UNITED NATIONS

HRI

International Human Rights Instruments

Distr.GENERAL

HRI/CORE/ETH/20086 February 2009

Original: ENGLISH

CORE DOCUMENT FORMING THE INITIAL PARTOF THE REPORTS OF STATES PARTIES

ETHIOPIA*

[12 September 2008]

CONTENTS

Paragraphs Page

Acronyms 9

I.INTRODUCTION 1 - 510

II.GENERAL INFORMATION 6 - 8911

A.Demographic, economic, social and cultural characteristicsof the State 6 - 2211

B.Constitutional, political and legal structure of the State 23 - 8914

III.GENERAL FRAMEWORK FOR THE PROTECTION ANDPROMOTION OF HUMAN RIGHTS 90 - 26125

A.Acceptance of international human rights norms 90 - 9825

B.Legal framework for the protection of human rightsat the national level 99 - 21027

C.Framework within which human rights are promotedat the national level 211 - 25547

D.Reporting process at the national level 256 - 26057

E.Follow-up to international conferences 26158

IV.INFORMATION ON NON-DISCRIMINATIONAND EQUALITY 262 - 28658

Annexes

1.Demographic indicators 63

2.Social, economic and cultural indicators 84

3.Indicators on the political system 119

4.Crime statistics and information on administration of justice 124

5.Legal framework 145

Tables

Table 1Population size of Ethiopia from 1970-2008 63

Table 2Estimates of population growth rate 63

CONTENTS ( continued )

Page

Table 3Ethiopian population by region, percentage, share and density 1 July 2006 64

Table 4Distribution of mother tongue and second language, urban and rural,Ethiopia: 1994 65

Table 5Distribution of population by religion and sex 69

Table 6Percentage distribution of population by religion and region,Ethiopia: 1994 70

Table 7Distribution of ethnic groups by sex, urban and rural, Ethiopia, 1991 71

Table 8Percentage distribution of major ethnic groups with 500,000 or more persons by region, Ethiopia, 1994 75

Table 9Distribution of total population by age group, sex, sex ratio, urban andrural areas: 2005 77

Table 10Projected trends in dependency ratio (per cent) 78

Table 11Estimated trends in life expectancy at birth 80

Table 12Current fertility rates 81

Table 13Household composition 82

Table 14Ethiopian population by residence and percentage share 83

Table 15Household expenditure 84

Table 16Unemployment rate 87

Table 17Currently employed population aged ten years and above by sex, majorindustrial divisions, urban and rural areas (country total): 2005 88

Table 18Employment to population ratio 89

Table 19Macroeconomic performance indicators 91

Table 20Consumer price index at country level 92

Table 21Trends in pro-poor sectors allocated budget out of total Government expenditure (%) 93

CONTENTS ( continued )

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Table 22External debt outstanding including arrears by source of financing 94

Table 23Domestic debt outstanding by types of borrowing instruments 94

Table 24The proportion of international assistance in relation to GNI 95

Table 25Prevalence of underweight children aged 3 to 59 months(under five years of age) 95

Table 26Infant mortality rate per 1,000 97

Table 27Direct estimates of maternal mortality for the period 0-6 yearsprior to the survey, Ethiopia 2000 97

Table 28Direct estimates of maternal mortality for the period 0-6 yearsprior to the survey, Ethiopia 2005 98

Table 29Current use of contraception: per cent distribution of all women, currentlymarried women, and sexually active unmarried women by contraceptivemethod currently used, according to age, Ethiopia 2005 99

Table 30HIV prevalence among women and men and disaggregated by age, 2005 100

Table 31HIV prevalence by socio-economic characteristics 101

Table 32HIV prevalence for the year of 2006/2007 101

Table 33Top ten leading causes of death 2002/2003 102

Table 34Top ten leading causes of death for females, 2002/2003 102

Table 35Top ten leading major causes of death, 2005/2006 103

Table 36Top ten leading causes of death for females, 2005/2006 103

Table 37Tigray Regional State, top ten leading causes of death,2006/2007 104

Table 38Tigray Regional State, top ten leading causes of death for females,2006/2007 104

Table 39Somali Regional State, top ten leading causes of death, 2006/2007 105

CONTENTS ( continued )

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Table 40Harari Regional State, top ten leading causes of death, 2003/2004 105

Table 41Harari Regional State, top ten leading causes of death, 2004/2005 106

Table 42Harari Regional State, top ten leading causes of death, 2005/2006 106

Table 43Harari Regional State, top ten leading causes of death, 2006/2007 107

Table 44Gambella Regional State, top ten leading causes of death, 2007/2008 (half year) 107

Table 45Percentage distribution of immunized children under five years of age by type of immunization and background variables, year - 2004 108

Table 46Net enrolment ratio in primary school 110

Table 47Net enrolment in secondary first cycle (9-10) 111

Table 48Gross enrolment in preparatory programme (second cycle) (11-12) 112

Table 49Urban rural disparity by level 113

Table 50Enrolment in vocational school (TVET) 114

Table 51Enrolment in higher education (gross) 114

Table 52Dropout rate in primary education 115

Table 53Literacy rate, age ten years and above 116

Table 54Number of recognized political parties at national level 119

Table 55Broadcasters (television and radio) registered and authorized by the Ethiopian Broadcasting Agency 119

Table 56Press products that circulate beyond the confinement of one region(from 10 March 2008 to 8 April 2008) 120

Table 57Seats for the House of Peoples’ Representatives in 1995 and 2000 121

CONTENTS ( continued )

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Table 58Seats for House of Peoples’ Representatives and regional councils for 2005 122

Table 59Voter turnouts by regions for the 2005 elections for nationalParliament and regional councils 123

Table 60Average voter turnout nationwide for the three regular elections 123

Table 61Incidence of violent death and life threatening crimes reportedper 100,000 persons 125

Table 62Number of crimes and persons recorded as offenders by sex andtype of crime per 100,000 persons 126

Table 63Number of crimes and persons recorded as offenders by sex andtype of crime per 100,000 persons 127

Table 64Number of prisoners found in regional and central prisons by sexand type of sentence for the year 2001/2002 129

Table 65Number of prisoners found in regional and central prisons by sexand type of sentence for the year 2002/2003 130

Table 66Number of prisoners found in regional and central prisons by sexand type of sentence for the year 2003/2004 131

Table 67Number of prisoners found in regional and central prisons by sexand type of sentence for the year 2004/2005 132

Table 68Number of prisoners found in regional and central prisons by sexand type of sentence for the year 2005/2006 133

Table 69Number of prisoners found in regional and central prisons by sexand type of sentence for the year 2006/2007 134

Table 70Number of prisoners found in regional and central prisons by crimecommitted and sex: 2001/2002 135

Table 71Number of prisoners found in regional and central prisons by crimecommitted and sex: 2002/2003 136

Table 72Number of prisoners found in regional and central prisons by crimecommitted and sex: 2003/2004 137

CONTENTS ( continued )

Page

Table 73Number of prisoners found in regional and central prisons by crimecommitted and sex: 2004/2005 138

Table 74Number of prisoners found in regional and central prisons by crimecommitted and sex: 2005/2006 139

Table 75Number of prisoners found in federal and regional prisons by crimecommitted and sex: 2006/2007 140

Table 76Number of prosecutors (per 100,000 persons) serving at federal andregional levels by sex: 2001/2002-2003/2004 141

Table 77Number of prosecutors (per 100,000 persons) serving at federal andregional levels by sex: 2004/2005-2006/2007 141

Table 78Number of judges (per 100,000 persons) serving at federal and regionalcourts by sex and region 2001/2002-2003/2004 142

Table 79Number of judges (per 100,000 persons) serving at federal and regionallevel courts by sex and region: 2004/2005-2006/2007 142

Table 80Incidence of death in custody 143

Table 81Backlog of cases at federal courts for 1997 to 2008 143

Table 82Backlog of cases at regional courts 144

Table 83Share of public expenditure on police/security and judiciary 144

Table 84Main international human rights conventions to whichEthiopia is a party 145

Table 85Other United Nations human rights and related conventions 145

Table 86Conventions of the International Labour Organization 145

Table 87Geneva Conventions and other treaties on internationalhumanitarian law 146

Table 88Regional human rights conventions 146

CONTENTS ( continued )

Page

Figures

Figure 1Age-sex distribution of the population, country total: 2005 78

Figure 2Projected trends in crude birth rate (medium variant) 79

Figure 3Trends in crude death rate 79

Figure 4Trends in DPT 3 coverage, measles immunization coverage andpercentage of fully immunized children 109

Figure 5Net enrolment rate in secondary first cycle (9-10) 111

Figure 6Gross enrolment in preparatory programme (secondary cycle) (11-12) 112

Figure 7Dropout rate 115

Figure 8Teacher student ratio in primary levels 116

Acronyms

AAGRAverage annual gross rate

ANDPAfar National Democratic Party

APDMAmhara People’s Democratic Movement

BGPDUFBenishangul - Gumuz People’s Democratic Unity Movement

BOHBureau of Health

CPIConsumer price index

CSACentral Statistics Agency

CUDCoalition for Unity and Democracy

DPPADisaster Preparedness and Prevention Agency

EDHSEthiopia Demographic and Health Survey

EHRCEthiopian Human Rights Commission

EPAEnvironmental Protection Authority

EPRDFEthiopian People’s Revolutionary Democratic Front

FDREFederal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia

GDPGross domestic product

GERGross enrolment rate

GFRGross fertility rate

GNIGross national income

GPDMGambella Peoples’ Democratic Movement

HICESHousehold income, consumption and expenditure survey

HIV/AIDSHuman deficiency virus/Acquired immune deficiency syndrome

HNLHarari National League

HOFHouse of Federation

HPRHouse of Peoples’ Representatives

ICRCInternational Committee of the Red Cross

JSRPJustice System Reform Programme

MMRMaternal mortality rate

MOEMinistry of Education

MoFEDMinistry of Finance and Economic Development

MOHMinistry of Health

NEBENational Electoral Board of Ethiopia

NGOsNon-governmental organizations

NLFSNational Labour Force Survey

NOPNational Office of Population

NPEWNational Policy on Ethiopian Women

OAUOrganization of African Unity

OFDMOromo Federalist Democratic Movement

PASDEPPlan for accelerated and sustainable development to end poverty

PRBPopulation Reference Bureau

SDRPPSustainable Development and Poverty Reduction Programme

SMPDUOSheko and Mezenger People’s Democratic Unity Organization

SNNPRSSouthern Nation, Nationalities, and Peoples Regional State

SPDPSomali Peoples’ Democratic Party

TVETTechnical and vocational education and training

UEDFUnited Ethiopian Democratic Forces

WMSWelfare Monitoring Survey

I. INTRODUCTION

1.The State has long manifested its commitment to the enjoyment of human rights within its territory. It has taken several legislative measures to ensure the protection and promotion of human rights. As part of such legislative measures, the State has signed up to six of the core international human rights instruments. These are the International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination, International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights, Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women, Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment, and Convention on the Rights of the Child. On the bases of these conventions and its domestic human rights legislations, the State has taken judicial and administrative measures to ensure the actual implementation of those rights.

2.As required under those international human rights instruments, the State recognizes its obligations to make initial and periodic reports to the treaty bodies detailing the extent of implementation of the country’s human rights obligations. The State, to the extent its resources permitted, has been making those reports to some of the treaty bodies such as the Committee on the Rights of the Child and the Committee on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women. In spite of the State’s efforts, many of the State’s reports are still over-due. This has happened due mainly to the dearth of financial and technical resources. However, this situation has changed. The State has been able to implement a project on its reporting obligations under the various international human rights agreements with the assistance of OHCHR East Africa Regional Office. The project, which is being implemented in collaboration with the Ethiopian Human Rights Commission, aims at the preparation of all the over-due reports under the various international and regional human rights instruments. To implement the project, a Legal Experts committee, a Drafting Committee, and an Ad hoc National Inter-Ministerial Committee, among others, have been organized. This document is one of the outcomes of the project, which have been further improved by the comments from the civil society groups in a consolidation workshop.

3.The State’s previous reports were based solely on individual conventions and their treaty‑specific guidelines. As such they did not reflect the integrated system of the international human rights implementation. This time around, however, recent developments to enhance the efficiency of the treaty reporting system have been taken into account and the State is able to make its reports in two parts: the common core document and the treaty-specific report. This document forms the first part of these reports.

4.The common core document, made in light of the harmonized guidelines on reporting to the international human rights treaty monitoring bodies (HRI/MC/2006/3), is believed to provide sufficient information and data relevant to all or several of the human rights treaties to which Ethiopia is a party. The present report, which should be considered in conjunction with future Treaty Specific Reports the country will make, consists of two major parts. The first part, which is presented in a form of narration, provides general information about the State (such as demography, economy, culture, etc), general framework for the protection and promotion of human rights (such as international human rights instruments, the Constitution, national human rights institutions, etc), and information on equality and non-discrimination. The second part,

which is the annexes and is mainly constituted of quantitative data, provides statistical information requested under appendices 2 and 3 of the harmonized guidelines with the necessary analysis.

5.The State hopes that this document will be invaluable for the treaty bodies in their review of the treaty-specific reports the country will present.

II. General Information

A. Demographic, economic, social and cultural characteristics of the State

Geography

6.The Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia (FDRE) is a land-locked country in north east Africa, approximately between 3 and 15 north latitude and 33 and 48 east longitude. Ethiopia is the oldest independent country in Africa and one of the oldest in the world. Paleontological studies identify Ethiopia as one of the cradles of mankind. The country is also noted for its pioneering role in the establishment of international and regional inter-governmental organizations. Ethiopia was a member of the League of Nations and a founding member of both the United Nations and the Organization of African Unity (OAU). The headquarters of many regional organizations including the former OAU, the current African Union and the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa are located in the capital, Addis Ababa.

7.Geographically, the country is the seventh largest country in Africa, covering a land area of 1,133,380 sq km (437,600 sq mi) of which 0.7 per cent is covered by water bodies. It shares international borders with Somalia and Djibouti in the east and south east, Eritrea on the north and north east, Kenya on the south, and Sudan in the west.

8.The topography of the country is largely a high plateau. Elevations range from 100m below sea level in the Dallol Depression (Kobar sink) to the number of mountain peaks in excess of 4,000m above sea level. The rift valley dissects the western and the eastern highlands. Much of the country consists of high plateau and mountain ranges, which are dissected by numerous ranges, streams and rivers. Among the biggest rivers are Blue Nile, Awash, Baro, Omo, Tekkezze, Wabe Shebelle, and Genale.

Temperature

9.The climate of Ethiopia is highly influenced by altitude. It has also a considerable variation of temperature conditions from cool to cool temperate (Dega) where average temperature ranges from freezing to 16oc, and from warm to cool climate (Woina Dega) where annual temperature ranges from 16oc to 20oc and from warm to hot climate (Kolla) where the average temperature is between 20oc to 30oc and the hot and arid climate (Bereha) where the annual temperature is over 30oc. There are two distinct seasons in Ethiopia: the dry season which is from October to May and the rainy season from June to September.

History

10.Ethiopian history as an organized and independent polity dates back to the beginning of the second century BC with the kingdom of Axum in the northern state of Tigrai. After the collapse of Axum, power shifted to Lasta and later to Shoa. In the eighteenth century, real power was in the hands of provincial nobles from the highlands of Ethiopia where during this period nations, nationalities and peoples of Ethiopia were administered by their own chiefs, rulers, sultans and kings as separate entities.

11.After 1880 it was the period of reuniting Ethiopia under one centralized government. During 1890s, Italian colonial powers arrived at the northern part of Ethiopia. They were defeated at the battle of Adowa in 1896 but Italy retained control of the northern part of Ethiopia and created its colony, Eritrea. Ethiopia had never experienced protracted period of colonialism although the country was occupied by Italians for five years from 1936-1941.

12.In the 1930s, Emperor Haile Selassie came to power and Ethiopia was under centralized autocracy. The first Constitution was adopted by Emperor Haile Selassie in 1931 which had no effect of limiting the power of the Emperor. Eritrea was federated with Ethiopia in 1952. The 1931 Constitution was revised in 1955 but Ethiopia still remained feudal. These and other factors provided the impetus for a revolution which led to the replacement of the Imperial regime by the military junta led by Mengistu Hailemariam. During this period there was unrest and civil war and the question of the rights of nations, nationalities, and peoples remained unanswered.

13.On May 29, 1991, the military regime was ousted by the Ethiopian People’s Revolutionary Democratic Front (EPRDF). This period marked the transition to democratic rule with the implementation of a political reform process which has transformed the single party rule into a multiparty federal republic. In the transitional period (1991-1995) several measures were taken to stabilize the country, to reform the economy and to establish democracy. A Transitional Charter was adopted which guaranteed the fundamental rights recognized in international human rights instruments. On 21 August 1995 the Charter was replaced with the Constitution of the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia that guarantees the protection of human rights, democracy and rule of law.

14.Ethiopia has nine regional states established by the Constitution which are Tigrai, Afar, Amhara, Oromia, Benishangul Gumuz, SNNPRS, Somali, Gambela, and Harari. There are also two self-administrative cities which are accountable to the Federal Government, namely Addis Ababa and Dire Dawa.

Demography

15.The total projected population of the country for July 2008 is estimated to be 79,221,000, of whom 65,996,000 (close to 85 per cent) are rural and 13,225,000 are urban dwellers. The average population density is 52.2 per square km with more than 85 per cent of the population concentrated in barely 45 per cent of the total territory. The majority of the population lives in the highland areas of the country. This makes Ethiopia one of the least urbanized countries in the world. Among the nine regional states, Amhara, Oromia and SNNPRS comprise about 80 per cent of the total population of the country. This makes Ethiopia the second most populous country in Africa next to Nigeria. At an annual population growth rate of 2.9 per cent, Ethiopia is expected to be the tenth most populous country in the world by 2050.

16.Ethiopia is home to more than 80 ethnic groups that vary in population size from more than 18 million people to less than 100. According to the Ethiopian National Census of 1994, the Oromo are the largest ethnic group in Ethiopia (32 per cent). The Amhara represent 30.2 per cent while the Tigray people are 6.2 per cent of the population. The age structure of the population is extremely young and typical of many developing countries; with children under 15 constituting 45 per cent of the population. The child dependency ratio is 90 per cent. 2.8 per cent of the population is composed of persons above the age of 65.

17.Female life expectancy is 57.92, roughly two years higher than the average male life expectancy which is 55.92. The rate of fertility is 5.4 per woman. Rural women have two and a half children more than urban women. The average household size is 4.8. Child birth and death rates stand at 36.89 and 10.75 respectively. 77 in every 1000 children die before becoming a year old, whereas 123 children in every 1000 children die before reaching age five. 20 per cent of children between 12 to 23 are fully vaccinated. Nearly 47 per cent of children are stunted, 11 per cent wasted and 38 per cent underweight. On average, 14 per cent of married women use a modern method of family planning.

18.Christianity and Islam are the main religions. Orthodox Christians make up 50.6 per cent of the population, 32.8 per cent are Muslims, and 10.2 per cent are Protestants. Practitioners of traditional faith constitute 5.5 per cent of the total population.

19.Ethiopia has more than 80 different languages with up to 200 different dialects spoken. Ethiopian languages are divided into four major language groups, namely Semitic, Cushitic, Omotic, and Nilo-Saharan. Semitic languages are spoken in Northern, central and eastern Ethiopia (mainly in Tigray, Amhara, Harrari, and northern part of SNNPRS). The Cushitic languages are mostly spoken in central, southern and eastern Ethiopia (mainly in Afar, Oromia and Somali regions). The Omotic languages are predominantly spoken between the lakes of Southern Rift Valley and the Omo River. The Nilo-Saharan languages are largely spoken in western parts of the country along the border with Sudan (mainly in Gambella and Benishangul ‑ Gumuz regions). Amharic is the official language of the Federal Government. Oromiffa, Tigrinya and Somali are among the many languages spoken in the country. (See annex 1 for demographic indicators).

Economy

20.Ethiopia has a booming economy with an average growth rate of 11.9 per cent for the last four years. It was even the fastest growing non-oil economy among Sub-Saharan African nations in 2007. Agriculture accounts for almost 45 per cent of the GDP, 63 per cent of exports and 80 per cent of the labour force. Many other economic activities depend on agriculture, including marketing, processing, and export of agricultural products. Recently, the manufacturing, construction and service sector have recorded significant expansion. The proportion of poor people in the country was estimated to be 38.7 per cent of the total population in 2004/05. The GDP per capita of the country reached 181 US$ in 2006/07. Currently, inflation rate has been increasing and caught the utmost attention of the government. The country has also been struggling with shortage of food due to the failure of rain. But with the efforts of the Government and the international community it was possible to deliver food aid to the affected regions. (See annex 2 on social, economic and cultural indicators).

Health and education

21.Ethiopia ranks highest among HIV/AIDS affected countries with an official estimate of more than 1.5 million people living with HIV/AIDS. A report by the Ministry of Health places the national adult prevalence rate at 4.4 per cent (3.8 per cent male and 5 per cent female). Malaria is a leading public health problem in Ethiopia. Tuberculosis and acute upper respiratory tract as well constitute leading causes of morbidity.

22.The gross enrolment rate (GER) of primary level education at national level has been increasing continuously reaching 91.6 per cent in 2006/07. On the other hand, the gender gap by GER has been decreasing except for the 2006/07 academic year. The net enrolment rate of primary level education stands at 78.6. The GER at secondary level has risen to 36.2 per cent. (See annex 2).

B. Constitutional, political and legal structure of the State

The Constitution of the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia

23.A Constitutional Assembly of Representatives, directly elected by the peoples of Ethiopia, ratified the Constitution of the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia. It was adopted on December 1994 following public debate over the pros and cons of the draft constitution throughout the country, making it the first popular constitution of the land. It entered into force in 1995.

24.The Constitution is the cornerstone for the formation of the Federal Democratic Republic, which is a fundamental departure from the previous centralized form of government. The Constitution, which is the supreme Law of the land, provides that all sovereign power resides in the Nations, Nationalities and Peoples of Ethiopia.

