Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed has reached an agreement with several hundred members of the special defence forces assigned to control the recent conflict around Addis Ababa who marched to his office to demand pay rises on Wednesday 10 October.
Members of the army claimed that officers at various levels could not address their grievances about the low allowances and benefits they receive. The purpose of the march to the Prime Minister’s Office was to appeal to Abiy Ahmed.
The premier, who stated that their demand was appropriate, noted that it would be addressed after a study of similar complaints of other civil servants such as teachers and medical professionals.
The meeting between the soldiers and Abiy ended with an agreement.
In addition to asking for pay rises, the soldiers also requested that Abiy “review the structure and operations of the military”.
On this occasion, PM Abiy Ahmed, a former military man himself, did ten press ups with some of the elite soldiers who’d marched to his office calling for a pay rise. It was their punishment for causing alarm by bringing their guns. The smiles on the soldiers’ faces as they performed the press-ups suggest the prime minister succeeded in defusing the situation amicably.