By FASIL LEGESSE/JP
AUGUST 23, 2020
I have read the article on the ongoing negotiation between Ethiopia, Egypt, and Sudan on the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD). There are important facts that I have to highlight first. Ethiopia is the source of the Blue Nile and contributes 86% of the water. The GERD is the first major project the country is building on this River Basin. It is the symbol of the African Renaissance. The GERD is a hydroelectric generating dam, which Ethiopia is building on its rightful and equitable share over the Nile using its own finance.
While noting the effort of the writer to bring the matter to the attention of his readers, I thought I should add my voice to bring a more balanced perspective on what transpired during the ongoing negotiation. As an Ethiopian-Israeli, I follow this very closely.
The writer talks at length why Egypt is “justifiably’’ worried about the Dam. It is regrettable that he does not equally present the facts about Ethiopia. Ethiopia, the second-most populous nation in Africa, has suffered from consecutive severe droughts. Ethiopians faced existential challenges due to a lack of water and electricity. Millions of Ethiopians had perished due to famine. The issues of food security, water scarcity, and energy deficit are critical and daily challenges to millions of Ethiopians. This is not about the choice of comfort and luxury rather it is about basic livelihood and sustenance; it is about how to meet the day to day fundamental needs of the Ethiopian people.
The author is the Editor-in-Chief of Israeli-Ethiopian TV