25.The Constitution has enshrined the spirits of Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR). It stipulates that all persons are equal before the law and are entitled to equal and effective protection of the law without discrimination on grounds of national or social origin, sex language, religion, political or other opinion, property, birth or other status. Further, the constitution provides that everyone has the right to freedom of thought, conscience and religion as well as inviolable and inalienable right to life, privacy, liberty and the security of person.

26.The Constitution also ensures democratic rights for every Ethiopian national without discrimination based on nationality, sex, language, religion, political opinion, or any other status. Everyone is entitled to the right to express him/her self freely and freedom of press is also enshrined in the constitution. In addition, every Ethiopian has the right to equal access to publicly funded social services. The right of access to justice within a reasonable time is also guaranteed.

27.In fact, ensuring the rights of nations, nationalities and peoples to self-determination including the right to secession, the Constitution has guaranteed a democratic condition in which national unity can be forged through the free will of the peoples of the country rather than by forceful means. Each nation and nationality has also the right to speak, write and nurture its own language, to express, develop and promote its culture as well as to preserve its history.

28.According to the Constitution, the state and religion are separate, and all the languages of Ethiopia have won equal state recognition. The Constitution further ensures gender equality. Women are now equally able to own, administer and utilize as well as transfer property with men.

Structure of the Federal Government

29.The Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia has a parliamentary form of government. The Federal Republic comprises the Federal Government and nine Regional States established on the basis of settlement patterns, language, identity and the consent of the people concerned. Member states are entitled to equal rights and powers. There are two self-governing cities: Addis Ababa and Dire Dawa.

30.The Federal Government and the regional states have legislative, executive, and judicial powers. The powers of federal and state governments are defined by the Constitution. It is incumbent upon regional states to respect the power of the Federal Government which likewise is bound to respect the powers of regional states. All powers not given expressly to the Federal Government alone or concurrently to the Federal Government and the states are reserved to the latter.

31.The federal arrangement, under the constitution, has guaranteed the rights of regional states to administer their own affairs. The regional states have their own constitutions and flags. They are empowered to formulate policies that are appropriate for their respective development, to lay the foundation for economic and social infrastructures, to directly participate in sectors that are critical for their economic development and to safeguard law and order in their own areas.

The legislative body

32.The FDRE has two Federal Houses: the House of Peoples’ Representatives (HPR) and the House of Federation (HOF).

House of People’s Representatives (HPR)

33.The HPR is the highest authority of the Federal Government. The house has legislative powers in all matters assigned to federal jurisdiction by the Constitution. Members of the HPR are elected by the people for a term of five years. The members of the HPR, who shall not exceed 550, are the representatives of the people as a whole. Minority nationalities and peoples have special representation in the HPR. Accordingly, at least 20 seats are reserved for such nationalities and peoples.

34.In order to be able to discharge appropriately the duties entrusted to it by the Constitution, the House has established 12 standing committees. The committees are formed in accordance with the organizational set -up of the federal government organs. The committees enable the House to have effective legislative procedures.

The House of Federation (HOF)

35.The House of Federation (HOF) is composed of representatives of Nations, Nationalities and Peoples. Each Nation, Nationalities and Peoples has at least one representative in the HOF. One additional representative shall represent every nation or nationality for every one million people. The state councils elect members of the HOF. The state councils may themselves elect representatives to the HOF or they may hold elections to elect representatives by the people directly.

36.According to article 62 of the FDRE Constitution, the HOF has the power, inter alia, to interpret the Constitution, decide on the basis of the Constitution on issues relating to the right of Nations, Nationalities and Peoples’ to self-determination including secession, to promote and consolidate the unity and equality of peoples and find solution to dispute or misunderstanding that might arise between states.

The Executive

The President of the FDRE

37.The President of the FDRE is the head of the State. The HPR nominates the candidates for presidency. The President is elected by a joint session of both Houses with the approval of a two third majority vote. The President’s term of office is six years. A president can only be elected for two consecutive terms.

38.The President’s powers and functions include opening the joint session of the two Houses, appointing ambassadors and other envoys, conferring high military titles upon the recommendation of the Prime Minister and granting pardon in accordance with the law.

The Prime Minister

39.A political party or a coalition of political parties that has the greatest number of seats in the HPR forms and leads the executive. The highest executive powers of the Federal Government are vested in the Prime Minister and in the Council of Ministers that are responsible to the HPR. In the exercise of state functions, members of the Council of Ministers are collectively responsible for all decisions they make as a body.

40.The Prime Minister is elected from among members of the HPR and his/her term of office is the duration of the mandate of the HPR. The Prime Minister is the Chief Executive, the Chairman of the Council of Ministers and the Commander-in-Chief of the national armed forces. The Prime Minister follows up and ensures the implementation of laws, policies, directives and other decisions adopted by the HPR. The Prime Minister submits nominees for ministerial posts, for posts of commissioners, the president and vice-president of the Federal Supreme Court and the Auditor General to HPR for approval. He further submits to the HPR periodic reports on the work accomplished by the Executive as well as on its plans and proposal.

41.The Council of Ministers comprises the Prime Minister, the Deputy Prime Minister, Ministers and other members as may be determined by the law. The Council is accountable to the Prime Minister. In all its decisions, the Council is responsible to the HPR. The Council, inter alia, ensures the implementation of laws and decisions adopted by HPR, draws up the annual federal budget and implements the same when approved by the HPR, formulates the country’s foreign policy and exercises overall supervision over its implementation and submits draft laws to the HPR on any matter falling within its competence. It has the power to declare a state of emergency. In doing so, it submits the decree declaring state of emergency for approval by the HPR within 48 hours if the house is in session or with in 15 days where it is not in session.

The judiciary

42.An independent judiciary is established by the Constitution. Supreme Federal judicial authority is vested in the Federal Supreme Court. Judicial powers both at the Federal and State levels are vested in the Courts. Courts at all levels are free from any interference or influence of any governmental body, government official or from any other source. Judges exercise their functions in full independence and are directed solely by the law.

43.The House of Peoples’ Representatives has the power to establish the Federal High Court and First-Instance Courts nation wide or in some parts of the country as it deems necessary. Unless arranged in this manner, the jurisdiction of the Federal High Court and the First-Instance Courts are delegated to the Regional State Courts.

44.The Federal Supreme Court has the highest and final judicial power over state matters. The Federal Supreme Court has a power of cassation over any final court decision containing a basic error of law. The State Supreme Court has power of cassation over any final court decision on state matters, which contains a basic error of law. Federal courts have jurisdiction over cases arising under the Constitution, Federal laws and international treaties.

45.No judge shall be removed from his duties before he reaches the retirement age determined by law except when the Judicial Administration Commission decides to remove him for violation of disciplinary rules or on grounds of gross incompetence or inefficiency; or that a judge can no longer carry out his responsibilities on account of illness, and when the HPR or the concerned state council approves by a majority vote the decisions of Judicial Administration Commission.

46.The judiciary is able to discharge powers independently and serves as a balancing element to the executive body, providing the “checks and balances” which are decisive for the observance of the rule of law, good governance and democratization.

Sharia court

47.Pursuant to chapter three of the Constitution, disputes arising in relation to marriage, personal and family laws could be adjudicated in accordance with religious or customary laws, with the consent of the parties thereof. The House of Peoples’ Representatives and State Councils can establish or give official recognition to religious and customary courts. Accordingly, Sharia Courts have been established at federal and state levels.

48.The Federal Sharia Courts (Federal First Instance Court of Sharia, Federal High Court of Sharia and Federal Supreme Court of Sharia) are accountable to the Federal Judicial Administration Commission.

49.Federal Courts of Sharia have common jurisdiction over the following matters:

(a)Any question regarding marriage, divorce, maintenance, guardianship of minors and family relationships; provided that the marriage to which the question relates was concluded, or the parties have consented to be adjudicated in accordance with Islamic Law;

(b)Any question regarding waqf, gift/Hiba/, succession of wills; provided that the endower or donor is a Muslim or the deceased is Muslim at the time of his death;

(c)Any question regarding payment of costs incurred in any suit relating to the aforementioned matters.

50.The Sharia courts have jurisdiction over the aforementioned matters only where, the parties thereof have expressly consented to be adjudicated under Islamic law. Federal Courts of Sharia adjudicate cases under their jurisdiction in accordance with Islamic law. In conducting proceedings, the courts apply the civil procedure law in force. The law prohibits the transfer of a case brought before a Sharia Court, the jurisdiction of which has been consented to, to regular courts and for a case before a regular court be transferred to a Court of Sharia.

51.The Supreme Council for Islamic Affairs, upon request of the Federal Judicial Administration Commission, carries out the recruitment of judges known as Kadis. The appointment of Kadis, who are to be placed at any level, is approved by the Federal Judicial Administration Commission, upon recommendation by the President of the Federal Supreme Court. The budget of Federal Courts of Sharia is drawn from budgetary subsidy to be allocated by the Federal Government and assistance from other sources. Sharia courts are also established in various regions and administrative councils having the same jurisdiction as Federal Sharia Courts.

Structure of regional state Governments

52.Each of the nine regional states has its own constitution. They are organized in state councils, zones, special woredas or woredas or municipalities and kebelles. However, the State Council of each Regional State may organize other administrative hierarchies and determine their powers and duties.

The State Council

53.The State Council is the highest organ of the state authority. It is responsible to the people of the respective regional states. Each State Council has legislative power on matters falling under state jurisdiction. The people of respective regions elect members of regional states councils for a term of five years by direct, free and fair elections conducted through secret ballots. The Councils have powers to draft, adopt and amend state constitutions, which must be consistent with the provisions of the FDRE Constitution.

Council of Nationalities

54.In SNNPRS, there are two councils, the State Council and the Council of Nationalities. State Council has the same power and function as other state councils. What is unique in this region is the presence of Council of Nationalities, which is a feature not found in other states. The Council of Nationalities is composed of representatives of nations, nationalities and peoples at least by one member. Each nation, nationality or people are represented by one additional representative for every one million of its population.

55.The Council has the power, inter alia, to interpret the regional constitution; organize the council of constitutional enquiry; decide on issues relating to nation, nationalities and peoples right to zone, special woreda and woreda administration according to the state constitution; create favorable conditions in which the history, culture, and language of nationalities are studied; study disputes between neighboring states and the question of border delimitations, submit report to the House of Federation and follow up the implementation.

State executive organs

56.A political party that has the greatest number of seats in the States Councils forms the executive and leads it. The Executive Council is the highest administrative body of the States and is accountable to the States Councils. The Executive Council is composed of the Chief Executive, Deputy Chief Executive, Head of Executive Bureaus and other members determined by the law. The Chief Executive is the Chairman of the regional states executive councils.

57.The executive councils have among others the powers and functions to: ensure the implementation of laws and decisions issued by the State Council and Federal Government; issue directives; draw up the state budget and when approved by the state council, implement the same; formulate economic and social policies and strategies of the state; submit draft laws to the state council, when approved, implement it and declare a state of emergency.

States judiciary

58.Judicial power in the regions is exclusively vested in the courts. Independent judiciary of the Regional State is established by their Constitutions. Courts of any level are free from any interference or any influence of a governmental body, public official or any other source. Judges exercise their function in full independence and are solely directed by the law.

59.The judicial organ of the states comprises the State Supreme Court, Zonal High Court, Woreda Courts and Kebele Social Courts. The Social Courts are the lowest and first instance courts of the regions.

60.The Regional Supreme Court has the highest and final judicial power over state matters. It also exercises the jurisdiction of the Federal High Court over federal matters. It further exercises power of cassation over any final court decision on all State matters, which contain a basic error of law.

61.Regional High Courts, in addition to regional jurisdiction, exercise the jurisdiction of federal first instance courts. Decisions rendered by a Regional High Court exercising the jurisdiction of the federal first instance courts are appealable to the Regional Supreme Court.

62.The State Supreme Court draws up and submits directly to the respective regional state council for approval, the administrative budget of the regional courts and administers the same upon approval. The State Supreme Court requests the federal Supreme Court compensatory budget for those state courts which concurrently exercise the jurisdiction of federal courts.

Structure of Addis Ababa and Dire Dawa City Governments

63.Addis Ababa and Dire Dawa Cities are organized in City Council, Mayor, City Cabinet, and City Judicial Organs.

Addis Ababa and Dire Dawa City Councils

64.The residents of the cities elect members of the Councils for a term of five years. The Cities Councils have the power to promulgate proclamations on matters such as master plan of the city and establishment of executive organs.

Addis Ababa and Dire Dawa Cities Executive Body

65.The political party occupying the majority seats of the councils or, where such does not exist, the coalition of political parties constitutes the executive organ of the cities. The Mayor, being accountable to the respective City Council and the Federal Government, is the chief executive officer of the city.

Addis Ababa and Dire Dawa City Court

66.The City Governments of Addis Ababa and Dire Dawa have City Courts and Kebelle Social Courts. Addis Ababa or Dire Dawa City Courts comprise First Instance Courts and Appellate Courts. The First Instance Court has first instance jurisdiction over matters falling under the jurisdiction the respective city courts. The Appellate Courts entertain appeals over the decisions of the First Instance Court and other bodies entrusted with judicial power.

The legal framework

67.In Ethiopia, the law consists of:

(a)The Constitution of the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia;

(b)Laws passed by HPR in all matters assigned to the Federal jurisdiction (proclamations);

(c)International Treaties ratified by Ethiopia;

(d)Laws passed by State Councils on matters falling under State jurisdiction;

(e)All previous laws (Laws promulgated before 1991) in force, which are not inconsistent with the Constitution;

(f)Regulations enacted by the Council of Minister pursuant to the powers vested in it by HPR;

(g)Regional Regulations passed by State administration pursuant to powers vested in it by State Council;

(h)Directives issued by executive organs of the Federal Government and States;

(i)The Decisions of the Cassation Division of Federal Supreme Court that contain binding interpretation of laws;

(j)The final decision of HOF on constitutional Interpretation which is applicable on similar constitutional matters that may arise in the future;

(k)Religious and customary laws with regard to family and personal matters where the parties consent to be adjudicated accordingly and so far as they don’t contravene the constitution.

Electoral system

68.In Ethiopia the right to elect and to be elected is enshrined in the Constitution. Under Chapter Three of the Constitution every Ethiopian national, without any discrimination, has the right to take part in the conduct of public affairs directly and through freely chosen representatives, to vote in accordance with the law and to be elected at genuine and periodic election to any office at any level of government.

69.The Constitution stipulates for a national election board to be established. Accordingly, the National Electoral Board of Ethiopia (NEBE) has been established by Proclamation No. 111/1995. This Proclamation has been recently replaced by Electoral Law of Ethiopia Amendment Proclamation No. 532/2007. The Proclamation, in addition to establishing NEBE and enumerating its tasks, deals with the process and principles of elections. On this basis every election must be free, direct and based on equal participation of the people. Moreover, it has been principally declared that the secrecy of the voting process must be respected. The amended proclamation also reiterates the same principle regarding electoral systems.

70.The NEBE handles all election matters at both federal and State levels. As an electoral executive body of the nation, the Board is entrusted with the responsibility of ensuring that all elections are held in accordance with the Constitution and the Electoral proclamation of the country.

71.The Board has a number of powers and responsibilities necessary for the implementation of the Proclamation. The Board has the duty to facilitate and ascertain that elections held periodically and at every level are conducted in a free and fair manner; investigate, cancel election results, order re-election or order injunction of the act and bring perpetrators before the court of law where it has received information about violation of law in the election process among others.

Complaints on the conduct of elections

72.Complaints regarding elections can be raised and presented in accordance with election laws. Initially they shall be directed to the Election Board, followed by an appeal to the Federal High Court by a party dissatisfied with the Board’s ruling. Although there is no organized data regarding types of complaints and their numbers, several complaints have been raised by almost all participants of previous elections: by the ruling party, opposition political parties, and independent candidates. The overwhelming majority of complaints presented in the last few elections that took place since the beginning of multi-party elections lacked prima facie evidence. However, some complaints of irregularities alleged to have been caused in connection with voter and candidates’ registrations or methods and means of campaign or in connection

with casting and counting of votes were investigated and resolved through various measures such as holding of a re-election in a constituency where the irregularity was found to affect the outcome of the election.

73.The Board is accountable to the HPR. This, however, does not mean that the House can interfere with the work of the Board. The House has the mandate only to follow up whether the board is doing its job according to the laws enacted to guide its work. To this effect the Board has a duty to submit to the House of Peoples’ Representatives periodic reports on its activities. Members of the Board are appointed by the House of People’s Representatives upon nomination by the Prime Minister.

74.The law has provided that every Ethiopian above the age of eighteen is eligible to vote. The only exceptions are persons incapable of making decision due to mental disorder, serving a term of imprisonment passed by a court of law and whose electoral rights are restricted by law. According to election statistics, 50 per cent of the population is believed to be eligible to vote. This figure represents Ethiopian citizens- citizenship is a requirement for participation under election laws and hence non-citizens are not allowed to vote - that are 18 years of age and above. Regarding persons falling under the exceptions, there is no organized data. Still it is believed that their number is small to significantly affect the percentage of eligible voters. Voter turnout in the country is among the highest by world standards. In the three successive elections carried out for both national and regional assemblies, the average voter turnout has been more than 85 per cent. (Tables 59 and 60).

75.For the purpose of holding elections, the territory of the country is divided into permanent constituencies that may be arranged in accordance with census results by taking the Woreda (district) as a base and without affecting state boundaries. According to the electoral system, a candidate who receives more votes than other candidates within a constituency is declared a winner (simple plurality system).

76.In accordance with the Constitution, elections at the national level take place every five years. Regional states have also issued the periods of elections for their councils’ seats. At State Council level, the period of election, like the Federal Parliament, is every five years. The first regular election took place in 1995 for the House of Peoples’ Representatives and regional councils’ seats. Other two national and regional elections took place in 2000 and 2005. Other elections such as local elections (for instance at Woreda and Kebele levels), re-elections and by‑elections took place at different times depending on circumstances and depending on the periods specified in the Constitutions of regional states.

77.Regular elections at national and regional levels were almost all conducted as scheduled. Some delays in few parts of the country were necessary in conducting local elections and in exceptional few constituencies at national and regional levels due mostly to logistics. For instance, elections for 2005 in the Regional State of Somali were held on 21 August 2005, while it was conducted in May through out the country. This deferral was due to logistical reasons, as the people in this region are pastoralists and mobile registration units are needed to register voters. Because this requires intensive use of the Board’s resources, elections in this region could not be held at the same time as the other regions.

78.Election laws allow political parties to register at national or regional levels. Presently there are 22 political parties recognized at national level. (See table 54). In the first two regular elections, legislative seats, especially the seats in the federal parliament, were substantially controlled by EPRDF, taking hold of more than 85 per cent of the seats. Nevertheless, the situation has been changing and in the last national election that took place in 2005, the share of EPRDF, the incumbent, was 60 per cent, while the rest was taken by other parties and independents. The share of women in the legislature presently stands at 21 per cent in the HPR and 26.1 per cent on average in regional councils. (See tables 57 and 58).

Media coverage

79.Due to the country’s history of state-monopoly of the media, government-owned media channels were the principal sources for information for the public until recently. With the government’s commitment to democratization and human rights, press and media laws were issued, aiming at the free ownership of media channels. As a result, more and more private and community channels have started and presently they constitute important sources of information and entertainment to the public. Most of the channels operating nation-wide use major languages of the country such as Amharic, Oromiffa and Tigrigna. Foreign languages such as English are also used. (See tables 55 and 56).

Non-governmental organizations

80.The Associations chapter of the Civil Code, the Associations Registration Regulations of 1966 and the Code of Conduct of Associations of 1996, among others, are the relevant legal instruments in which NGOs operate in Ethiopia. On the basis of these laws, the Ministry of Justice, at federal level, is empowered to register associations (which are generally classified into professional, civic, religious, development and others). The term NGO is not used in the registration process but most of the associations fall under the traditional category of NGOs. Up to 3,582 associations were registered at the Ministry of as at the 22 January 2008. Among these, 121 are civic associations directly involved in human rights promotion and protection. Although no complete data is available, hundreds of NGOs are believed to register and work at regional levels. For instance, in the two of the three largest regions, NGOs registered are 255 in SNNPRS and 235 in Oromia Regional State. Depending on circumstances, NGOs may be required to register with other government offices such as the Disaster Prevention and Preparedness Agency of the Federal Government.

81.NGOs are exempted from custom duties on imported capital goods if they are related to their projects. In addition, the law exempts all varieties of incomes of NGOs from taxation as long as the NGOs adhere to the principle of non-distribution and maintain their non-profit engagement. NGOs can form networking among themselves and can also create umbrella organizations. A new legislation is underway to improve recognition and licensing of associations (charities and societies) that are involved, among others, in promotion and protection of human rights.

Administration of justice

Crimes and prison

82.The principal document of the State dealing with crimes and their punishment is the Criminal Code of 2004, which is applicable at both federal and State levels. Suspected criminals are charged and sentenced on the basis of this Code, which identifies crimes and their corresponding punishment. For serious crimes such as intentional homicide, rigorous imprisonment such as life sentence may be imposed, while other offences such as theft may entail simple imprisonment. Criminals sentenced for imprisonment are held in incarceration institutions located at federal and regional levels. (See tables 62-75). Sometimes, although unrelated to the conditions of their treatment in prison facilities, incidences of death at prisons occur. (Table 80).

Judges and prosecutors

83.The State understands the importance of increasing the number as well as the quality of its law enforcement officials, mainly of prosecutors and judges. Accordingly, it has designated available resources for this purpose. Despite this, the number of judges and prosecutors in the country has not reached a level considered satisfactory. The ratios of prosecutors-to-persons and judges-to-persons have shown improvements in the last five years but still remain 3.59 (for 100,000) and 3.53 (for 100,000) respectively. Although not significant, disparities of these ratios among regional states are observed. It may also be noted that the shortage of judges at different levels is believed to have caused backlogs witnessed in courts at both federal and regional levels. (See tables 76-79).

