Ethiopia to Strictly Monitor Foreign Trips and Bank Account of Officials

Ethiopia Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed has reiterated his stance on financial transparency in a meeting with top government appointees including members of the cabinet on Tuesday 15 May. The meeting was aimed at finding ways through which officials could deliver results and respond public demands.

Abiy stressed that the historic transition of democratic power in early April had set fertile grounds for more changes.

Foreign trips of officials and their destinations are going to be strictly monitored as a means to improve accountability. Foreign bank accounts of government officials are also under investigation.

The Premier mentioned that there are officials who travelled abroad more than 10 times within a year unnecessarily. In addition to the excess travel, there are also officials who stop over to visit some places other than their original destinations.

These make the implementation of strong monitoring mechanisms necessary to save the country’s resource.

Unnecessary travels of government officials will be cancelled in order to save time and cost alongside ensuring transparency and accountability.

Regarding the investigation on foreign bank accounts of officials, Abiy said: “investigation is being conducted on foreign bank accounts of government officials to ensure accountability and transparency”.

He said countries are collaborating with the Ethiopian government in the investigation. The premier pledges to disclose the result as soon as the investigation completed.

The premier is also said to have moved weekly cabinet meeting to Saturday from Friday as part of a move to avoid waste of time during a working day.

In his inaugural speech to the House of Peoples’ Representatives in April, Abiy pledged to fight corruption, which is among the causes that galvanized the grievances of the people in recent years.

He stated during the time “We have come to learn that it is impossible to combat corruption by merely establishing anti-corruption institutions. I politely ask all of us to do all we can to ensure that Ethiopia won’t become a country where one works hard and the other simply snatch it away”.

He also said that it is impossible for a people and a country that are busy taking away the created wealth to reach the desired level of development.

“Rather, let us busy ourselves with utilising the unique opportunities presented to us by the circumstances, coordinating our national capacity, and overcoming our scarcity and shortage mindset,” he said.