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Ethiopia has had regular parliamentary elections since the Ethiopian People’s Revolutionary Democratic Front (EPRDF) took power in 1991 but, with one exception, none were competitive.

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