Maximum and average time of pre-trial detention

84.The Constitution and the Criminal Procedure Code require persons arrested to be brought before courts within 48 hours. As a result, persons suspected of a crime and detained are brought before courts immediately and are tried and/or are released upon producing a bail bond. Especially with the recent introduction of “Real Time Dispatch” in the justice administration (the system by which the Police, Prosecutors and Courts work together to immediately dispose a criminal case within a day or so), most minor and flagrant cases are tried and decided within a day or few days. There are few instances in which bail is not allowed under the law whereby arrested persons may stay detained before trial for few weeks or months at the most.

85.Over-all data indicates that pretrial-detention phase at the Federal level takes, on average, seven days. The State of Afar reported that the average pretrial detention lasts for 14 days while the maximum time will take close to one month. The State of Benishangul - Gumuz has set the maximum time a person should be detained before trial may not exceed two months while the average time for such detention lasts for seven days.

Incidence of death penalty

86.The Constitution allows the imposition of death penalty “as a punishment for a serious criminal offence determined by law”. Implementing this provision, the Criminal Code allows death penalty “only in cases of grave crimes and on exceptionally dangerous criminals … as a punishment for completed crimes and in the absence of extenuating circumstances.” Other requirements for imposition of such a penalty include the attainment of 18 years of age at the time of the commission of the crime, confirmation by the Head of the State, and “ascertainment of its non-remission or non-commutation by pardon or amnesty”.

87.While this general legal framework explains the extreme exceptionality of imposition of death penalty, the absence of actual execution of this penalty in the State illustrates how capital punishment has been de facto non-applicable. During the last 15 years, it has been only three death penalties that were carried out throughout the country. This de facto non-application owes itself to the strict and numerous preconditions for imposition of the penalty and the extreme reluctance of courts to impose such a penalty.

Free legal aid

88.The right of any accused person to be represented by legal council basis itself on article 20(6) of the Constitution. For accused persons who don’t have the financial capacity, the Constitution has laid dawn an obligation on the state to provide legal representation at state expense where miscarriage of justice would otherwise arise. Though statistical data couldn’t be found on proportion of persons who have benefited from free legal aid, a system by which accused persons get a defense lawyer free of charge by applying to the court exists.

Proportion of victims compensated after adjudication

89.Though statistical data regarding this indicator could not be found, victims of a crime can institute a civil suit in the courts to get compensation for the damage they sustained thereby. For victims of crime who do not have the means to institute a suit, a mechanism has been established to make this possible. Assisting victims of crimes or violations of human rights in civil proceedings to claim damages where such victims are unable to institute, such claims in the federal courts and to follow up - the proceedings is, one of the duties imposed on the Ministry of Justice according to the legislation enacted to define powers and duties of FDRE executive organs. Accordingly, the department of civil affairs has been instituted and is operational.

III.General Framework for the Protectionand Promotion of Human Rights

A. Acceptance of international human rights norms

Ratification of main international human rights instruments

90.The ratification status of international human rights instruments by Ethiopia is provided in detail in Table 84. Ethiopia is a party to six of the seven core international human rights treaties. Ethiopia has not yet become a party to the International Convention on the Protection of the Rights of All Migrant Workers and Members of their Families.

91.Ethiopia is not a party to the two Optional Protocols to the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights relating to the individual complaints mechanism and the abolition of the death penalty. The Optional Protocols to the Convention on the Rights of the Child on the involvement of children in armed conflict and on the sale of children, child prostitution and child pornography have not been accepted. Furthermore, Ethiopia is not a signatory to the Optional Protocols to the Convention on the Elimination of All forms of Discrimination against Women and the Convention against Torture, and the competence of their respective treaty bodies to receive and consider petitions from individuals have also not been accepted.

92.The Ethiopian Government has not made a declaration under article 41 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights accepting the optional procedure relating to the competence of the Human Rights Committee to consider complaints made by other States parties. Similarly, the optional procedure of accepting the competence of the Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination to consider individual complaints and the optional procedure of the Committee against Torture to receive and consider individual and State complaints have not been recognized. (See table 84).

Reservation and declarations

93.Ethiopia has made a reservation to article 29, paragraph 2 of the Convention on the Elimination of All forms of Discrimination against Women. This reservation relieves the State from the obligation to submit disputes with other member states in connection with the interpretation or application of the Convention to arbitration and, in the absence of agreement on organization of the former, the International Court of Justice.

94.This reservation was entered into for fear of inclusion of provisions with far reaching consequences on the State’s ability to provide. Since the reservation has little negative implications with regard to national laws and policies, there is no special legislative attempt to withdraw this reservation. However, its withdrawal may be considered to be part of the constant review and considerations of ratifications and accessions that are presently withheld due mostly to resource limitations.

Derogations, restrictions, or limitations

95.Although the Government has the power to derogate certain human rights in times of emergency as set out in Federal Constitution, there is currently no derogation placed on fundamental human rights and freedoms in the country.

Acceptance of other relevant United Nations and regional human rights conventions

Ratification of other United Nations human rights and related treaties

96.The State has ratified several other United Nations human rights and related treaties. (See table 85).

Ratification of other relevant international conventions

97.Other relevant international conventions to which the country is a party are provided. (See tables 86 and 87).

Ratification of regional human rights conventions

98.Ethiopia is a party to the African Charter on Human and People’s Rights, the African Convention on the Rights and Welfare of the Child (ACRWC) and the Organization of African Unity (OAU) Convention Relating to the Specific Aspects of Refugee Problems in Africa. The Ethiopian Government has also signed the Protocol to the African Charter on Human and People’s Rights for the Establishment of the African Human Rights Court. Ethiopia is signatory to the Protocol to the African Charter on Human and People’s Rights on the Rights of Women in Africa, which is before the HPR for ratification. (See table 88).

B. Legal framework for the protection of human rights at the national level

Domestic legislation on human rights

99.The normative framework for the protection of human rights and fundamental freedoms are guaranteed under the Federal Constitution, State Constitutions and various pieces of domestic legislations.

Constitutional provisions on human rights

100.The Constitution of the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia recognizes human rights as one of the fundamental principles of the Constitution. The Constitution dedicates a chapter on human rights and fundamental freedoms. The Constitutional Bill of Rights is divided into two parts: Part one guarantees fundamental human rights that are applicable to all individuals within the territorial jurisdiction of the country and Part two on democratic rights providing political rights that can be enjoyed by citizens. This chapter guarantees a broad range of rights and comprises of thirty-one articles from article 14 to 44. Furthermore, the Bill of Rights is constitutionally entrenched making amendment to Chapter Three possible only under very rigorous conditions.

101.Almost all the rights provided in the core human rights instruments are guaranteed under the Constitution. Articles 14 to 17 guarantee the right to life, liberty and security of the person including freedom from arbitrary arrest, detention and conviction. Article 18 prohibits cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment and punishment, acts of slavery, servitude and human trafficking of any form.

102.Articles 19 to 23 deal with the criminal justice system and provide due process guarantees and fundamental human rights protections for persons arrested, accused, deprived of liberty and convicted prisoners. This includes the right to be promptly informed of reason for arrest, the right to be brought before a court of law within 48 hours, habeas corpus, freedom from self incrimination, right to speedy trial, presumption of innocence, right to legal counsel and right to appeal to a competent court. Humane treatment of persons deprived of their liberty and basic principles such as non-retroactivity of criminal law and prohibition of double jeopardy have also been constitutionally protected.

103.Right to honour and reputation and to recognition everywhere as a person is protected under article 24. The equality and non-discrimination clause of the bill of rights is provided under article 25 which guarantees equality of everyone before the law and equal protection of the law and prohibits discrimination on multiple grounds including ‘other status’ leaving room for broad interpretation by the courts.

104.The right to privacy, freedom from unlawful search and seizure and inviolability of correspondence have been provided under article 26. Article 27 ensures freedom of religion, belief and opinion. Article 28 prohibits statute of limitation and amnesty or pardon for criminal liability of persons accused of crimes against humanity as defined by international agreements ratified by Ethiopia, such as genocide, summery executions, forcible disappearances and torture.

105.Part two on democratic rights guarantees freedom of expression, thought and opinion recognizing freedom of press, prohibition of censorship and right of access to information under article 29. Citizens right to assembly, peaceful demonstration and petition and freedom of association, movement and right to nationality are provided in articles 30 to 32.

106.Right of everyone to marry and establish a family is protected under article 34 which makes the society and state custodian of family as the natural and basic unit of society. Rights for specific categories such as women and children are also allotted a separate article under 35 and 36 of the bill of rights. In particular, article 35 on the rights of women recognizes affirmative measures to remedy the historical legacy of inequality and discrimination.

107.To ensure that all rights guaranteed under the Constitution and other legislations are enforced, the Constitution further guarantees under article 37 the right of access to justice and to get remedies from judicial bodies. The right to participate in the conduct of public affairs directly and through representatives elected through genuine, periodic, free and fair elections has been provided for in article 38.

108.Nations, nationalities, and peoples were accorded group protection under article 39 particularly of the right to self-determination, including the rights to use their own languages, to develop and promote their culture and to full measure of self government. The right to property including ownership and use of land is regulated under article 40.

109.Economic, social and cultural rights are also equally guaranteed under article 41 of the bill of rights. Particularly obligation of the state to allocate increasing resources to public health, education and other services, and to allocate resources for vulnerable sections of the society such as physically and mentally disabled, the elderly and children without guardian, is expressly prescribed in the constitution.

110.Employment rights such as formation of trade unions, right to strike, to limited working hours, to rest and leisure, to healthy and safe working environment, rights of women to equal pay for equal work have been provided under article 42. Article 43 recognizes the right to development, including right to participation and consultation in national development and polices and projects affecting their communities.

111.The right of everyone to a clean and healthy environment has also been explicitly protected under article 44 of the constitution. (See chapter three of the Constitution in annex 5).

112.In addition to explicit protection of fundamental human rights, the Constitution enumerates some of these guarantees as guiding principles and objectives by which the implementation of legislations and policies of the state will be directed.

National regional state constitutional guarantees of human rights

113.As provided earlier, the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia comprises of Federal Government and State Governments. Both levels of Government exercise legislative, executive and judicial powers. Particularly, State Councils have the power to legislate on matters falling under their purview. Pursuant to the articles 50(5) and 52(2) (b), States have the mandate to enact and execute State Constitutions and other legislations. Accordingly, the respective States have drafted and adopted their own constitutions. Most of the State Constitutions have been modeled on the Federal Constitution and thus comprise extensive provisions that guarantee fundamental human rights and freedoms.

Limitations, restrictions and derogations

Limitations

114.The Constitutional guarantee of human rights and fundamental freedoms are not without qualifications. Several limitations have been provided in the constitutional provisions due to various considerations such as protection of rights or freedoms of others, human dignity, honour or reputation of individuals, national security, public health, public order, public morality, public peace, prevention of crimes and protection of democratic values on which the state is founded.

115.Limitations to fundamental human rights under the Constitution are not made arbitrarily but should be justifiable within the grounds provided above. Furthermore, constitutional rights can only be justifiably limited upon determination of a specific law whose purpose shall be safeguarding national security, public peace, prevention of crime, protection of public health and morality, preservation of democratic values, protection of rights of others or other similar public interest. Accordingly, limitation clauses are themselves further qualified by provisos such as “… except under compelling circumstances and in accordance with specific laws whose purpose shall be to safeguard national security …”, “… as determined by law”, “in accordance with such procedures as are established by law” and “… appropriate regulations shall be made in the interest of public convenience, protection of democratic rights”.

116.Article 29 (6) of the Constitution on freedom of thought, opinion and expression illustrates this point very well when it provides: “These rights can be limited only through laws which are guided by the principle that freedom of expression and information can not be limited on account of the content or effect of the point of view expressed. Legal limitation can be laid down in order to protect the well-being of the youth, and honour and reputation of individuals.”

Derogations

117.Derogation may also be made to fundamental human rights in times of serious emergencies. Circumstances that warrant the declaration of a nation-wide state of emergency and trigger suspension of some constitutionally protected human rights are external invasion, a natural disaster or epidemic, a break down of law and order that endanger the constitutional order and which cannot be controlled by regular law enforcement agencies and personnel as set out under article 93 of the Constitution. State-wide state of emergencies can also be declared in the event of natural disaster or epidemic.

118.The Council of Ministers has the power to decree a state of emergency. The decree should be presented to the House of Peoples’ Representatives within forty-eight hours if it is in session and within fifteen days if it is not in session. After consideration, the Council of Ministers’ decree has to be accepted by a two third majority of the House of Peoples’ Representatives to remain in effect through a State of Emergency Proclamation. Such a proclamation can stay in effect for six months and can be renewed for four months by a two third majority vote of the House of Peoples’ Representatives. A State of Emergency Inquiry Board will also be established to ensure that derogation of human rights is not arbitrary; measures taken are consistent with the constitution; corrective measures are taken and perpetrators of acts contrary to the Constitution are appropriately punished.

119.A declaration of state of emergency empowers the executive body to issue regulations and take all necessary measures, including the suspension of fundamental rights and freedoms, to properly respond to and avert the catastrophe. Certain human rights, however, remain non‑derogable even in the most extreme of circumstances. These are :article 18 which prohibits inhumane treatment; article 25 which guarantees equality of everyone before the law and equal protection of the law and non-discrimination and articles 39(1) and (2) which guarantee peoples’ right to self determination up to secession and peoples’ right to speak, write and develop their language, culture and preserve their history. (See annex 5).

Specific legislations relating to human rights

120.The broad and general human rights guarantees under the Constitution are further regulated by specific legislations enacted by the Federal legislature and the State Councils, regulations enacted by the Council of Ministers and Directives enacted by Executive organs to further implement the constitutional provisions. Some of these legislations are:

(a)Ethiopian Human Rights Commission Establishment Proclamation No. 210/2000;

(b)Office of the Ombudsperson Establishment Proclamation No. 211/2000;

(c)Electoral Law of Ethiopia Amendment Proclamation No. 532/2007;

(d)Political Parties Registration Proclamation (as amended) 46/1993;

(e)Peaceful Demonstration and Public Political Meeting Procedure Proclamation 391/1991;

(f)Broadcasting Service Proclamation No. 533/2007;

(g)Nationality Proclamation 378/2003;

(h)Labour Proclamation No. 377/2003;

(i)Federal Civil Service Agency Establishment Proclamation (as amended) No 8/1995;

(j)Federal Civil Servants Proclamation No. 515/2007;

(k)Public Servants Pension Proclamation 345/2003;

(l)The Revised Family Code Proclamation 213/2000;

(m)Ethiopian Environmental Protection Authority Establishment (Proc 9/1995);

(n)Relevant sections of the Civil Code regulating personal rights, property, association, succession, etc;

(o)Relevant sections of the Criminal Procedure Code.

Incorporation of human rights in the national legal system

121.In accordance with article 9(4) of the Constitution, all international agreements ratified by Ethiopia are part of the law of the land. (See annex 5.2). Accordingly, international human rights treaties ratified by the HPR form the law of the country. The HPR incorporates these instruments into the national law through what is called a “ratification proclamation”, which is a piece of legislation by the HPR ratifying international agreements. (See annex 5.3). By this proclamation, the HPR identifies the international instrument, which is the subject of ratification, and declares that the instrument is ratified. (A sample of ratification proclamation is attached). Under normal circumstances, international instruments ratified are simply referred to and are not reproduced in the Official Gazette (Negarit Gazette).

122.Moreover, reproduction in the Official Gazette of all international human rights agreements ratified by Ethiopia with their translation in Amharic is recommended and preparation is underway to enact a special Negarit Gazette.

123.Since the federal legislature is charged with ratifying international agreements through proclamations, human rights conventions rank at least as high as other legislations enacted by this body. However, the Constitution, which enjoins the use of international human rights instruments (particularly the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the two Covenants and international instruments adopted by Ethiopia) in interpreting its human rights provisions, affords those instruments a higher status than ordinary legislations. This means that as far as human rights and fundamental freedoms are concerned, international instruments are higher than ordinary legislations and are instruments of interpretation for human rights provisions of the Constitution, which is the supreme law of the land. In practice, international rules, irrespective of their consensual or customary base and irrespective of their subject matter, are applied beyond and above ordinary legislations. The one and only limitation, which has not so far occurred, is the possibility of their contradiction with the Constitution, in which case they may not be applicable.

Organs competent in matters of human rights

124.The Constitution tasks Federal as well as State legislative, executive and judicial organs at all levels with the duty and responsibility to respect and enforce the human rights provisions enumerated under Chapter Three of the Constitution. All the organs of the State thus complement each other in ensuring the implementation of human rights law. The HPR issues laws concerning human rights through ratification of human rights treaties and issuance of legislations, such as the Criminal Code, which aim, among others, at prevention of violation of human rights. The executive ensures the putting into practice of those ratified conventions and legislations and the judiciary interprets these provisions.

Judicial bodies

125.Courts: The Constitution provides for an independent judiciary. Criminal trials are public with exceptional cases. Defendants have a right to legal counsel and a public defender’s office exists to provide counsel to indigent defendants without whom gross miscarriage of justice would ensue.

126.In accordance with the decentralization policy, judicial bodies were established along federal lines with the establishment of courts at the district, zonal, and regional levels. The Federal High Court and the Federal Supreme Court hear and adjudicate original and appeal cases involving federal law, trans-regional issues, and national security. The regional judiciary was increasingly autonomous and hears cases that fall under their jurisdiction. Regional Justice Bureaus and the Ministry of Justice monitor local judicial developments.

127.To remedy the severe lack of experienced staff in the judicial system, the Government has embarked on a programme of identifying and training lower court judges and prosecutors through the establishment of the Judicial and Prosecutors Training Centre in 1995.

128.In accordance with Federal Courts Establishment Proclamation No 25/96, Federal courts have jurisdiction to decide upon all cases of violations of human rights, at least by way of appeal or cassation. As provided in article 3, Federal Courts have mandate to adjudicate cases that arise under the Constitution, Federal Laws and International Agreements. International agreements are further stipulated as substantive laws to be applied by the Federal Courts.

129.Federal courts of Sharia: Sharia Courts were established in accordance with Art 34(5) of the FDRE Constitution and have jurisdiction to settle disputes among consenting parties on issues of marriage, personal and family rights.

130.The House of Federations: The House of Federations is mandated with interpreting the Constitution. This organ has the exclusive jurisdiction to decide upon disputes on the interpretation of Constitution including Chapter Three relating to fundamental human rights and freedoms enshrined in the Constitution. Particularly, it has the specific mandate of deciding on question of rights of Nations, Nationalities and peoples to self determination including the right to secession. The House of Federations also has the mandate to promote equality among peoples of Ethiopia. It is further charged with ordering Federal Intervention in states when the Federal Constitution has been endangered. One of the grounds for intervention is widespread violation of human rights. Accordingly, the House of Federations has the mandate to assess the human rights situation in states and intervene when it feels that there is widespread violation that requires the Federal State to intervene.

131.Council of Constitutional Inquiry: This organ, as an advisory body to the House of Federations, has the power to investigate constitutional disputes and, upon finding it necessary, interpret the Constitution and forwards its recommendations to the House of Federations. Accordingly, it may decide on the interpretation of human rights provisions of the Constitution. Although this body does not have decision making power but merely makes recommendations to the House, which has the authority to accept or reject any recommendation, it exercises the mandate to reject or accept questions of interpretation at the initial stage of application.

132.Military courts: have jurisdiction over persons accused of military offences enumerated under the Criminal Code, offences committed by a member of the Defense Forces on active duty, and offences committed by prisoners-of-war. The military justice system is lacking in well trained staff to handle a growing caseload. Accordingly foreign assistance to train military justice officials has been sought.

Administrative bodies with competence affecting human rights

133.It is important to note that most administrative bodies with respective tribunals have final say in matters that fall under their authority. However, their decisions are only administrative and can thus be challenged before regular courts.

The Council of Ministers

134.The highest executive power of the Federal Government is vested in the Council of Ministers and the Prime Minister who are collectively responsible to the House of Peoples Representatives. The main function of the Council is to ensure the implementation of laws and decisions adopted by the House of Peoples Representatives. The Council of Ministers has budgetary power and draws up the annual federal budget for approval of the HPR. It is also mandated explicitly mandated to protect patent and copy rights.

135.Policy Making and Implementation: The Council also has the mandate to draw up and implement economic, social and development policies. This basically refers to the various policies and programmes that the government has in place to address various issues and implement legislations including human rights obligations undertaken.

136.The Council of Ministers also has the power to decree a state of emergency which could temporarily suspend the enjoyment of fundamental human rights with the exception of the non‑derogable rights. The decree, however, has to be submitted to the House of Peoples Representatives within the time limit provided under the Constitution.

Police Commission

137.The Federal Police Commission and Regional Police are mandated with the power to prevent crimes, investigate crimes falling within their jurisdiction, execute orders and assistance in times of emergency. As a result, they may affect human rights in the discharge of their functions to prevent and prosecute crimes.

138.Prison Administration Commissions: This organ has the power to affect the rights of persons deprived of their liberty.

139.Local militia: Militias also operate as local security forces largely independent of the police and the military. Particularly, in the rural areas where there are few police officers, the local militias play a central role in law enforcement and in maintaining law and order.

140.National Electoral Board: The National Electoral Board of Ethiopia has the mandate to organize elections at various levels. In addition to administering elections, it also receives and considers complaints from various stakeholders on election related matters. Its decision is appealed to regular courts.

141.Federal Civil Service Agency: Reconstituted by the Federal Civil Service Agency Establishment Proclamation (as amended) No. 8/1995, the Agency has the mandate to prepare laws and policies relating to civil servants. It also has final decision making power relating to certain issues pertaining to employment rights of civil servants. It has the authority to decide on human rights violations arising from employment relationships between government and civil servants.

142.Labour Relations Board: it has the authority to decide upon collective rights of workers under the county’s labour law. The courts ensure the rights of individual workers.

