Ethiopia’s free press fights to survive Abiy’s wartime crackdown

By The Africa Report
Posted on Thursday, 5 May 2022 13:40

Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed addresses the inauguration ceremony of a building of the new headquarters of the Commercial Bank of Ethiopia (CBE) in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, Feb. 13, 2022. Ethiopia on Sunday inaugurated the 209.15-meter-tall landmark building located at the heart of its capital city, which houses the country's largest public-owned commercial bank. The CBE new headquarters was built by Chinese construction giant China State Construction Engineering Corporation. (Xinhua/Wang Ping) - Wang Ping

Last week, one of Ethiopia's popular Amharic magazines, Feteh ('Justice'), came out with a riotous cover page that allegorically portrayed Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed as the late Ababa ('Father') Tesfaye, a prominent children's storyteller.

The cover illustrates Abiy waving to children from a TV screen – an iconic scene of Tesfaye, as generations recall him narrating tales on national television. The magazine’s title? An Era of Fairy Tale.

The critique appears inspired by a character assessment that is gaining popularity on social media following Abiy’s repeated public speeches in which he recites stories and proverbs instead of addressing critical issues.