143.Federal Tax Appeals Tribunal: the tribunal has the authority to decide upon matters of tax appeal. The Federal Tax Appeal Tribunal was established by Proclamation No 233/2001, A Proclamation to Provide for the Establishment of the Federal Tax Appeal Tribunal. The tribunal is established with the aim of examining and deciding on appeals lodged by the tax payers against tax assessment made by the Authority. The Tribunal holds tax appeal hearings and gives decisions on complaints made by tax payers regarding assessments. The decision of the Tribunal is appealable to the Federal High Court on grounds of error of law. The court of appeal does not go into the merits of the case and only decides on matters of error of law.

144.Federal Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission: it has the power to detain, investigate and prosecute individuals suspected of corruptions.

145.Social Security Agency: it was established with the objective of strengthening and expanding currently existing social security schemes in the country. Particularly, it has the authority to decide on matters relating to the rights of public servants to monetary or other entitlements such as pension rights. The Authority additionally determines the amount of social security benefits that a claimant is entitled to.

146.Social Security Appeal Tribunal: it was established by Proclamation No. 38/1996. The tribunal has the mandate to examine and give final decisions on appeals made against decisions

of the Social Security Authority relating to social security rights and benefits. The Tribunal has the mandate to confirm, reverse or vary the decisions of the Authority against which appeal has been made by individuals.

147.Agency for Government Houses: The agency has the power to decide on matters affecting houses owned by the State and available for rent.

148.Environmental Protection Authority (EPA): it was established by Proclamation No. 9/1995, with the objective of ensuring that all developmental activities of the country are carried out in a manner that will protect welfare of human beings as well as protect, develop and utilize resources on which they depend for survival in a sustainable manner.

149.The Authority has the mandate to prepare environmental protection policies and laws and follow up its implementation, prepare directives and systems to evaluate social and economic development projects on the environment, and follow up and supervise their implementation and to provide instructions and create awareness on the need for environmental protection. It is further specifically mandated to follow up the implementation of international treaties on environmental protection to which Ethiopia is a party.

150.Ethiopian Broadcasting Authority: it was established by Proclamation No. 178/1999, with the power to issue, suspend and cancel broadcasting service license. It also has the power to issue permits and control the manner of use of radio waves allocated for broadcasting. A Broadcasting Board exists with the authority to investigate and decide on the complaints of broadcasting service licensees and the public.

Other authorities

151.House of Peoples Representatives (HPR): the HPR has the power to approve or reject a state of emergency declared by the executive branch. This has far reaching implications as human rights are temporarily suspended to overcome the national emergency.

152.The House of Peoples Representatives has Legislative power (art. 55 (1) FDRE Constitution). Specifically it is mandated with ratifying international human rights instrument, making them part of the law of the land.

153.The HPR is also mandated to enact specific legislations on labour, patent and copy right, enforcement of the political rights established by the Constitution and electoral laws and procedures, Nationality and immigration issues and rights of refugees and issues of asylum, penal law, enact other laws deemed necessary for sustaining an economic community.

154.It is also charged with determining the organization of national defence, public security and a national police force which are institutions whose mandates has wide implications on the enjoyment and/or limitation of human rights.

155.The HPR also approves general policies and strategies for economic, social and development and fiscal and monetary policy of the country and ratify federal budget which has wide implications for the promotion and protection of human rights particularly socio-economic rights. The HPR also has established the Ethiopian Human Rights Commission and the Institution of the Ombudsperson and determined their powers and functions. It oversees the performance of their powers and responsibilities under the law.

156.In the event of widespread violations of human rights in regional states, the HPR is mandated to call a joint session with the House of Federation to determine appropriate measures to put a stop to such violations.

157.The House of Peoples Representatives also has power of oversight over the executive branch. Accordingly, it can call into question the conduct of Executive Officials including the Prime Minister in whom the highest executive power of the Federal Government is vested. (art. 72(1)). It is also mandated to discuss and take decisions on the power of the executive as it deems appropriate.

158.Standing Committees as well as ad hoc committees could also be established for specific purposes. A good example is the Parliamentary Committee of Inquiry established in October 2005 to investigate an alleged use of excessive force by security forces during demonstrations, an allegation which the Commission found to be incorrect. In 2004, an independent parliamentary inquiry commission was also established to investigate violence that broke out in Gambella Region. The Commission’s findings indicated that six members of the army were arrested and placed on trial for their involvement in the killings.

159.State Councils: State Councils have power of legislation on matters falling under state jurisdiction.

160.Ethiopian Women Development Fund: it is empowered to assist in the capacity building of women and in the promotion and protection of the rights of women.

161.Ethiopian Human Rights Commission: the Ethiopian Human Rights Commission was established by Proclamation 210/2000. The Commission was established with the objective of providing human rights education to the public, to ensure that human rights are protected, respected and enforced and to ensure that necessary measures are taken when human rights violations occur.

162.As the national human rights institution, it is mandated with ensuring that human rights provisions of the Constitution are respected by all organs of the state, political organizations, citizens and other associations, ensuring that legislations, regulations and directives as well as government decisions and orders do not contravene the human right provisions of the constitution. Providing public education using mass media and other with the aim of enhancing its tradition of respect for and demand for enforcement of rights; receiving complaints and carrying out investigations in respect of human rights violations; making recommendations for revision of existing laws, enactment of new laws and formulation of policies; providing consultancy services on matters of human rights; forwarding its opinion on human rights report to be submitted to international organs; translating into local vernaculars, international human rights instruments adopted by Ethiopia and dispersing the same; participating in international human rights meetings, conferences or symposia; and carrying out other activities as may be necessary to attain its objective.

163.Individuals have a right to lodge complaints before the Commission claiming violation of their rights. After having received a complaint submitted to it, anonymously or otherwise, the commission investigates the complaints. The Commission during its investigation of complaints can order the accused to appear before it and defend their case.

164.The Commission can provide remedies through amicable settlement. The Commissionin providing its decision, shall also expressly state the act having caused the grievance to be discontinued, that the directive having caused the grievance to be rendered inapplicable and the injustice committed to be redressed or that appropriate measures be taken.

165.The Institution of the Ombudsperson: the institution of the Ombudsperson was established by the 1994 Constitution and its establishing proclamation 211/2000 with the aim of bringing about good governance with high quality, efficiency and transparency and based on rule of law by ensuring the rights and benefits of citizens are respected by executive organs.

166.The office is charged with supervising the administrative directives issued, decisions given by executive organs and practices to ensure that they do not contravene with the constitutional rights of citizens, receiving and investigating complaints with respect to maladministration and seeking remedies where it believes that maladministration has indeed occurred. The institution also is mandated to carryout studies on ways of curbing maladministration and makes recommendations on laws, policies to bring about better governance. One Ombudsperson is charged with heading Children’s and Women’s Affairs.

167.The Office commenced operations on 14 July 2005. The institution is accountable to the House of Peoples Representatives (HPR). The institute is hybrid human rights, ombudsperson body. In the event of an overlapping jurisdiction with the Ethiopian Human Rights Commission, decision will be made in consultation of the Ethiopian Human Rights Commission.

Direct enforcement of international human rights by the courts, other tribunals or administrative authorities

168.The provisions in the human rights instruments can be invoked before courts, tribunals and other administrative organs. This is principally borne out of the Constitutional assertion, referred above, that all international agreements ratified by Ethiopia are integral parts of the law of the land. For instance in a legislation providing for Federal Courts, the Courts are obliged to settle cases or disputes on the basis, among others, of “international treaties”. Equally important are legislations such as the Criminal Code of the State that have provisions ascertaining the application of international rules in courts by using phrases such as “international agreements”, “public international law”, “international custom”, and “international humanitarian conventions”.

169.In practice, courts routinely refer to international agreements and international customs as sources of rules that shall apply to cases before them. For instance, the Convention on the Rights of the Child in cases involving children and several of ILO Conventions in labour matters are frequently cited in judicial decisions at both Federal and regional courts. For illustration, two cases of direct enforcement of international human rights in domestic courts may be mentioned, one from Federal and another from regional courts. The first is the decision of the Cassation Division of the Federal Supreme Court which stated that the Convention on the Rights of the Child (1984) to which Ethiopia is a party forms part of the law of the land and hence is directly enforceable by courts. (Federal Supreme Court Cassation Division, Case No. 000/001/23632) The case revolved around whether it shall be the surviving father (who never cared for the child for the whole ten years) or a caring aunt (who cared for the child’s entire life) that should be appointed as a guardian of the child after the latter’s mother passed away. The Court used the “best interests of the child” of article 3, paragraph 1 of the Convention as a principal consideration in its ruling to appoint the aunt as a guardian. Although a surviving spouse (in the case, a surviving father) is the first to be a guardian under family laws, this priority must submit to the best interest of the child, which is the situation in the case before the Court. This is an important decision as the decision of the Cassation Division is binding on lower courts, both at federal and regional levels.

170.Another case is a case from Amhara Regional State. It is a genocide trial case (one of a series of trials of officials of the former military government). (Criminal Case No. 21/98, Nov. 2000, the Supreme Court of Amhara Regional State) The Court cited the Genocide Convention of 1948, the Convention against Torture, and the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination to assert, inter alia, its jurisdiction, to show the conformity of the previous Penal Code to international standards and on the merits as well.

Remedies for persons who allege that their rights have been violated

Constitutional remedies

171.Almost all the rights enumerated in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights are guaranteed in the Constitution. Under the title fundamental rights and freedoms, Human rights and democratic rights are enumerated and divided in two parts in Chapter Three. Under this chapter the Constitution places a responsibility and duty on all federal and State government organs, to respect and enforce the provisions of the Chapter. Moreover, the Constitution orders for the rights and freedoms laid down under this Chapter, to be interpreted in a manner conforming to the principles of the UDHR, international covenants on human rights and international instruments adopted by Ethiopia. Accordingly, each government organ has an obligation to enforce the rights and where a person alleges that his rights guaranteed under this Chapter can get a remedy from appropriate organs established for this purpose.

172.The right of access to justice or the right to bring a justiciable matter to a court of law or any other competent body with judicial power and obtain a decision or a judgment is one of the rights guaranteed under this chapter. An individual who claims that any of his or her rights have been violated can, thus, bring the matter to a court of law or any other competent body with judicial power and obtain a decision or judgment.

173.Any person who alleges that his fundamental rights and freedoms have been violated by the final decision of any governmental organ or official may present his case to the Council of Constitutional Inquiry for constitutional interpretation. Final decision means an adjudication that has been exhausted and from which no appeal can be made.

House of Federation

174.The house has the power to interpret the Constitution and where the constitutional case submitted to it pertains to the fundamental rights and freedoms enshrined in the constitution, the interpretation is made in a manner conforming to the principles of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and international instruments adopted by Ethiopia.

175.Where a case is directly submitted to the house, it will forward the same to the Council of Constitutional Inquiry. The final decision of the house on constitutional interpretation has the status of a precedent and therefore is applicable on similar matters that may arise subsequently.

The Council of Constitutional Inquiry

176.The Council of Constitutional inquiry is a body established by the Constitution to give professional support to the house of federation in its task of interpreting the Federal Constitution. Where any law or decision given by any governmental organ or official which is alleged to contradict the Constitution is submitted to it, the Council will investigate the matter and submit its recommendations thereon to the HOF for a final decision.

177.Any party having a case before a court may, where he believes that there is a need for constitutional interpretation in deciding the issue, submit the issue to the Council of Constitutional Inquiry while the same case is being handled by the court. The Court before which the case is brought may also submit the issue to the Council. A party seeking for constitutional interpretation should, before submitting the issue to the council, submit the question before the court handling the case.

178.According to the rules of procedure of the Council, where a constitutional matter which is submitted to it relates to the fundamental rights and freedoms enshrined in the constitution, such matters shall be interpreted in a manner conforming to the principles of UDHR and international covenants on human rights adopted by Ethiopia which calls for the application of international human right instruments on the disputed issue.

Civil judicial procedures and remedies

179.It is not only the Constitution that contains rights of individuals; the Civil Code enumerates rights endowed on a person under the title rights of personality. Under this section the right to privacy, freedom of residence, freedom of thought and religion, freedom of action and the like are enumerated. An individual can bring an action before civil divisions of the court, if there is any violation against these rights.

180.At the same time, the rights guaranteed in the Constitution have been elaborated through different legislations. Where there is an ordinary legislation intended to give effect to the rights contained in the Constitution, an individual alleging violations of his/her rights can submit his case to the court or other tribunals which are established to give remedy for violations under the specific legislation. An example is the Freedom of the Press Proclamation No. 34/92 which gave effect to the right to expression under the Constitution. Any person alleging a violation of their rights under this Proclamation can bring their case to courts.

181.At the same time, a Law has been enacted in order to give effect to political rights of citizens. Specific legislations have been enacted such as the electoral legislations (proclamation to ensure the conformity of the electoral law of Ethiopia proclamation with the Constitution of the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia, Proclamation No. 111/1995 and now amended by Proclamation No. 532/2007) according to which grievances regarding a violation in the exercise of this right can be submitted to the body established under the legislation, the National Electoral Board of Ethiopia(NEBE) and depending on the nature of the grievance to different bodies instituted for such purpose by the board.

182.The Law provides citizens the right to appeal human rights violations in civil courts; however, no such cases were filed during the year. Additionally, the Ethiopian Human Rights Commission, an office established by parliament to record human rights violations, was intended to act as a clearinghouse for human rights complaints from individual citizens. The Commission had not yet established this capacity.

183.The Constitution also provides for writ of habeas Corpus where by a person who has been detained has not been brought before a court of law within the prescribed period provided under the law or where he has not been given reason for his arrest. The Detainee can get relief by petitioning a court.

Remedy from courts and other administrative tribunals

184.One can bring a suit before the courts, to the civil division or criminal division as the case might be. According to article 2035 of the Ethiopian civil code, a person commits an offence where he infringes any specific and explicit provision of a law, decree or administrative regulation. The code uses the term offence in order to denote civil fault and the principle that whosoever causes damage to another by an offence shall make it good is laid dawn in article 2028.

185.For instance a person can go to civil division of a competent court for the subject matter and institute a suit based on a right violated under the civil code. The defendant will be extra contractually liable or the plaintiff may report the case of violation to the police in order to institute investigation and constitute a suit through the public prosecutor. One can also go to the labour board where his right under employment law is violated where the subject matter is not one falling under the jurisdiction of ordinary courts.

Modes of compensation to victims

In civil cases

186.The victim of an offence is awarded an equivalent amount in damages that is equal to the damage done by the act giving rise to liability. In addition, to this the code allows for a moral damage to be compensated where the law expressly provides it. Other modes of compensation are restitution of property taken or its value and compensation for the cost incurred by the plaintiff; restitution in kind, retraction where honour and reputation is at stake and injunctions to stop acts prejudicial to the plaintiff.

In criminal cases

187.In Criminal cases there is a system of compensation for criminal acts. Where a crime has caused considerable damage to the injured person or persons having rights from him, the injured person or those persons having rights from him are entitled to claim that the criminal be ordered to make good the damage or to make restitution or pay damage by way of compensation.

National mechanisms for overseeing the implementation of human rights

The House of Peoples’ Representatives (HPR)

188.The HPR disposes its responsibility of overseeing the implementation of human rights through its different standing committees. For instance the Standing Committee on Women Affairs ensures and supervises that the rights guaranteed for women in the Constitution are being protected. Likewise, the Legal and Administrative Standing Committee supervises whether rights and freedoms guaranteed in the Constitution are being properly implemented. The HPR, upon receiving a complaint about a massive human right violation, also establishes an independent body that investigates the case and thereby passes a decision. However, there is no separate standing committee with the sole responsibility of monitoring human rights.

Council of Nationalities

189.This is a unique kind of regional State Council found in the Southern Nations, Nationalities and People’s State; a state that comprises more than 65 per cent of the total nations and nationalities existing in the country. It is established by the regional constitution and is composed of representatives of all nations and nationalities, represented at least by one member.

190.The Council has the power to interpret the regional constitution and it oversees that the rights stated in both regional and federal constitutions of nations and nationalities are fully respected and to ensure that all nationalities are represented democratically in each hierarchy.

The Ombudsperson

191.The Institution of the Ombudsperson is a governmental institution established by the Federal parliament to oversee the protection of the rights and freedoms of citizens by the executive, to ensure good governance and rule of law and to duly rectify or prevent the unjust

decisions and orders of executive organs and officials. With a view to bring about good governance, the Ombudsperson makes recommendations for revision of existing laws, practices or directives and for the enactment of new laws and formulation of policies.

192.The Ombudsperson has the power to supervise that administrative directives issued and decisions given by executive organs, and that the practices thereof do not contravene the constitutional rights of citizens and the law. Moreover, the Institution is authorized to conduct supervision with a view to ensure the executive carries out its functions in accordance with the law and to prevent maladministration. The Institution receives and investigates complaints of maladministration and seeks remedies in case where it believes that the same has occurred.

193.The investigative mandate of the ombudsperson however, does not extend to the following matters:

(a)Decisions given by councils established by election in their legislative capacity;

(b)Case pending in courts of law of any level;

(c)Matters under investigation by the office of the Auditor-general;

(d)Decisions given by security forces and units of defense forces in respect of matters of national security or defence.

Ethiopian Human Rights Commission

194.The Ethiopian Human Rights Commission is an organ which plays a major role in enforcing and overseeing the implementation of human rights in the country. The Commission, since its establishment, has performed many activities on human rights protection. It has given remedies to several complaints of human rights violation by taking measures upon its initiation; investigating the matter and providing legal advice on the issue.

195.The Commission has the following duties and responsibilities in connection with its mandate of overseeing the implementation of human rights:

(a)To promote awareness of human rights to the public, to ensure that human rights are protected, respected and fully enforced and to take measures during violation;

(b)To ensure that laws, regulations, directives, government decisions and orders do not contravene the human rights of citizens guaranteed in the Constitution;

(c)To undertake investigation, upon complaint or on its own initiation, in respect of human rights violations;

(d)To make recommendations for the revision of existing laws, enactment of new laws and formulation of policies;

(e)To provide consultancy services on matters of human rights;

(f)To translate into local vernaculars, international human rights instruments adopted by Ethiopia and disseminate the same.

Administration for Refugees and Returnees Affairs

196.Regarding the case of refugees, the responsible body in the country is Administration for Refugee - Returnee Affairs office. The office executes laws, regulations and directives enacted to regulate the case of refugees. It coordinates and supervises the services given to refugees through its branch offices found in regions where refugee camps are located.

197.In collaboration with World Food Programme and United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees Regional Liaison Office and other charities, the office provides food, water, shelter and other social services including health services and education to refugees. Special care is accorded to children and women refugees to protect them from difficulties they may encounter owing to their special vulnerability. In addition to these welfare services, the Office commits itself to ensuring the security and well being of refugees during their stay in the camps.

Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs

198.The Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs is the relevant body having the mandate and the responsibility to follow up the case of elderly persons and persons with disability. The Ministry has the duty to undertake and facilitate the implementation of studies on ensuring and improving the social well being of citizens, in particular, on the creation of equal opportunity for persons with disabilities and the provision of care to the elderly and the encouragement of their participation in all aspects of public life.

Ministry of Women’s Affairs

199.The Ministry is established to specifically address the particular situation of women. The Ministry has the power and the duty, among others, to initiate recommendations on the protection of the rights and interests of women at national level and follow up the implementation of the same by devising strategies and follow up mechanisms, that the preparation of policies, legislations, development programmes and projects by federal government organs give due consideration to gender issues. Moreover the ministry has the mandate to undertake studies to promote the well being of mothers and children and implement the same in cooperation with other organs.

Ethiopian Women’s Development Fund

200.This is one of the machineries existing in the country, established for the advancement of the situation of women in the country. The fund, among many other activities, assists organizations that work for the respect of the rights of women in acquiring managerial skills by coordinating implementing capacity building training and other similar programmes.

201.In order to enable women with low living standards to organize in income generating activities with the view to alleviating their economical and social problems, the fund provides financial, material and technical support to income generating activities run by organized women groups. The Office is accountable to the Ministry of Women’s Affairs.

Gender mainstreaming policy and strategy

National policy on Ethiopian women

202.The National Policy is based on the respect for human rights and democratic rights without distinction, as set out in the United Nations and other international agreements to which Ethiopia is a party. The Policy aims at facilitating the equality of men and women in all aspects be it political, social and economic life.

203.Including many other objectives, it aspires to make sure that women participate in the formulation of government policies and laws, regulations, programmes, plans and projects that directly or indirectly benefits and concern women. In order to achieve this aim the policy set out many implementation strategies including the establishment of a department of women affairs in all ministries and governmental organizations, entrusted with the responsibility of organizing women and promoting their interest. Ministry of Women Affairs is the body entrusted with the responsibility of following up and coordinating the implementation of this policy.

Plan for Accelerated and Sustainable Development to End Poverty (PASDEP)

204.The PASDEP is a document defining the national development plan. It is a strategic framework guiding the country for the five-year period, 2005/06-2009/10. It carries forward important strategic directions pursued under the Sustainable Development and Poverty Reduction Program (SDPRP) that was in use before the adoption of PASDEP.

205.Unleashing the potential of Ethiopian women, who constitute about half of the population, is central to the PASDEP strategy. This involves liberating women from low-productivity tasks, and increasing their participation in the work force and social and political processes of the country. Specific measures have been set out to accomplish this goal including the major push to increase girl’s and women’s education.

206.In addition to these measures, safeguarding rights such as access to land, credit, and other productive resources are central to the strategy, as it protects women from the multiple forms of other deprivations, such as longer working days, and violence and discrimination against women, which are still widespread in the country. Measures to address these issues are also central to the PASDEP strategy.

207.The Government has moved decisively to advance the agenda on the gender dimensions of poverty during SDPRP and a significant number of initiatives are underway, including the National Action Plan on Gender, which forms the core of the gender strategy under PASDEP, as well as analytical initiatives such as mainstreaming of gender into the budgeting process, and strengthening gender-disaggregated data reporting to better inform and influence policy making.

Regional mechanisms

208.Ethiopia is a party to two African human rights instruments that provide for certain mechanisms of monitoring the implementation of human rights. One is the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights, which established the African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights to promote and protect the rights envisaged in the Charter. One of the monitoring mechanisms requires a periodic report of every two years to be submitted to the Commission on legislative or other measures to give effect to the rights and freedoms protected under the Charter. Ethiopia expects to submit a report to the African Commission. Although it was not resorted to in matters where Ethiopia is involved, inter-state communication is also allowed in the Charter. Other communications such as communications from individuals or groups that believe that their human rights under the Charter are violated are also permitted. At the moment there are three communications relating to Ethiopia pending before the African Commission on Human Peoples’ Rights. One relates to an alleged miscarriage of justice, the other to compatibility of certain Ethiopian legislation to a human rights convention, and the other to rights of accused persons. Since all are at the early stage of admissibility, a stage at which communications are confidential, details about the merits are not available.

209.The other is the African Charter on the Rights and Welfare of the Child, which established a Committee of Experts “to promote and protect the rights and welfare of the child”. The Charter requires initial reporting within two years of the entry into force and periodic reporting every three years. The reports shall indicate measures adopted to give effect to the provisions of the Charter and progress made in the enjoyment of the rights. Ethiopia has not yet submitted a report to the Committee of Experts. Although communications by a person, a group or NGOs are allowed in the Charter, no communication has so far been instituted before the Committee relating to Ethiopia. The Ethiopian government has also signed the Protocol to the African Charter on Human and People’s Rights for the Establishment of the Africa Court.

210.Ethiopia is also a party to the OAU Convention Relating to the Specific Aspects of Refugee Problems in Africa. The Protocol to the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights’ on the Rights of Women in Africa is before the HPR for a discussion on ratification.

C. Framework within which human rights are promoted at the national level

National and regional parliaments and assemblies

211.The Constitution provides that all legislative organs of the government at different levels of governance shall respect and ensure the promotion and protection of human rights and fundamental freedoms. So far, various actions have been taken by the federal and regional parliaments in discharging this responsibility. By ensuring the compatibility of domestic laws with human rights norms, they are playing a crucial role in the promotion and protection of human rights.

212.In addition, in any decision of the House or the Council on economical, social and political matters, due consideration is given to its impact on the promotion and protection of human rights. In particular, in approving the hitherto Five Year Development Plan, the House ensured the incorporation of human rights and democratization as major components of the programmes.

213.The House of Peoples’ Representatives and State Councils have different Standing Committees that supervise the actions of different organs of the executive in their respective jurisdictions. The federal and regional executive organs submit periodic performance reports to the Committees or the House or the Council in plenary. Such hearings enable the legislative organs to oversee compatibility of the actions of the executive organs with human rights norms. Trainings on human rights issues have been given to members of parliaments to equip them with better understanding of human rights so that they discharge their responsibilities effectively.

214.As the supreme organ of the state, the House has been establishing Inquiry Commissions for the purpose of investigating allegations of gross violations of human rights in some parts of the country. Some of the councils of the regional states also have a procedure in place for entertaining allegations of gross human rights violations in their respective region. The House as well as the State Councils have the power to approve the declaration of State of Emergency in their respective jurisdictions. Such procedure enables the legislative organs to check the appropriateness of the decision of the executive to declare a state of emergency. The legislative organs are also mandated to establish a State of Emergency Inquiry Board to ensure that none of the measures taken by the executive involve inhumane treatment.

215.The House has established the Ethiopian Human Rights Commission and the Institution of Ombudsperson as institutions that are especially mandated to promote and protect human rights with direct accountability to itself. Such structure ensures the independence and integrity of the institutions.

National human rights institutions

The Ethiopian Human Rights Commission

216.The Ethiopian Human Rights Commission was established as an autonomous organ of the government in July 2000. The objectives of the Commission include educating the public about human rights; ensuring that human rights are protected, respected and fully enforced; and taking necessary measure where human rights are found to have been violated. It is established pursuant to the Paris Principles on the Status of National Human Rights Institutions. Accordingly, it maintains autonomous status and is made accountable directly to the House of People’s Representatives. Such structure protects the Commission from any form of influence and interference by the executive.

217.The top leadership of the Commission is composed of the Chief Commissioner, the Deputy Chief Commissioner and the Commissioner for Children and Women Affairs all of which are directly appointed by HPR. The Commissioners and investigators of the Commission are provided with immunity from arrest or detention. They may not be arrested or detained without the permission of HPR or the Chief Commissioner except where they may be caught flagrante delicto for serious offences.

218.The Commission also has different departments and staff members. The Commission has an Executive Director responsible for coordinating its five Departments which are: the Education and Investigation Department; the Human Rights Complaints, Investigation and Protection Department; the Children’s, Women’s and Peoples’ with Disabilities Rights Protection Department, the Plan and International Cooperation Department and Finance Department. The Commission’s financial resource consists of the annual budget allocated by the government as well as various assistances and grants from local and international, governmental and non‑governmental sources.

219.The Commission has been undertaking various activities in promoting, protecting and enforcing human rights since its operational inception. These activities include education and training on the protection of human rights programme (discussed below); human rights protection, complaint and investigation programme (receiving complaints and investigating them, legal consultancy and prison visit); assessing compatibility of the existing legislations with human rights norms; participation in international human rights meetings, conferences and symposia; distribution of books, articles, brochures, leaflets, posters and banners on human rights; coordination of the celebration of the United Nations Human Rights Day at national level. Currently, the Commission is undertaking preliminary study to open branches in some regions of the country.

220.The Commission investigates cases of human rights violations on the basis of complaints submitted to it or on its own initiative. Since its operational inception, it received 2399 complaints and accusations until 13 January 2008 of which it disposed of 2381. The remaining 18 are pending. It has also rendered free legal advice for 222 complainants. Prison visit has been undertaken in over seven police stations and ten prisons to asses the human rights conditions of detainees and prisoners. Some of the problems of the detention centres were resolved while the Commission is still working on solving problems that need the intervention of other government institutions. Such problems include overcrowding of the detention centres and prisons, the size and quality of the cells, inadequate health service provision and the confinement of children with their imprisoned mothers.

221.The Commission is undertaking an assessment of the compatibility of existing domestic laws and policies with international human rights treaties, guidelines and resolutions with the view to amend the existing laws to ensure their compliance with human rights norms or if need be to adopt new legislations and policies that promote and protect human rights.

222.In discharging its role to raise public awareness on human rights, the Commission has distributed 60,000 copies of a booklet on Election and Human Rights in three local vernaculars: Amharic, Oromiffa and Tigrigna, to various institutions and different sections of the society. Two hundred fifty copies of a booklet on Birth Registration prepared in the Amharic language have been distributed to institutions and different sections of the society. Various leaflets and brochures have also been distributed to the public, while posters and banners have been used to sensitize the latter on human rights issues and norms throughout the country.

223.The fifty-eighth anniversary of International Human Rights Day, 10 December 2006 was celebrated for the first time in the country nationwide upon the initiative of the Commission in coordination with other organizations under the motto “every person should promote human rights, and is responsible for avoiding gender based violence, poverty, exploitation and discrimination from all sections of the society and in particularly protect HIV positive women, children, refugees, internally displaced persons, persons with disability”.

224.Currently, the Commission has a Head Office in Addis Ababa. Upon decision by the HPR, the Commission may open branch offices in the regions. The Commission has already prioritized areas where branch offices should be opened and preliminary feasibility studies have been conducted in Affar, Tigray, Oromia and Somalia regional states and report of the study is completed.

The Institution of the Ombudsperson

225.The Institution of the Ombudsperson was established as an autonomous government organ directly accountable to the HPR. By doing so, the integrity of the Institution is guaranteed from the interference of the executive organ of the government. The Institution has a Chief Ombudsperson, a Deputy Chief Ombudsperson and an Ombudsperson heading the children’s and women’s affairs, investigators and other staff. The Ombudspersons and the investigators have immunity from arrest or detention to ensure their independence and smooth functioning.

226.The Institution has departments organized to suit the implementation of its programmes. The Institution’s financial resource consists of the government budget allocated annually as well as assistances and grants from local and international governmental and non-governmental organizations. The Institutions has so far undertaken various activities which primarily consist of promoting its role in bringing good governance with a view to increase public awareness. It has also been engaged in promoting the rights of children, women and persons with disabilities and entertaining complaints of maladministration.

227.The Institution has organized various trainings and workshops on a wide range of topics for a variety of target groups. Education and training programmes have been organized for professional staff of the Institution itself in order to build their capacity. The trainings and workshops were conducted on many themes including the objectives and activities of the Institution, the responsibility of the Institution in the protection of children’s rights and ensuring good governance, the responsibility of the Institution in ensuring good governance, the role of the Institution in the protection of human rights, the objective of the Institution from the perspective of protection of women’s and children’s rights, the protection of the rights of persons with disabilities and the need for the enactment of administrative law. In general, members of the legislature (federal and regional states), officials of the federal and regional states executive organs, members of civil society organizations , police officers of the federal and regional governments, and professionals from the federal and regional governmental and private mass media were target groups of the trainings and workshops. The Institution has been engaged in an extensive awareness raising training programmes- 30 trainings and workshops were conducted in a year and half period- with a view to build the capacity of various professional who in turn would promote good governance and the realization of rule of law.

228.The Institution has particularly been engaged in promoting its objectives and role in addressing administrative malpractices to the wider public by disseminating information regarding its objective, powers and duties; the types of petitions that can be brought before it, the procedure to be followed and the evidence that should be produced to substantiate allegations. Similarly, the Institution has been promoting public awareness through radio, television and magazine announcements and advertisements.

229.With regard to handling complaints of maladministration, the Institution is entertaining numerous complaints and has been commended by the public for its procedural efficacy. However, there remain constraints in respect of adequacy of manpower and material resources.

230.In order to ensure the participation of the public in the administration of the country at different levels, the Institution has designed a mechanism for children to participate in the process of good governance by establishing children parliaments. In September 2006, children’s parliament was established in Konso Woreda, a district in the Southern Region of the country, consisting of 96 children. The parliament has accomplished various tasks including, promoting the increase in the enrolment rate of girls and re-enrolment of drop out students; establishing children’s clubs in some schools; and recommending that the youth be cautious of HIV/AIDS and appealing for the abolition of child labour and exploitation. The parliament has brought problems of children to the attention of the executive. This experience is believed to introduce children to principles of democratic process and good governance that would enable them to run Ethiopia’s state machineries in the future.

231.In June 2007, Speakers of Regional State Council, representatives of regional states executives and representatives of relevant federal governments have underscored the importance of Konso Woreda Children Parliament and urged the establishment of such model parliaments in all regions. Accordingly, Assosa Woreda Model Children Parliament was established in December 9, 2007 in Benishangul - Gumuz Regional State. The trend will hopefully continue to flourish throughout the country. The Institution is also collecting administrative rules and regulations from every government institution in order to asses their compatibility with the Federal Constitution, other laws of the land and principles of good governance.

Dissemination of human rights instruments

232.The Convention on the Rights of the Child is translated to eleven local languages and disseminated to institutions working on child rights as well as to the wider public and remains the widely disseminated international human rights instrument in Ethiopia. It is incorporated into elementary textbooks in some regional states. The Ministry of Justice, in cooperation with the French Embassy in Addis Ababa published a compilation of major regional and international instruments in English during the fiftieth anniversary of the UDHR and made them available free of charge to public prosecutors, law schools and law enforcement officers at various levels. The Ministry of Justice with the financial support of the Norwegian Embassy in Addis Ababa published another compilation of the major international human rights instruments in the Amharic language. The compilation was published in 5,000 copies and distributed to about 4,170 trainees who participated in the extensive human rights training programme organized jointly by the Ministry of Justice and the Norwegian Embassy in Ethiopia. The compilation has been widely distributed through sale and donation to various institutions and professionals. The Ethiopian Human Rights Commission re-published 10,000 copies of the Compilation and has been distributing same to training participants and law enforcement officials.

233.There are also translations and distributions of international human rights and humanitarian law instruments by civil society organizations. In this regard, the translation into local languages and publication of the major international human rights instruments by Ethiopian Human Rights Council; and the translation and publication of the 1949 Four Geneva Conventions and the two Additional Protocols by International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) - Ethiopia, are noticeable efforts. The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees-Regional Liaison Office has also translated the major international human rights instruments into Somali language and distributed them widely among the Somali community.

234.The FDRE Constitution, a third of which contains human rights provisions, has been widely distributed by the House of Federation, the House of Peoples’ Representatives, the Ministry of Justice, and the Ministry of Education. The electronic version of the Constitution is also available on the websites of the House of Federation, the House of Peoples’ Representatives and the Federal Supreme Court.

Trainings and education on the promotion and protection of human rights

235.Recognizing the lack of capacity on the part of the various actors engaged in the implementation of the poverty reduction strategy and other development programmes, and building the democratization process, the Ethiopian government has launched a nationwide capacity building programme. One of this National Capacity Building Programs is the five-year federal programme called the Public Sector Capacity Building Program (PSCAP). PSCAP which was launched in November 2004 was designed with the objectives of improving the scale, efficiency, and responsiveness of the public service delivery at the federal, regional and local levels to empower citizens to participate more efficiently in the economic development of their country as well as to promote good governance and accountability.

236.A Justice System Reform Program (JSRP) is also designed as a subprogramme under PSCAP. Its objective is to promote the rule of law as well as the efficient and effective function of the justice system as part of Ethiopia’s broader democratization and public sector development process. At the designing stage, the justice system reform programme comprised of enhancing the effectiveness of law making organs and affiliated bodies, an efficient delivery of justice by judicial organs, an efficient law enforcement, training of legal professionals and researchers, and putting in place an efficient justice system. During the first implementation year it was realized that the judicial reform programme should be undertaken separately as the judiciary is an independent state organ. Currently, the judicial reform programme is undertaken by the Federal Supreme Court while JSRP is under the Justice and Legal System Research Institute which is accountable to the Ministry of Capacity Building. At regional states level, the JSRP is coordinated by the Capacity Building Bureaus and the judicial reform programmes by the Regional State Supreme Courts of each state.

237.Conducting extensive trainings and education on human rights for legislators, judges, public prosecutors, police officials and prison administration officials is one component of the JSRP. Accordingly, a number of training has been given to the members of the federal and regional parliament by the Ethiopian Human Rights Commission which is the organ responsible for conducting trainings on human rights under the JSRP. In 2006/07, a year after it started functioning, the Commission conducted the following trainings to federal and regional legislators on such topics as introduction to human rights and freedoms, the role of the legislative organs in the promotion and enforcement of human rights, women’s rights and children’s rights.

Trainings given by EHRC, 2006-2007

Participants’ constituencies

No. of members of the legislative organs

No. of other participants

Total

Female

Male

Total

Female

Male

Total

HPR 1st Round

77

100

177

0

5

5

182

HPR 2nd Round

14

213

227

6

14

20

247

SNNPRS State Council

78

302

380

1

21

22

402

Amhara NRS State Council

70

152

222

2

38

40

262

Total

1 093

238.Similar trainings on human rights targeting 877 members of the Council of Tigray, Gambella, Oromia and Benishangul- Gumuz regional states and their staff members have been conducted in the second half of 2007. Journalists have been the beneficiaries of the trainings in respect of their role in the promotion and protection of human rights. One hundred and fourteen reporters and editors of the government and private mass media were trained on the topic mentioned above. Eight hundred and fifty Woreda Election executives were trained on elections and human rights. TV spots promoting human rights have been produced and are now being televised. A project to make schools centres for human rights promotion is designed and ten model schools in Mekelle, the capital of Tigray Regional State and Hawassa, the capital of the SNNPRS are already selected for the implementation of the project. Teachers, students and their parents and administrators of the schools were trained to equip them with the knowledge and skills necessary to implement the project. Moreover trainings on human rights have been given to clan leaders and judges of Sh’aria Courts in Afar and Somali regional states.

239.Under the JSRP, the regional states also undertook successive trainings for the members of their respective State Council, judges, prosecutors, police and prison administration officials. In Tigray, in a training conducted for six days, 142 members of the State Council were trained on topics of human rights and democratization within the context of federalism and the challenges for the implementation of human rights. Within the last two years, 282 prosecutors attended workshops and seminars on the role of prosecutors in the promotion and protection of human rights. In Oromia Regional State, training on the revised Criminal Law from human rights perspective has been given for fifteen days to 980 judges, prosecutors and legal experts. In the SNNPRS, about 1300 police and prison administration officials and about 128 high ranking government officials have received training on the promotion and protection of human rights. In Benishangul – Gumuz Regional State, 40 prison police officials, 100 members of the State Council (twice) and 65 judges were trained on the promotion of human rights and their respective responsibilities in the protection and enforcement of human rights. The trainings mentioned so far are part of those conducted under the auspices of the Capacity Building Bureaus of the regional states through the JSRP.

240.With financial assistance from the Norwegian Government, the Ethiopian government has undertaken a nationwide human rights training for law enforcement officials at different levels with the view of enhancing their competence to enforce human rights norms enshrined in the FDRE Constitution and international human rights instruments ratified by Ethiopia. The project envisaged to train 4000 judges, prosecutors and police officers on national and international human rights standards applicable in the administration of justice. A ten-day training has been conducted in all regions of the State in several rounds. So far 4,300 law enforcement officers have received training and a few more rounds of trainings remain to be conducted. A manual was prepared for the training under the title “Human Rights in the Administration Justice”. The manual covered issues such as the basic features of human rights, the development of human rights, human rights and the Ethiopian legal system, human rights at the pre-trial stage and during trial, as well as the rights of women and children.

241.In addition to the training manual, all the participants were provided with reference materials necessary for enforcing human rights norms. These materials include a copy of the FDRE Constitution and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights in the Amharic language; a compilation in the Amharic language of the major international and regional human rights agreements ratified by Ethiopia and other instruments such as the UN Standard Rules for the Treatment of Prisoners, United Nations Body of Principles for the Protection of all Persons under any Form of Detention or Imprisonment, United Nations Declaration on Basic Principles of Justice for Victims of Crime and Abuse of Power, United Nations Declaration on the Elimination of Violence against Women, United Nations Standard Minimum Rules for the Administration of Juvenile Justice, United Nations resolution on independence of the Judiciary, United Nations Guidelines on the Role of Prosecutors, and United Nations Code of Conduct for Law Enforcement Officials. A reference material on human rights standards applicable during investigation and imprisonment was also distributed to the trainees and made available for sale to the public. Copies of the compilation prepared in Amharic containing the major human rights instruments were also donated to institutions engaged in the protection and promotion of human rights such as the Ethiopian Human Rights Commission and the Institution of the Ombudsperson. The booklet was also made available for sale to the public.

242.A comprehensive impact assessment of the project has not been carried out as yet. However, the feedback gathered from the trainees at the completion of the training sessions, the testimony of their superiors that acclaimed the training, and the early joint assessment made by the Ethiopian and the Norwegian governments indicate that the project has been a success.

243.Presently there is preparation under way by the Federal Government to take over the project by establishing a human rights institute under the Ministry of Justice with the objective, among others, of enhancing the human rights awareness of law enforcement officials. Various government organs have also organized awareness raising activities for their respective professionals on their own initiative from their own budget or with the assistance of outside financial or technical sources.

244.Civics education was introduced into the education system to promote and incorporate the ideals of human rights, democracy and constitutionalism into school curricula in 1993. The civics education curriculum was revised in 2002/03 and a new Civics and Ethical Education, which is based on major social values such as building a democratic system, rule of law, equality, justice, patriotism, responsibility, self-reliance, industriousness, active community participation, and the pursuit of wisdom is adopted across all grade levels. Appropriate textbooks were prepared for each grade and level and teachers were given specialized trainings. As a result, Civics and Ethical Education has started to be taught at the primary, secondary and tertiary level throughout the nation whether in public or private; secular or religious schools.

245.To promote the effectiveness of Civics and Ethical Education, the Ministry of Education has taken different measures so far. The social values of the subject are integrated in all subjects, both at primary and secondary levels, to help students acquire, understand and own the values. Efforts have also been made to build the capacity of teachers who teach Civics and Ethical Education. Moreover, Civics and Ethical Education Clubs have been established in all schools to enable students exercise what they have learned in their class rooms and develop their skills for active participation.

246.The Ethiopian Human Rights Commission has conducted a study on the extent of the incorporation of human rights education in the primary school curricula. The findings were presented and discussed in a forum in which the officials of the Ministry of Education and Regional Education Bureaus, curriculum designers, teachers and professionals of the Commission were participants. A consensus was reached to incorporate more human rights norms into the curricula in the event of the revision of textbooks. Accordingly, a trial programme in 50 (fifty) primary schools has been launched. Currently, the baseline study for expanding the programme to universities and teachers training institutes is being undertaken.

247.In higher educational institutions, the Civics and Ethical Education Course whose large portion consists of topics on human rights and democratization issues, is integrated into the curriculum of every professional programme. This move has familiarized all students with issues of human rights and the building of a democratic system. In addition, it enables them to discharge their professional duties with ethical standards that conform to the basic norms of human rights. Human Rights Law, Public International Law, Ethiopian Constitutional Law, Humanitarian Law, Law and Gender Issues, Family Law, Law of Persons, Criminal Procedure Law are some of the Courses given to law students in the undergraduate legal education programmes.

248.The Justice Professionals Training Center, a governmental training centre for prospective judges and public prosecutors is playing a crucial role in promoting human rights through its training programmes. The Centre has four training programmes: training for nominee judges and prosecutors of High Court, training for nominee judges and prosecutors of Woreda Court, trainings for judges and prosecutors who are serving at different levels and special custom designed trainings. The duration of the first two programmes is two years and the curricula for the programmes have been designed and are in the process of being implemented. The curricula comprise various law courses and are accompanied by practice. Courses such as Human Rights Law, Family Law, Criminal Procedure Law and many other human rights related courses are included in the curricula.

249.The Human Rights Law course is especially designed to give trainees deep insight into the constitutional and international basis of human rights norms, domestic application of human rights law and women’s and children’s rights. The trainees should hold a law diploma or degree in order to be admitted to the programmes. The other two programmes are however, short term training programmes on different legal topics. The Centre has been giving thematic trainings for judges and prosecutors on various human rights issues. In addition, special trainings have been organized on human rights and related issues for judges, prosecutors, police officers and prison administration officials.

Members of the defence forces

250.The Ministry of Defense promotes human rights through the formal military training courses it gives and via the workshops and awareness programmes it conducts through the mass media. The Ministry transmits a regular radio programme whose target audience are members of the military. One of the objectives of the programme is to raise the awareness of the military personnel regarding their roles in the protection and promotion of human rights. Topics covered in the programme include people and the military, prisoners of war, the loyalty of the military to the Constitution and rights and freedoms of citizens, human rights trainings delivered by the ICRC, laws of war, the core values of the military, and lessons on the Constitution.

251.The Ministry also publishes and circulates among members of the military a biweekly newspaper entitled Wugagen (the dawn). The news, articles and columns in the newspaper mainly raise issues related with the protection of the fundamental human rights and freedoms enshrined in the Constitution. Human rights norms such as equality of religion, equality of nations and nationalities, freedom of opinion and other individual and group rights are featured in the paper. There is also a column in the newspaper dedicated to humanitarian law - prepared in collaboration with the ICRC.

252.Various workshops and trainings on human rights have also been given for high ranking military officers, justice professionals of the same, officials having participated in international peace keeping missions, and media workers of the military. Presently, as part of a campaign to educate the military on the norms of international humanitarian law, documentary films of the two world wars have been translated into Amharic and being shown to members of the military.

253.The human rights trainings given at military schools are extensive. Substantive human rights are included in the curricula of all military colleges and institutions. In the lessons, emphasis is placed on the role of the military in the protection of human rights and in the implementation of the laws of war. Pocket-size copies of the Constitution are handed out to all candidates to enable them to study, debate, and fully understand the fundamental human rights of citizens they stand for. Human rights related conferences and seminars are also frequently organized in all military training centres in collaboration with the ICRC.

Development cooperation and assistance

254.There is no definite information on development cooperation and assistance that the country benefits from, for the specific purpose of promoting human rights. However, data on the general assistance that the country gets has been provided.

255.Despite the fact that Ethiopia is a developing country, having limited capacity to extend development assistance to other countries in order to protect and promote human rights, the country has given peacekeeping forces to assist countries in keeping peace within their country, which is crucial for the existence of legal order and the protection of human rights. The Ethiopian peace keeping force has served in Rwanda, Burundi, Liberia and Somalia presenting aid to the countries forces to keep peace and stability within. The country is recently preparing a force to send to Sudan, Darfur for similar purpose. Moreover, Ethiopia is providing development cooperation and assistance to protect and promote human rights in Somalia.

D. Reporting process at the national level

256.A project enabling Ethiopia to honor its international obligations to submit initial and periodic reports to treaty monitoring bodies under different international human rights treaties was initiated by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Ethiopian Human Rights Commission with the technical assistance of United Nations Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (. A National Conference on Ethiopia’s reporting obligations under international human rights instruments was held to this end. The National Conference had adopted long term and short term recommendations. One of the recommendations, to be implemented in the long term, was the adoption of the appropriate legislation to establish a permanent national committee by the Ethiopian government, which should be mandated to supervise the entire reporting process and follow-up of treaty bodies’ recommendations.

257.In the mean time, the Conference recommended the establishment of an ad hoc inter‑ministerial committee and a drafting committee mandated to oversee the drafting and submission of the overdue reports. The former is composed of Ministry of Foreign Affairs as coordinator, Ministry of Justice, Ministry of Finance and Economic Development, Ministry of Federal Affairs, Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs, Ministry of Education, Ministry of Health, Ministry of Defense, Central Statistics Agency and Federal Police Commission. It is mandated to oversee the report preparation process, to coordinate and facilitate data and information collection, to determine the delegation in the presentation of the reports to the relevant treaty bodies, and to oversee the dissemination of the treaty bodies’ recommendations. The Drafting Committee consists of independent legal experts with competence in human rights laws and issues.

258.Different stakeholders including representatives of the federal government ministries and agencies, regional governments, United Nations offices and international and local NGOs participated in the National Conference. The National Conference had been given wide media coverage with the view to raising public awareness about the process and purpose of reporting to treaty bodies. The National Conference played a paramount role in sensitizing stakeholders and the public at large about the need to ensure participatory reporting process.

259.Following the National Conference three specialized trainings on human rights treaty reporting process had been conducted for persons who would be engaged in the reporting process, in gathering information, drafting the initial draft reports, editing and standardizing the final reports as well presenting them before treaty bodies. Experience-sharing has also featured in the finalization of the reports. A member of the drafting committee and one of the Commissioners of the EHRC were able to attend as observers the meetings of the Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination and they shared their experience with the drafting committee, ad hoc committee and the legal experts.

260.Legislatures at different levels, ministries, agencies, authorities, commissions, regional governments, and supreme courts assigned focal persons within their institutions who would facilitate the flow of information between the institutions and the legal experts preparing the reports at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. The legal experts contacted over 400 federal and regional government officials and held several briefing and consultative meetings which ensured the process to be participatory. The legal experts prepared the first draft of the common core document and submitted it to the drafting committee for feedback and additional inputs to come up with the final draft. After the final draft by the Drafting Committee, a consolidation workshop has taken place to ensure the participation of non-governmental organizations. These organizations were given the opportunity to comment on the draft documents both orally and in writing. These comments by NGOs were incorporated in the draft report. Since the EHRC was given by Proclamation No. 210/2000 to comment on human rights reports the Government makes, the final draft, which was approved by the ad hoc committee, was sent to the EHRC for comments. The comments by the EHRC were included in the final reports presented.

E. Follow-up to international conferences

261.Relevant government offices concerned with the theme of the conference participated in International conferences. The participant office will devise a mechanism of follow-up and subsequent review to the declarations, recommendations and commitments adopted at the conference in consultation with other government offices when necessary. For instance the Environmental Protection Authority is vested with the power to participate in world conferences on environmental issues and is also responsible to follow-up the results of such conferences thereof.

IV. INFORMATION ON NON-DISCRIMINATION AND EQUALITY

Equality and non-discrimination

262.The Ethiopian legal system unequivocally guarantees equality before the law and equal protection of the law. Accordingly, the FDRE Constitution states that all persons are equal before the law and are entitled without discrimination to equal protection of the law. In that light, the FDRE Constitution stipulates that the law shall guarantee to all persons equal and effective protection without discrimination on grounds of race, nation, nationality or other social origin, colour, sex, language, religion, political or other opinion, property, birth or other status. Pursuant to the FDRE Constitution, other specific laws have incorporated provisions on equality and non‑discrimination. For example, the Criminal Code of Ethiopia prohibits discrimination on the basis of individual’s social conditions, race, nation, nationality, social origin, colour, sex, language, religion, political or other opinion, property, birth or other status.

263.The FDRE Constitution also provides that its provision on human and democratic rights should be interpreted in line with international treaties to which the country is a party, which means that the provisions on equality and non-discrimination are to be interpreted in a manner conforming to the principles of the UDHR as well to the relevant human rights instruments to which the country is a party.

264.The Constitutions of all the regional states of Ethiopia also guaranteeequality and non‑discrimination in the same way as the FDRE Constitution. Apart from making provisions dealing with equality and non-discrimination, the FDRE Constitution clearly states that all federal and State legislative, executive and judicial organs at all levels shall have the responsibility and duty to respect and enforce the provisions of Chapter Three, providing for fundamental rights and freedoms including the rights to equality and non-discrimination.

265.The Ethiopian Human Rights Commission and the Office of the Ombudsperson would play important roles in addressing human rights violations including the right to equality and non‑discrimination.

266.In an attempt to address the rights to equality of individuals accused of committing crimes, efforts have been made to provide free legal representation to individuals accused of serious crimes, with no resource to secure representation.

267.The Criminal Code of Ethiopia prohibits discrimination on the basis of individual’s social conditions, race, nation, nationality, social origin, colour, sex, language, religion, political or other opinion, property, birth or other status. All actors involved in the enforcement of the Criminal Code such as the courts, prosecution and Police, have the responsibility to enforce the provisions on nondiscrimination. Different institutions play important roles in combating and preventing discrimination in all its forms. Chief among such institutions are: the courts at all levels, the Police, the prosecution, the Council of Constitutional Inquiry, the Human Rights Commission, the Ombudsman and the Anticorruption Commission. As stated earlier, the FDRE Constitution clearly states that all federal and State legislative, executive and judicial organs at all levels shall have the responsibility and duty to respect and enforce the human rights provisions including those providing for the rights to equality and non-discrimination.

268.Ethiopian laws call for specific attention to the human rights of people who for different reasons require special attention such as women, children, persons with disability and the elderly. Despite the multifaceted and significant role women play in the society, they have not been enjoying the fruits of their contribution and lag behind men due to political economic and cultural bias against them in the past. Women have often been considered inferior to men and were subjected to discrimination.

269.To rectify this, the FDRE Constitution has come up with different provisions dealing with the rights of women. Accordingly, the FDRE Constitution has enshrined the right to equality of men and women in the enjoyment of rights and protections provided for by the Constitution as well as the equal rights of women with men in marriage, in employment as well as in property ownership and administration. In addition, the FDRE Constitution has provides for the elimination of customs harmful to women and prohibits laws, customs and practices that oppress or cause bodily or mental harm to women.

270.The FDRE Constitution has also recognized the historical legacy of inequality and discrimination suffered by women in Ethiopia and provides for affirmative measures with a view to remedy the legacy. These measures shall provide special attention to women so as to enable them to compete and participate on the basis of equality with men in political, social and economic life as well as in public and private institutions. The provisions of the FDRE Constitution on economic objectives impose a duty on the government to ensure the participation of women with men in all economic and social development endeavors. The constitutional provision on affirmative action has been translated into practice in different areas such as in employment and entrance to higher learning institutions.

271.The Constitutional provisions dealing with the rights of women have further been elaborated in the specific laws of the country.Chief among these laws are the Revised Family Law, the Criminal Code and the employment laws. The Revised Family Law has brought what may be considered a revolutionary change to parts of the Civil Code dealing with marriage and by abolishing most of the discriminatory provisions of the 1960 Civil Code. The fundamental underpinning of the Revised Family Code is thus the principle of equality of men and women which has been reflected in the different provisions dealing with the relation between the spouses. It, for example, provides that marriage should be based on mutual respect, support and assistance of the spouses, and entitles both spouses to administer and direct their family affairs including the upbringing of their children.

272.At the regional level Amhara, Tigray, and Southern Nations and Nationalities and Peoples National Regional states have similarly adopted their revised family codes based on the principle of equality of women and men.

273.The Revised Criminal Code of Ethiopia, which came into force in May 2005 replacing the 1957 Penal Code, includes new and revised provisions relevant to the protection of women’s human rights in general. Accordingly, the Criminal Code addresses violence against women in its different forms either in the form of elaborating the existing vague provision or by introducing new offences. Furthermore, the Criminal Code has redefined the elements of some existing offences, added aggravating circumstances and revised the penalties applicable in cases of violation.

274.Both the new Labour Proclamation (Proclamation No. 262/2002) and the new Federal Civil Servants Proclamation (Proclamation No. 515/2007), the currently applicable laws governing employment, have fully incorporated equality of men and women in employment and outlawed discrimination in employment on the grounds of, among other things, sex. The Federal Civil Servants Proclamation has actually gone a step further by providing affirmative action in favor of women in employment. Accordingly, priority would be given to female candidates with the same qualification as men to a particular employment.

275.In 1993, a National Policy on Ethiopian Women (NPEW) was adopted by the Transitional Government of Ethiopia. The NPEW was the first policy document showing the intention of the government to promote and protect the rights of women in Ethiopia. The NPEW had made an assessment of the situation of women in Ethiopia and made the conclusion that discrimination against women has been perpetuated in various forms depending on their ethnic background, culture and religion. It further noted that Ethiopian women experience a ban from owning the means of production, are victims of natural as well as man-made disasters, face prejudicial attitudes in the country’s political social and economic life and are still subjected to discriminatory laws. The main objectives of the NPEW include:

(a)Facilitating conditions conducive to speeding up equality between men and women;

(b)Facilitating the necessary conditions whereby rural women can have access to basic social services and to ways and means of lightening their work load;

(c)Eliminating prejudices as well as customary and other practices that are based on male supremacy and enabling women to head public office and participate in decision making process at all levels.

276.The NPEW also states that Government policies, laws and regulations as well as other relevant activities should be guided by the objective of ensuring equality between men and women, with a particular attention to rural women enabling them to equally participate with men in the field of development.

277.The Ethiopian Government in formulating its policy, strategy and programme took due notice of gender mainstreaming. As such, various policies, strategies and programmes adopted by the Government have taken into consideration gender issues. Some of the major policies, strategies and programmes that comprise gender friendly provisions include:

(a)Development and Social Welfare Policy;

(b)Sustainable Development and Poverty Reduction Programme;

(c)Micro and Small Enterprise Development Strategy;

(d)National Agricultural Policy;

(e)Environmental policy;

(f)Population policy;

(g)Health policy;

(h)HIV/AIDS policy;

(i)Comprehensive Education and Training Policy.

278.Similarly, Ethiopia has taken different measures to protect and promote the rights of children. The FDRE Constitution provides for a catalogue of rights of children including the right to life, name and nationality, to know and be cared for by parents or guardians, not to be subject to exploitative practices, to be free from corporal punishment or cruel or inhumane treatment. It also imposes a duty on the Government to allocate resources, within the available means, to provide rehabilitation and assistance to such vulnerable groups as children with no parents or guardians. The Revised Family Code has also come up with several provisions with a view to protecting the rights of children and provides that the overarching principle guiding any decision concerning the family shall be the best interest of the child.

279.With a view to address one of the serious problems affecting persons with disabilities, a specific law providing for the right to employment of persons with disability has been issued. The Law states that persons with disabilities shall have the right to employment without discrimination unless the nature of the work dictates otherwise. It further states that any law, practice, custom, attitude or other discriminatory situation that impairs the equal opportunities to employment of a person with disability are illegal.

280.The FDRE Constitution imposes a duty on the government to allocate resources, within the available means, to provide rehabilitation and assistance to physically and mentally disabled, the aged, and children with no parents or guardians.

281.The Government has recently raised the amount of pension with a view to addressing the peculiar needs of the elderly to meet their socio-economic needs in view of the increased inflation and increasing trend of the prices of commodities.

282.With respect to the advancement in economic and social development, the constitution in its chapter ten imposes duty on the government to provide special assistance to nation, nationalities and peoples least advantaged in economic and social development. To this effect particular law (regulation) are also enacted to implement affirmative support for less developed regions which are Afar, Somali, Gambela, Benishangul Gumuz and pastoral areas in Oromia and Southern Nations and Nationalities and People’s Regions (see annex 5 for chapter ten of the Constitution).

283.The FDRE Constitution also provides the need for special representation of minorities in the parliament where it constitutes twenty (20) seats. Specific proclamations and regulations are promulgated in order to implement this constitutional right. Practically, nations, nationalities and peoples are widely represented in the parliament at the federal and State level, where 20 seats of the parliament is filled by minority groups.

284.The House of the Federation has adopted a new grant formula in 2007 that has taken into account the peculiar needs and circumstances of the less developed Regions. In the area of employment, affirmative action is given to nations and nationalities that are less represented in government offices. This is widely practiced in every government office at the federal and regional level.

285.Affirmative measures are also undertaken in the area of education. Accordingly, a lower admission requirement is designed for a student who has completed high school education in a developing Region and who is native of the nationality of such region or a student from the nationality whose participation in higher education is low. Apart from a special entry privilege, such students would be given a special support during their stay in the institution.

286.The Government, in order to increase primary and secondary education enrolment for children in pastoralist and semi-pastoralist areas, has designed mechanisms such as boarding schools and the Food and Education Programme. It has also established schools for refugees. These measures are believed to have contributed for the increase in the enrolment rate of children.

Annex 1

Demographic indicators

Population size

1.The total projected population of the country for July 2008 is estimated to be 79,221,000, of whom 65,996,000 are rural and 13,225,000 urban.

Table 1

Population size of Ethiopia from 1970-2008

Year

1970

1975

1980

1985

1990

1995

2000

2005

2008

Populatio n (In thousands)

29 488.2

33 085.8

37 684.7

43 350

50 774.1

54 649

63 495

73 044

79 221

Source: CSA, 1994 Census Analytic Report, 1999.

Population growth rate

2.Ethiopian population growth rate was 2.62 per cent per annum in July 2006. There was a slight decline in the population growth rate over the decade, from 2.96 per cent in 1996 to 2.62 per cent in 2006.

Table 2

Estimates of population growth rate

Period

1970-75

1975-80

1980-85

1985-90

1990-95

1995-00

2000-05

2005-10

Growth Rate (%)

2.6

2.8

2.9

3.0

2.9

2.92

2.73

2.62

Source: CSA, 1994 Census Analytic Report, 1999.

Population density

3.Ethiopia’s population density at July 1, 2006 was 68 persons per square kilometer. Addis Ababa had the highest (5,608 persons per km2), followed by Harari and Dire Dawa. Gambella, Benishangul Gumuz, Afar and Somali are sparsely populated regions.

Table 3

Ethiopian population by region, percentage, share and density (1 July 2006)

Regions

Population

% s hare of t otal p opulation

Population d ensity p ersons/ k m 2

Tigray

4 334 996

5.78

87

Afar

1 389 004

1.85

16

Amhara

19 120 004

25.47

120

Oromia

26 553 000

35.37

75

Somalia

4 329 001

5.77

17

Benishangul - Gumuz

625 000

0.84

13

S.N.N.P

14 901 990

19.85

133

Gambella

247 000

0.33

10

Harari

196 000

0.26

630

Addis Ababa

2 973 004

3.96

5 608

Dire Dawa

398 000

0.35

328

Ethiopia

75 067 000

100   

68

Sources:CSA, Statistical Abstract, 2006.

MoFED, Ethiopian Population Images 2006.

Population distribution by mother tongue, religion and ethnicity in rural and urban areas

Language

4.The population distribution by mother tongue and second language spoken is presented in Table 4. According to the data on Table 4, the overwhelming majority (32.7 per cent) of the population use Amharic language as their mother tongue. Oromifa, used by 31.6 per cent of the population, is the second largest language spoken as a mother tongue, followed by Tigrigna with 6.07 per cent. The remaining Ethiopian languages are used by about 29.6 per cent of the population. Only 0.04 per cent of the population use foreign languages as mother tongue.

5.As to second language, figures in Table 4 indicate that 84.2 per cent of the population did not have second language. Amharic is spoken by the highest proportion (9.61 per cent) of the population as second language followed by Oromifa with 2.9 per cent. The remaining Ethiopian languages are spoken as second language by only 2.6 per cent of the population. Only 0.43 per cent of the population spoke foreign languages as second language while 0.24 per cent did not report their second language. In summary about 42.31 per cent of the population speak Amharic either as a mother tongue or as a second language. The corresponding figure for Oromifa language is 34.67 per cent.

Table 4

Distribution of mother tongue and second language, urban and rural, Ethiopia: 1994

Languages

Urban + Rural

Urban

Rural

Mother tongue

Second language

Mother tongue

Second language

Mother tongue

Second language

No.

%

No.

%

No.

%

No.

%

No.

%

No.

%

All persons

53 130 779

100.00

53 130 777

100.00

7 314 74 2

100.00

7 314 74 3

100.00

45 816 037

100.00

45 816 034

100.00

Affarig n a

965 462

1.82

22 848

0.04

23 428

0.32

11 213

0.15

942 034

2.06

11 635

0.03

Ag ew/Awingigna

356 980

0.67

64 425

0.12

17 592

0.24

9 296

0.13

339 388

0.74

55 129

0.12

Agew/Kamyrgna

143 369

0.27

11 026

0.02

5 293

0.07

1 745

0.02

138 076

0.30

9 281

0.02

Amarigna

17 372 913

32.70

5 104 150

9.61

4 129 694

56.46

1 755 511

24.00

13 243 219

28.91

3 348 639

7.31

Anyiwakgna

45 646

0.09

2 114

0.00

10 028

0.14

390

0.01

35 618

0.08

1 724

0.00

Arboriegna

4 441

0.01

3 108

0.01

386

0.01

599

0.01

4 055

0.01

2 509

0.01

Argobigna

10 860

0.02

3 236

0.01

1 870

0.03

875

0.01

8 990

0.02

2 361

0.01

Arigna

158 857

0.30

13 319

0.03

3 273

0.04

3 714

0.05

155 584

0.34

9 605

0.02

Basketigna

57 805

0.11

8 961

0.02

3 005

0.04

1 034

0.01

54 800

0.12

7 927

0.02

Benchigna

173 586

0.33

22 640

0.04

2 469

0.03

1 973

0.03

171 117

0.37

20 667

0.05

Shegna

13 116

0.02

3 514

0.01

21

0.00

17

0.00

13 095

0.03

3 497

0.01

Merigna

989

0.00

75

0.00

18

0.00

11

0.00

971

0.00

64

0.00

Burijgna

35 731

0.07

3 045

0.01

6 981

0.10

1 103

0.02

28 750

0.06

1 942

0.00

Charrigna

6 932

0.01

668

0.00

26

0.00

5

0.00

6 906

0.02

663

0.00

Dasenechgna

32 064

0.06

231

0.00

399

0.01

85

0.00

31 665

0.07

146

0.00

Dimegna

6 501

0.01

529

0.00

330

0.00

77

0.00

6 171

0.01

452

0.00

Dizigna

21 075

0.04

2 054

0.00

2 008

0.03

1 012

0.01

19 067

0.04

1 042

0.00

Ganijuligna

1 390

0.00

196

0.00

25

0.00

6

0.00

1 365

0.00

190

0.00

Gedeogna

637 082

1.20

47 950

0.09

13 578

0.19

4 147

0.06

623 504

1.36

43 803

0.10

Gewadigna

32 698

0.06

1 367

0.00

400

0.01

100

0.00

32 298

0.07

1 267

0.00

Gi doligna

50 328

0.09

1 974

0.00

2 115

0.03

221

0.00

48 213

0.11

1 753

0.00

Guagugna

103

0.00

51

0.00

55

0.00

21

0.00

48

0.00

30

0.00

Gumuzigna

120 424

0.23

4 379

0.01

712

0.01

466

0.01

119 712

0.26

3 913

0.01

Guragigna

1 881 574

3.54

208 358

0.39

334 944

4.58

89 856

1.23

1 546 630

3.38

118 502

0.26

Hadiyigna

923 958

1.74

150 889

0.28

44 324

0.61

15 842

0.22

879 634

1.92

135 047

0.29

Marekogna

36 612

0.07

9 208

0.02

1 624

0.02

414

0.01

34 988

0.08

8 764

0.02

Hamerigna

42 838

0.08

7 120

0.01

318

0.00

595

0.01

42 520

0.09

6 525

0.01

Harerigna

21 283

0.04

7 766

0.01

20 964

0.29

7 453

0.10

319

0.00

313

0.00

Jebelawigna

116 084

0.22

15 738

0.03

3 203

0.04

3 277

0.04

112 881

0.25

12 461

0.03

Fadashigna

8 715

0.02

795

0.00

238

0.00

44

0.00

8 477

0.02

751

0.00

Gamiligna

144

0.00

45

0.00

60

0.00

11

0.00

84

0.00

34

0.00

Gebatogna

78

0.00

52

0.00

12

0.00

8

0.00

66

0.00

44

0.00

Kechamigna

2 682

0.01

223

0.00

58

0.00

6

0.00

2 624

0.01

217

0.00

Keffigna

569 626

1.07

46 720

0.09

38 214

0.52

6 495

0.09

531 412

1.1 6

40 225

0.09

Mochagna

54 894

0.10

3 476

0.01

5 299

0.07

551

0.01

49 595

0.11

2 925

0.01

Kemantigna

1 650

0.00

3 181

0.01

58

0.00

106

0.00

1 592

0.00

3 075

0.01

Kembatigna

487 655

0.92

68 607

0.13

41 441

0.57

6 489

0.09

446 214

0.97

62 118

0.14

Alabigna

126 257

0.24

25 271

0.05

2 152

0.03

1 856

0.03

124 105

0.27

23 415

0.05

Kebenagna

35 783

0.07

4 428

0.01

1 490

0.02

217

0.00

34 293

0.07

4 211

0.01

Timbarogna

82 803

0.16

10 715

0.02

2 718

0.04

419

0.01

80 085

0.17

10 296

0.02

Kewamigna

99

0.00

44

0.00

12

0.00

7

0.00

87

0.00

37

0.00

Komigna

1 435

0.00

148

0.00

51

0.00

9

0.00

1 384

0.00

139

0.00

Konsogna

149 508

0.28

5 658

0.01

2 959

0.04

631

0.01

146 549

0.32

5 027

0.01

Koyrigna

103 879

0.20

2 371

0.00

4 130

0.06

368

0.01

99 749

0.22

2 003

0.00

Kunamigna

1 883

0.00

144

0.00

185

0.00

32

0.00

1 698

0.00

112

0.00

Mabaangna

25

0.00

19

0.00

11

0.00

14

0.00

14

0.00

5

0.00

Maogna

13 657

0.03

527

0.00

70

0.00

24

0.00

13 587

0.03

503

0.00

Meenigna

52 015

0.10

5 958

0.01

1 127

0.02

1 248

0.02

50 888

0.11

4 710

0.01

Bodigna

4 570

0.01

342

0.00

17

0.00

86

0.00

4 553

0.01

256

0.00

Maliegna

53 779

0.10

6 730

0.01

182

0.00

95

0.00

53 597

0.12

6 635

0.01

Mesengogna

15 152

0.03

438

0.00

161

0.00

19

0.00

41 991

0.03

419

0.00

Mosiyagna

6 624

0.01

920

0.00

68

0.00

19

0.00

6 556

0.01

901

0.00

Mursygna

3 278

0.01

34

0.00

10

0.00

8

0.00

3 268

0.01

26

0.00

Naogna

3 656

0.01

1 876

0.00

21

0.00

6

0.00

3 635

0.01

1 870

0.00

Nuwerigna

64 907

0.12

1 122

0.00

3 408

0.05

315

0.00

61 499

0.13

807

0.00

Nyangatomigna

14 177

0.03

123

0.00

37

0.00

3

0.00

14 140

0.03

120

0.00

Oromigna

16 777 976

31.58

1 535 434

2.89

1 267 309

17.33

545 071

7.45

15 510 667

33.85

990 363

2.16

Oydigna

16 597

0.03

4 040

0.01

355

0.00

170

0.00

16 242

0.04

3 870

0.01

Sahogna

22 759

0.04

3 378

0.01

1 599

0.02

315

0.00

21 160

0.05

3 063

0.01

Shekogna

24 106

0.05

4 920

0.01

284

0.00

227

0.00

23 822

0.05

4 693

0.01

Shinashigna

19 734

0.04

2 231

0.00

3 100

0.04

335

0.00

16 634

0.04

1 896

0.00

Shitagna

301

0.00

72

0.00

28

0.00

23

0.00

273

0.00

49

0.00

Sidamigna

1 876 329

3.53

101 340

0.19

35 406

0.48

29 082

0.40

1 840 923

4.02

72 258

0.16

Somaligna

3 187 053

6.00

95 572

0.18

432 172

5.91

26 539

0.36

2 754 881

6.01

69 033

0.15

Surigna

19 622

0.04

212

0.00

32

0.00

34

0.00

19 590

0.04

178

0.00

Tigrigna

3 224 875

6.07

146 933

0.28

609 926

8.34

85 711

1.17

2 614 949

5.71

61 222

0.13

Tsamaigna

8 621

0.02

1 200

0.00

135

0.00

88

0.00

8 486

0.02

1 112

0.00

Welayitigna

1 231 673

2.32

89 801

0.17

102 631

1.40

20 171

0.28

1 129 042

2.46

69 630

0.15

Dorzigna

20 782

0.04

3 597

0.01

18 285

0.25

3 475

0.05

2 497

0.01

122

0.00

Gamogna

690 069

1.30

24 438

0.05

38 771

0.53

12 837

0.18

651 298

1.42

11 601

0.03

Goffigna

233 340

0.44

33 449

0.06

17 470

0.24

6 476

0.09

215 870

0.47

26 973

0.06

Kontigna

48 987

0.09

2 920

0.01

2 532

0.03

195

0.00

46 455

0.10

2 725

0.01

Kulogna

313 228

0.59

19 996

0.04

17 996

0.25

2 300

0.03

295 232

0.64

17 696

0.04

Mellogna

20 151

0.04

4 657

0.01

200

0.00

49

0.00

19 951

0.04

4 608

0.01

Yem s agna

81 613

0.15

4 356

0.01

6 733

0.09

544

0.01

74 880

0.16

3 812

0.01

Zeysigna

10 172

0.02

1 017

0.00

283

0.00

33

0.00

9 889

0.02

984

0.00

Zerguligna

7 625

0.01

1 798

0.00

36

0.00

4

0.00

7 589

0.02

1 794

0.00

Other eth. lang.

139 047

0.26

24 447

0.05

7 621

0.10

3 757

0.05

131 426

0.29

20 690

0.05

English

1 986

0.00

169 726

0.32

1 700

0.02

156 492

2.14

286

0.00

13 234

0.03

Other foreign languages

20 418

0.04

58 372

0.11

15 259

0.21

30 403

0.42

5 159

0.01

27 969

0.06

Not stated

4 083

0.01

126 705

0.24

1 607

0.02

45 494

0.62

2 476

0.01

81 211

0.18

No second language

44 759 260

84.24

4 414 774

60.35

40 344 486

88.06

Source: CSA, 1994 Census Analytic Report, 1999.

Note: Mother tongue, in this Table, is a language used by a person for communication with his/her family members or guardians during childhood; whereas “second language” is additional language used by respondents. If the respondent uses more than one additional language, the one used more frequently is recorded.

Religion

6.Religion is an affiliation with a group having specific religious and spiritual tenet. Table 5 shows the classification of the population of Ethiopia by sex and religion.

7.According to the census (1994) result the overwhelming majority (50.6 per cent) of residents of Ethiopia are orthodox Christians. Next to orthodox Christians are Muslims with 32.8 per cent. Protestants comprise 10.2 per cent of the total population of the country. Followers of traditional religion constitute 4.6 per cent. Followers of Catholic Christianity (0.9 per cent) and other religions are very small. The religious composition of the population in urban and rural areas resembles that of the country, except for followers of traditional religion that was about 5.3 per cent in rural and only 0.2 per cent in urban areas.

8.The data on Table 6 show modest variation in religious composition of residents by region. Orthodox Christians reside in all regions with a proportion varying from 95.4 per cent in Tigray to 0.9 per cent in Somali region. The proportion of Muslims ranges from 98.8 per cent in Somali region to 4.1 per cent in Tigray region.

Table 5

Distribution of population by religion and sex

Religion

Total

Male

Female

No.

%

No.

%

No.

%

Urban + Rural

All persons

53 130 781

100.0

26 732 559

100.0

26 398 222

100.0

Orthodox

26 877 660

50.6

13 378 379

50.0

13 499 281

51.1

Protestant

5 405 107

10.2

2 693 955

10.1

2 711 152

10.3

Catholic

459 548

0.9

230 945

0.9

228 603

0.9

Muslim

17 412 431

32.8

8 935 205

33.4

8 477 226

32.1

Others

478 226

0.9

242 276

0.9

235 950

0.9

Traditional

2 455 053

4.6

1 229 743

4.6

1 225 310

4.6

Not stated

42 756

0.1

22 056

0.1

20 700

0.1

Urban

All persons

7 314 746

100.0

3 530 110

100.0

3 784 636

100.0

Orthodox

5 064 417

69.2

2 373 339

67.2

2 691 078

71.1

Protestant

395 652

5.4

193 924

5.5

201 728

5.3

Catholic

46 698

0.6

23 243

0.7

23 455

0.6

Muslim

1 758 398

24.0

914 170

25.9

844 228

22.3

Others

26 037

0.4

13 326

0.4

12 711

0.3

Traditional

17 635

0.2

8 937

0.3

8 698

0.2

Not stated

5 909

0.1

3 171

0.1

2 738

0.1

Rural

All persons

45 816 035

100.0

23 202 449

100.0

22 613 586

100.0

Orthodox

21 813 243

47.6

11 005 040

47.4

10 808 203

47.8

Protestant

5 009 455

10.9

2 500 031

10.8

2 509 424

11.1

Catholic

412 850

0.9

207 702

0.9

205 148

0.9

Muslim

15 654 033

34.2

8 021 035

34.6

7 632 998

33.8

Others

452 189

1.0

228 950

1.0

223 239

1.0

Traditional

2 437 418

5.3

1 220 806

5.3

1 216 612

5.4

Not stated

36 847

0.1

18 885

0.1

17 962

0.1

Source: CSA, 1994 Census Analytic Report, 1999.

Table 6

Percentage distribution of population by religion and region, Ethiopia: 1994

Regions

Religion

Orthodox

Protestant

Catholic

Muslim

Others

Traditional

Not stated

Total

Tigray

95.4

0.0

0.4

4.1

0.0

0.0

0.1

100.00

Affar

3.8

0.4

0.1

95.7

0.0

0.0

0.0

100.00

Amhara

81.4

0.1

0.0

18.4

0.0

0.0

0.0

100.00

Oromiya

41.3

8.6

0.6

44.3

1.0

4.2

0.1

100.00

Somali

0.9

0.1

0.1

98.8

0.0

0.1

0.0

100.00

Benishangul-Gumuz

34.8

5.8

0.5

44.1

1.5

13.1

0.1

100.00

SNNP

27.6

34.8

3.0

16.7

2.4

15.4

0.1

100.00

Gambella

24.1

44.0

3.2

5.1

12.7

10.3

0.5

100.00

Harari

38.1

0.9

0.5

60.2

0.1

0.0

0.2

100.00

Addis Ababa

82.0

3.9

0.8

12.7

0.6

0.0

0.1

100.00

Dire Dawa Prov. Admi.

34.5

1.5

0.7

63.1

0.1

0.0

0.1

100.00

Total No.

26 877 657

5 405 106

459 550

17 412 430

478 225

2 455 052

42 758

53 130 778

%

50.6

10.2

0.9

32.8

0.9

4.6

0.1

100.00

Source: CSA, 1994 Census Analytic Report, 1999.

Ethnic composition

9.Ethiopia is home to about 80 ethnic groups that vary in population size from more than 18 million people to less than 100.

10.Ethnic identity of a person is traced through his/her ethnic origin. Distribution of ethnic groups by sex is presented in Table 7. The Oromo is the largest ethnic group constituting 32.1 per cent of the population of the country. Amhara comprise 30.1 per cent, Tigray 6.2 per cent, and Somali 5.9 per cent. Other ethnic groups constitute 7.9 per cent of the total population while only 0.2 per cent are foreigners.

11.In urban areas, Amhara, Oromo, Tigray, Guragie and Somalie form the largest ethnic groups in size in a given order. As regards rural areas, the situation has different picture. Here Amhara stood second next to Oromo, while Somalie and Tigray follow.

12.Regarding regional distribution of ethnic groups, figures in Table 8 show that Oromo is the largest ethnic group in Oromia and Harari Regions and Dire Dawa City Administration. Amhara ethnic group is also the largest in Amhara Region and Addis Ababa.

Table 7

Distribution of ethnic groups by sex, urban and rural, Ethiopia, 1991

Ethnic group

Urban + rural

Urban

Rural

Total

Male

Female

Total

Male

Female

Total

Male

Female

No.

%

No.

%

No.

%

All persons

53 132 276

100.0

26 733 855

26 398 421

7 315 687

100.0

3 531 031

3 784 656

45 816 589

100.0

23 202 824

22 613 765

Affar

979 367

1.8

557 973

421 394

29 879

0.4

16 644

13 235

949 488

2.1

541 329

408 159

Agew/Awingi

397 491

0.7

198 011

199 480

25 347

0.3

11 571

13 776

372 144

0.8

186 440

185 704

Agew/Kamyr

158 231

0.3

79 679

78 552

9 257

0.1

3 956

5 301

148 974

0.3

75 723

73 251

Amara

16 007 933

30.1

7 968 988

8 038 945

3 104 997

42.4

1 417 145

1 687 852

12 902 936

28.2

6 551 843

6 351 093

Anyiwak

45 665

0.1

21 912

23 753

10 037

0.1

5 080

4 957

35 628

0.1

16 832

18 796

Arboric

6 559

0.0

3 235

3 324

824

0.0

409

415

5 735

0.0

2 826

2 909

Argoba

62 831

0.1

31 450

31 381

10 958

0.1

5 190

5 768

51 873

0.1

26 260

25 613

Ari

155 002

0.3

77 793

77 209

3 808

0.1

2 240

1 568

151 194

0.3

75 553

75 641

Basketo

51 097

0.1

25 418

25 679

3 249

0.0

1 664

1 585

47 848

0.1

23 754

24 094

Bench

173 123

0.3

85 300

87 823

3 106

0.0

1 750

1 356

170 017

0.4

83 550

86 467

She

13 290

0.0

6 463

6 827

74

0.0

44

30

13 216

0.0

6 419

6 797

Mer

1 270

0.0

591

679

62

0.0

29

33

1 208

0.0

562

646

Burji

46 565

0.1

23 294

23 271

13 020

0.2

6 658

6 332

33 545

0.1

16 636

16 909

Charra

6 984

0.0

3 586

3 398

34

0.0

19

15

6 950

0.0

3 567

3 383

Dasenech

32 099

0.1

16 544

15 555

450

0.0

303

147

31 649

0.1

16 241

15 408

Dime

6 197

0.0

3 066

3 131

307

0.0

207

100

5 890

0.0

2 859

3 031

Dizi

21 894

0.0

10 530

11 364

2 439

0.0

1 129

1 310

19 455

0.0

9 401

10 054

Felasha

2 321

0.0

1 100

1 221

2 098

0.0

985

1 113

223

0.0

115

108

Ganjule

1 146

0.0

538

608

37

0.0

15

22

1 109

0.0

523

586

Gedeo

639 905

1.2

320 561

319 344

15 523

0.2

8 615

6 908

624 382

1.4

311 946

312 436

Gewada

33 971

0.1

16 916

17 055

893

0.0

450

443

33 078

0.1

16 466

16 612

Gidole

54 354

0.1

26 531

27 823

3 920

0.1

1 996

1 924

50 434

0.1

24 535

25 899

Guagu

173

0.0

94

79

110

0.0

63

47

63

0.0

31

32

Gumuz

121 487

0.2

62 067

59 420

1 048

0.0

679

369

120 439

0.3

61 388

59 051

Guragie

2 290 274

4.3

1 144 275

1 145 999

667 630

9.1

360 280

307 350

1 622 644

3.5

783 995

838 649

Hadiya

927 933

1.7

464 391

463 542

60 221

0.8

31 096

29 125

867 712

1.9

433 295

434 417

Mareko

38 096

0.1

19 511

18 585

2 425

0.0

1 278

1 147

35 671

0.1

18 233

17 438

Hamer

42 466

0.1

21 142

21 324

399

0.0

287

112

42 067

0.1

20 855

21 212

Harari

21 757

0.0

10 588

11 169

21 146

0.3

10 293

10 853

611

0.0

295

316

Jebelawi

118 530

0.2

59 833

58 697

3 592

0.0

2 041

1 551

114 938

0.3

57 792

57 146

Fadashi

7 323

0.0

3 567

3 756

276

0.0

155

121

7 047

0.0

3 412

3 635

Gamili

186

0.0

107

79

68

0.0

41

27

118

0.0

66

52

Gebato

75

0.0

38

37

26

0.0

14

12

49

0.0

24

25

Kechama

2 740

0.0

1 364

1 376

59

0.0

26

33

2 681

0.0

1 338

1 343

Keffa

599 188

1.1

293 371

305 817

48 551

0.7

22 042

26 509

550 637

1.2

271 329

279 308

Mocha

53 897

0.1

26 088

27 809

5 069

0.1

2 437

2 632

48 828

0.1

23 651

25 177

Kemant

172 327

0.3

86 906

85 421

6 715

0.1

2 711

4 004

165 612

0.4

84 195

81 417

Kembata

499 825

0.9

251 677

248 148

56 324

0.8

29 548

26 776

443 501

1.0

222 129

221 372

Alaba

125 900

0.2

63 596

62 304

3 507

0.0

1 812

1 695

122 393

0.3

61 784

60 609

Kebena

35 072

0.1

17 744

17 328

2 177

0.0

1 240

937

32 895

0.1

16 504

16 391

Timbaro

86 510

0.2

42 289

44 221

3 037

0.0

1 472

1 565

83 473

0.2

40 817

42 656

Kewama

141

0.0

64

77

41

0.0

20

21

100

0.0

44

56

Koma

1 526

0.0

768

758

100

0.0

53

47

1 426

0.0

715

711

Konso

153 419

0.3

76 049

77 370

5 054

0.1

2 765

2 289

148 365

0.3

73 284

75 081

Koyra

107 595

0.2

54 332

53 263

5 900

0.1

3 371

2 529

101 695

0.2

50 961

50 734

Kunama

2 007

0.0

985

1 022

248

0.0

129

119

1 759

0.0

856

903

Mabaan

23

0.0

11

12

17

0.0

7

10

6

0.0

4

2

Mao

16 236

0.0

8 048

8 188

88

0.0

46

42

16 148

0.0

8 002

8 146

Me’en

52 815

0.1

27 018

25 797

1 310

0.0

711

599

51 505

0.1

26 307

25 198

Bodi

4 686

0.0

2 257

2 429

52

0.0

31

21

4 634

0.0

2 226

2 408

Malie

46 458

0.1

24 105

22 353

214

0.0

155

59

46 244

0.1

23 950

22 294

Mesengo

15 341

0.0

7 688

7 653

182

0.0

136

46

15 159

0.0

7 552

7 607

Mossiya

9 207

0.0

4 652

4 555

306

0.0

151

155

8 901

0.0

4 501

4 400

Mursi

3 258

0.0

1 645

1 613

14

0.0

9

5

3 244

0.0

1 636

1 608

Nao

4 005

0.0

1 951

2 054

14

0.0

3

11

3 991

0.0

1 948

2 043

Nuwer

64 534

0.1

33 398

31 136

3 052

0.0

1 648

1 404

61 482

0.1

31 750

29 732

Nyangatom

14 201

0.0

7 024

7 177

51

0.0

45

6

14 150

0.0

6 979

7 171

Oromo

17 080 318

32.1

8 542 318

8 538 000

1 629 735

22.3

793 666

836 069

15 450 583

33.7

7 748 652

7 701 931

Werji

20 536

0.0

10 206

10 330

13 188

0.2

6 455

6 733

7 348

0.0

3 751

3 597

Oyda

14 075

0.0

7 224

6 851

440

0.0

236

204

13 635

0.0

6 988

6 647

Saho

23 275

0.0

11 472

11 803

1 866

0.0

941

925

21 409

0.0

10 531

10 878

Sheko

23 785

0.0

11 785

12 000

341

0.0

197

144

23 444

0.1

11 588

11 856

Shinasha

32 698

0.1

16 236

16 462

3 826

0.1

1 945

1 881

28 872

0.1

14 291

14 581

Oyda

14 075

0.0

7 224

6 851

440

0.0

236

204

13 635

0.0

6 988

6 647

Saho

23 275

0.0

11 472

11 803

1 866

0.0

941

925

21 409

0.0

10 531

10 878

Sheko

23 785

0.0

11 785

12 000

341

0.0

197

144

23 444

0.1

11 588

11 856

Shinasha

32 698

0.1

16 236

16 462

3 826

0.1

1 945

1 881

28 872

0.1

14 291

14 581

Shita

307

0.0

144

163

41

0.0

26

15

266

0.0

118

148

Sidama

1 842 314

3.5

937 367

904 947

37 660

0.5

20 536

17 124

1 804 654

3.9

916 831

887 823

Somalie

3 160 540

5.9

1 726 538

1 434 002

420 146

5.7

224 411

195 735

2 740 394

6.0

1 502 127

1 238 267

Suri

19 632

0.0

9 731

9 901

56

0.0

31

25

19 576

0.0

9 700

9 876

Tigraway

3 284 568

6.2

1 615 265

1 669 303

688 849

9.4

322 222

366 627

2 595 719

5.7

1 293 043

1 302 676

Tsamay

9 702

0.0

5 196

4 506

319

0.0

187

132

9 383

0.0

5 009

4 374

Welaita

1 269 216

2.4

631 029

638 187

128 516

1.8

64 924

63 592

1 140 700

2.5

566 105

574 595

Dorzie

28 990

0.1

18 482

10 508

26 021

0.4

16 657

9 364

2 969

0.0

1 825

1 144

Gamo

719 847

1.4

360 118

359 729

57 692

0.8

31 657

26 035

662 155

1.4

328 461

333 694

Goffa

241 530

0.5

120 496

121 034

16 967

0.2

8 345

8 622

224 563

0.5

112 151

112 412

Konta

49 627

0.1

23 967

25 660

2 448

0.0

1 132

1 316

47 179

0.1

22 835

24 344

Kulo

331 483

0.6

162 311

169 172

26 544

0.4

12 538

14 006

304 939

0.7

149 773

155 166

Mello

20 189

0.0

10 038

10 151

1 706

0.0

842

864

18 483

0.0

9 196

9 287

Weyito

1 631

0.0

820

811

463

0.0

230

233

1 168

0.0

590

578

Yemsa

165 184

0.3

82 087

83 097

10 475

0.1

4 789

5 686

154 709

0.3

77 298

77 411

Zeysie

10 842

0.0

5 583

5 259

538

0.0

287

251

10 304

0.0

5 296

5 008

Zergula

390

0.0

186

204

78

0.0

38

40

312

0.0

148

164

Other eth. national groups

107 073

0.2

55 519

51 554

11 160

0.2

5 754

5 406

95 913

0.2

49 765

46 148

From different parents

26 770

0.1

13 577

13 193

20 562

0.3

10 256

10 306

6 208

0.0

3 321

2 887

Eritreans

61 857

0.1

31 625

30 232

36 928

0.5

18 542

18 386

24 929

0.1

13 083

11 846

Djebutians

367

0.0

186

181

357

0.0

181

176

10

0.0

5

5

Somalians

24 726

0.0

12 865

11 861

20 090

0.3

10 463

9 627

4 636

0.0

2 402

2 234

Kenyans

134

0.0

75

59

101

0.0

54

47

33

0.0

21

12

Sudanese

2 035

0.0

1 366

669

1 661

0.0

1 139

522

374

0.0

227

147

Other foreigners

16 302

0.0

8 650

7 652

14 883

0.2

7 872

7 011

1 419

0.0

778

641

Not stated

5 827

0.0

3 271

2 556

2 688

0.0

1 584

1 104

3 139

0.0

1 687

1 452

Source: CSA, 1994 Census Analytic Report, 1999.

Table 8

Percentage distribution of major ethnic groups with 500,000 or more persons by region, Ethiopia, 1994

Ethnic group

Regions

Tigray

Affar

Amhara

Oromiya

Somalie

Gumuz

SNNP

Gambella

Hararai

Addis Ababa

Dire Dawa Prov. Admi.

Total

No.

%

Affar

0.2

92.0

0.0

0.0

0.0

0.0

0.0

0.0

0.0

0.0

0.0

979 368

1.8

Amara

2.6

4.4

91.2

9.1

0.7

22.2

3.0

7.7

32.6

48.3

27.7

16 007 934

30.1

Gedeo

0.0

0.0

0.0

1.0

0.0

0.0

4.4

0.0

0.0

0.0

0.0

639 905

1.2

Guragie

0.0

0.2

0.0

1.3

0.1

0.1

15.9

0.4

3.2

17.5

4.5

2 290 274

4.3

Hadiya

0.0

0.2

0.0

0.2

0.0

0.5

8.4

0.6

0.0

0.4

0.5

927 935

1.7

Keffa

0.0

0.0

0.0

0.2

0.0

0.0

5.3

4.2

0.0

0.1

0.0

599 187

1.1

Oromo

0.1

0.8

3.0

85.0

2.2

12.8

2.0

6.5

52.3

19.2

48.0

17 080 318

32.1

Sidama

0.0

0.0

0.0

0.1

0.0

0.0

17.5

0.0

0.0

0.1

0.0

1 842 314

3.5

Somalie

0.0

0.0

0.0

0.6

95.7

0.0

0.0

0.0

1.7

0.2

13.9

3 160 541

5.9

Tigraway

94.8

0.8

0.3

0.4

0.0

0.9

0.2

1.6

1.7

7.6

1.8

3 284 567

6.2

Welaita

0.0

0.5

0.0

0.2

0.0

0.1

11.7

0.2

0.1

0.5

0.2

1 269 216

2.4

Gamo

0.0

0.0

0.0

0.0

0.0

0.0

6.7

0.0

0.0

0.9

0.0

719 846

1.4

Other eth.national group

1.3

1.1

5.4

1.8

0.5

63.5

24.8

78.7

8.2

3.0

2.2

4 219 643

7.9

Foreigners

1.9

0.1

0.0

0.0

0.6

0.0

0.0

0.0

0.1

2.0

0.9

105 420

0.2

Not stated

0.0

0.0

0.0

0.0

0.0

0.0

0.0

0.0

0.1

0.1

0.1

5 828

0.0

Total

100.0

100.0

100.0

100.0

100.0

100.0

100.0

100.0

100.0

100.0

100.0

53 132 296

100.0

Source: CSA, 1994 Census Analytic Report, 1999.

Age composition

13.The age structure of the population of Ethiopia, which is typical for a developing country, is characterized by much higher proportion at young ages and low proportion at older ages, reflecting the prevailing high fertility rate. The population aged less than 15 years make up 47.1 per cent of the total population and those at old age group (> 65 years old) constitute 3.2 per cent for the year 2005. The proportion of the population age 15-64 years constitute 49.6 per cent of the total population in 2005.

14.The age-sex composition showed variation by urban and rural areas. The age-sex pattern of the rural population resembles that of the country. The age-sex pattern for urban population is different from the rural area. Overall sex ratio for 2005 is 9 to 8, showing excess of females over males.

Table 9

Distribution of total population by age group, sex, sex ratio, urban and rural areas: 2005

Age group

Urban + rural

Urban

Rural

Total

Male

Female

Sex ratio

Total

Male

Female

Sex ratio

Total

Male

Female

Sex ratio

All ages

63 228 598

31 281 390

31 947 208

98.0

8 974 597

4 238 194

4 736 403

89.0

54 254 001

27 043 196

27 210 805

99.0

100

100

100

100.0

100.0

100.0

100.0

100.0

100.0

0-4

19.1

19.8

18.4

105.0

11.6

12.4

10.9

102.0

20.3

21.0

19.7

106.0

5-9

16.0

16.6

15.5

104.0

11.9

12.4

11.4

98.0

16.7

17.2

16.3

105.0

10-14

12.0

12.5

11.4

107.0

12.3

12.5

12.2

92.0

11.9

12.6

11.3

110.0

15-19

10.6

10.3

10.8

94.0

15.9

16.0

15.8

91.0

9.7

9.5

9.9

95.0

20-24

8.0

7.2

8.7

81.0

10.8

10.1

11.4

79.0

7.5

6.7

8.3

81.0

25-29

7.4

6.6

8.2

79.0

9.2

8.4

10.0

75.0

7.1

6.4

7.9

80.0

30-34

5.6

5.6

5.6

97.0

6.2

6.3

6.1

93.0

5.5

5.4

5.5

98.0

35-39

5.0

4.8

5.1

93.0

5.8

5.7

5.8

88.0

4.9

4.7

5.0

94.0

40-44

3.7

3.6

3.7

94.0

4.0

4.2

3.8

99.0

3.6

3.5

3.7

93.0

45-49

3.3

3.2

3.4

91.0

3.4

3.4

3.4

89.0

3.3

3.2

3.4

91.0

50-54

2.5

2.4

2.7

88.0

2.4

2.2

2.5

79.0

2.5

2.4

2.7

89.0

55-59

1.9

1.9

1.8

101.0

1.8

1.7

1.9

83.0

1.9

1.9

1.8

105.0

60-64

1.7

1.8

1.7

107.0

1.6

1.5

1.7

77.0

1.8

1.9

1.6

113.0

65 +

3.2

3.6

2.9

123.0

3.2

3.1

3.2

85.0

3.3

3.7

2.8

131.0

Source: CSA, 1994 Census Analytic Report, 1999.

Figure 1

Age-sex distribution of the population, country total: 2005

Source: CSA, 2005 National Labour Force Survey, 2006.

Dependency ratio

15.The dependency ratio, the number of the people under age 15 and over age 65 years in relation to the productive age group (15-64 ages) is very high. In 2006, every 100 persons in the productive ages had to support 85 dependants for their basic and other needs. When the dependency ratio is disaggregated, the youth dependency and old dependency ratios are 80 and 5, respectively. This shows that the high dependency burden is contributed mainly by child dependency which is generated by rapid population growth.

Table 10

Projected trends in dependency ratio (per cent)

Age

Indicator

1995

2000

2005

2006

<15

Young age

83.8

82.2

79.5

85

65+

Old age

6.6

5.6

5.2

5

>15 and <65

Young+Old

90.4

87.8

84.7

80

Source: CSA, 1994 Country Level Population and Housing Census Analytical Report, 1999 NOP, Population Profile of Ethiopia, 1999.

Crude birth rate

16.Crude birth rate is the number of births per 1,000 populations during specified period. Crude birth rate per 1,000 in 2000 was 39.9 and slightly declined in 2005 to 36.89.

Figure 2

Projected trends in crude birth rate (medium variant)

Source: NOP, Population Profile of Ethiopia, 1999.

Crude death rate

17.Although there has been a declining trend in all causes of mortality and improvements in the health sector service provisions systems, mortality level still remains high. The crude death rate has shown modest decline in the last two decades.

Figure 3

Trends in crude death rate

Source: NOP, population profile of Ethiopia, 1999.

Life expectancy

18.Life expectancy at birth refers to the average number of years a new born infant can expect to live under current mortality levels. Life expectancy at birth in 2006 was 48 years for males and 50 years for females. Female life expectancy is about two years higher than male life expectancy. Over the decade, life expectancy for both males and females did not improve.

Table 11

Estimated trends in life expectancy at birth

Year

Male

Female

Total

1990-1995

49.8

51.8

50.7

1995-2000

50.9

53

52

2000-2005

53.4

55.4

54

2006

48

50

49

Source: NOP, Population Profile of Ethiopia, 1999. PRB, World Population Data Sheet, 2006.

Fertility rate

19.Total fertility rate refers to the total number of births a women would have by the end of her childbearing period if she were to pass through those years bearing children at the currently observed age specific fertility rates. The total fertility rate for Ethiopia was 5.4 births per women in 2005. Fertility is considerably higher in rural areas than urban areas. The fertility rate in the rural area is 6.0, which is two and half times higher than the total fertility rate in urban areas (2.4). The overall age pattern of fertility indicates that childbearing begins early. Fertility is low among adolescents and increases to a peak of 241 births per 1,000 among women age 25-29 and declines thereafter.

20.There are substantial differentials in fertility among regions, ranging from a low of 1.4 children per woman in Addis Ababa to a high of 6.2 children per woman in Oromia. With the exception of Oromia, Somali and SNNP, fertility levels in the other regions are less than the national average.

21.The level of fertility is inversely related to women’s educational attainment, decreasing rapidly from 6.1 children among women with no education to 2.0 children among women who have at least some secondary education. Fertility is also associated with wealth quintile. Women in the lowest wealth quintile have a total fertility rate of 6.6, twice as high as that of women in the highest quintile (3.2).

Table 12

Current fertility rates

Age-specific and total fertility rate, the general fertility rate and the crude birth rate for the three years preceding the survey, by residence, Ethiopia 2005

Age group

Residence

Total

Urban

Rural

15-19

35

122

104

20-24

105

260

228

25-29

133

261

241

30-34

101

253

231

35-39

58

178

160

40-44

28

94

84

45-49

14

38

34

TFR (15-49)

2.4

6.0

5.4

GFR

77

200

179

CBR

23.4

37.3

35.7

Note: Age-specific fertility rates are per 1,000 women.

Rates for age group 45-49 may be slightly biased due to truncation.

TFR: Total fertility rate for ages 15-49, expressed per woman.

GFR: General fertility rate (births divided by the number of women age 15-44), expressed per 1,000 women.

CBR: Crude birth rate, expressed per 1,000 population.

Source: Ethiopia demographic and health survey, 2005.

Average household size

22.Table 13 shows the distribution of households by the sex of the head of household and by the number of household members in urban and rural areas.

23.Households in Ethiopia are predominantly male headed, a common feature of most African countries. More than one in five households are headed by women, with the proportion of female-headed household much higher in urban than in rural areas.

24.The average household size observed in the survey in 2005 is 5 persons, which is slightly higher than the 2000 Ethiopia demographic and health survey (4.8 persons). Rural households have 5.2 persons per household and are larger than the urban households (4.2 persons). Single‑person households are more common in urban areas (13 per cent) than in rural areas (4 per cent). Only 7 per cent of households have nine or more members.

Table 13

Household composition

Per cent distribution of households by sex of head of household and by household size, according to residence, Ethiopia 2005

Characteristic

Residence

Total

Urban

Rural

Household headship

Male

61.4

79.9

77.2

Female

38.6

20.1

22.8

Total

100.0

100.0

100.0

Number of usual members

1

13.0

3.7

5.0

2

13.0

8.4

9.0

3

16.4

13.4

13.8

4

17.6

15.3

15.7

5

14.4

17.2

16.8

6

10.5

14.6

14.0

7

6.4

11.9

11.1

8

3.9

7.7

7.2

9+

4.8

7.8

7.4

Total

100.0

100.0

100.0

Number of households

1 974

11 747

13 721

Mean size

4.2

5.2

5.0

Note: Table is based on de jure members, i.e., usual residents.

Source:Ethiopia demographic and health survey, 2005.

Proportion of population in rural and urban areas

25.In Ethiopia, population distribution is highly uneven. The overwhelming majority (83.3 per cent) resides in rural areas. Only 16.7 per cent of the population is urban dweller.

Table 14

Ethiopian population by residence and percentage share

Residence

1994

2000

2005

2008

Population size

Percentage share

Population size

Percentage share

Population size

Percentage share

Population size

Percentage share

Urban

7 315 680

13.8

9 473 000

14.92

11 675 000

16

13 225 000

16.7

Rural

45 816 577

86.2

54 022 000

85.08

61 369 000

84

65 996 000

83.3

Total

53 132 257

100

63 495 000

100

73 044 000

1000

79 221 000

100

Source: CSA, 1994 Census Analytical Report, 1999.

CSA, Statistical Abstract, 2007.

Annex 2

Social, economic and cultural indicators

Household expenditure

1.One of the dimensions of well-being is the monetary dimension of poverty called lack of opportunity or material deprivation. The income dimension of poverty is measured by real consumption expenditure since in most developing countries income report of households is likely to be understated compared to consumption expenditure report.

Table 15

Household expenditure

Item

1995/96

1999/2000

2004/05

Rural

Urban

Total

Rural

Urban

Total

Rural

Urban

Total

Real total expenditure   per capita

1 035

1 411

1 088

995

1 453

1 057

1 147

1 909

1 256

Real total expenditure   per adult

1 250

1 693

1 312

1 261

1 751

1 327

1 422

2 260

1 541

Kcal consumed per   day per adult

1 938

2 050

1 954

2 723

1 861

2 606

2 806

2 387

2 746

Share of food in total   expenditure

0.6

0.56

0.60

0.67

0.53

0.65

0.57

0.50

0.56

Household size

5.1

4.7

5.0

4.9

4.6

4.9

4.9

4.3

4.8

Adult equivalent   household size

4.2

3.9

4.2

3.9

3.8

3.9

4.0

3.6

3.9

Gini coefficient   (consumption)   (per cent)

27

34

29

26

38

28

26

44

30

Source: The 2007 Annual Ministerial Level Substantive Review of the ECOSO-Voluntary National Report, June 2007.

2.The level of real total per capita household consumption expenditure stood at 1,256 Birr (US$ 146) in 2004/05 with food accounting for 577 Birr and the rest 678 Birr for non-food. Compared to that of 1999/00, real total per capita household consumption expenditure increased by 19 per cent in 2004/05, which is mainly due to an increase in real non-food expenditure by 50 per cent. In 2004/05, real per capita food expenditure declined by 6 per cent compared to 1999/00 and by 5 per cent against that of 1995/96. The decline in real food expenditure was witnessed mainly in rural areas. This is in part due to higher food-inflation, which is computed to be 34 per cent from 1999/00 to 2004/05. Similarly the share of food in total expenditure declined from 65 per cent in 1995/96 to 56 per cent in 2004/05.

3.However, the national average level of calorie consumed per adult is higher in 2004/05 (2,746.4 kilocalorie per day per adult) than the level indicated during the previous two surveys: 1995/96 and 1999/00. The corresponding level in 1995/96 and in 1999/00 was estimated

at 1,954.0 and 2,606.2 kilocalorie per adult equivalent, respectively. This perhaps could be that, in 2004/05, households have shifted to cheaper calorie sources when food became relatively expensive.

4.The level of real total per adult household consumption expenditure, which is used to calculate poverty, was 1,542 Birr. This magnitude is higher than the level in 1999/00 and 1995/96 by about 16 per cent and 17 per cent in real terms, respectively. This is tantamount at least to overall increase in material welfare over the years.

5.According to the 2004/5 Household Income, Consumption and Expenditure Survey, the largest expenditure grouping is food with the share of 56 per cent of the total expenditure. Housing, water and fuel account for the second largest component of expenditure with 18.1 per cent and clothing and footwear is the third largest component share of expenditure.

Inequality

6.As indicated by the Gini Coefficient relating to consumption expenditure, inequality has increased consistently over time in urban areas from 0.34 in 1995/96 to 0.38 in 1999/00 and further to 0.44 in 2004/05 while inequality has not changed in rural areas over the period. The Gini coefficient for rural consumption is almost identical with that of the Gini coefficient for national level consumption.

Total poverty

7.According to the 2004/05 HICES, the proportion of poor people (poverty head count index) in the country is estimated to be 38.7 per cent in 2004/05. In 2004/05, while the proportion of the population below the poverty line stood at 39.3 per cent in rural areas, it is estimated to be 35.1 per cent in urban areas. Both the statistical test and the stochastic dominance analysis confirmed that urban areas have lower poverty than that of rural areas indicating that poverty is still more of a rural phenomenon. However, over time the gap in poverty between rural and urban areas is narrowing. Compared to 1999/2000, proportion of poor people has declined by 12 per cent which indicate a substantial decline in poverty during the five-year period ending in 2004/05.

8.Much of the decline in national poverty is attributed to a decline in poverty in rural areas. The head count, poverty gap, and poverty severity indices in 2004/05 for rural areas are lower by 13 per cent, 31 per cent, and 41 per cent, respectively than the levels in 1999/00. The difference in the indices between 2004/05 and 1999/00 is statistically significant. In general, the significant decline in rural poverty is clearly attributed to the wide-ranging and multi-faceted pro-poor programmes that have been implemented in rural areas such as menu based extension programmes to support marketization of smallholder agriculture; the food security programmes; and the recent productive safety net programmes among others.

9.The decline in urban poverty between 2004/05 and 1999/2000 was only limited to the depth and severity of poverty. The decline in urban poverty gap and severity could be attributed to government policies indicated in sector development programmes as articulated in the SDPRP as well as the on-going efforts waged by the Government to creating favorable environment for private sector investment and job creations in urban areas.

10.The decline in relative aggregate measures such as poverty head count indices may not give a complete picture of poverty situation overtime unless it is complemented by the trends in the absolute number of poor people. Overall, at national level, the absolute number of poor people declined from 28,063,909 in 1999/00 to 27,523,414 in 2004/05. In other words, the number of poor people has declined by about 2 per cent from 1999/00 to 2004/05.

Food poverty

11.In 2004/05, 38 per cent of the population was below the food poverty line. This showed that the food poverty index declined by 9 per cent from 1999/00 (42 per cent). Poverty reduction and its ultimate eradication being the overriding development agenda of the government, on‑going programmes/ interventions in pro-poor sectors such as rural development, food security, water, health and education, seem to have contributed to the decline in food poverty.

12.When food poverty is decomposed into rural and urban areas, it is found that both rural and urban food poverty head count index has declined by 7 per cent and 25 per cent respectively, although the decline in the food poverty head count index for rural areas is not statistically significant.

Unemployment rate

13.The survey result reveals that in March 2005 there were 1,653,685 unemployed persons, out of whom males were 427,915 and females were 1,225,770. This means that the rate of unemployment in the current status approach for urban areas of the country is 20.6 per cent. Unemployment rate for rural areas is only 2.6 per cent. Unemployment rate for the male and female are 13.7 per cent and 27.2 per cent, respectively. This indicates unemployment is more of a problem for females than males.

14.The result depicts that unemployment rate is highest in Addis Ababa City Administration (31.2 per cent) followed by Gambela Region (25.6 per cent) and Dire Dawa Administrative Council (23.9 per cent). Whereas the unemployment rate for SNNP, Amhara and Oromia regions are found to be lowest. The highest discrepancy between female unemployment rate (22.8 and 18.0 percentage point) are observed in Gambela and Dire Dawa Administrative Council.

15.In 1994 Population and Housing Census, the urban unemployment rate was 22 per cent and then increased to 26.4 per cent in 1999 (CSA, 1997, 2000). The unemployment rate as registered in the Urban Biannual Employment and Unemployment surveys of October 2003 and April 2004 were 26.2 per cent and 22.9 per cent, respectively. In the March 2005 NLFS survey (National Labour Force Survey, 2005), the rate has declined to 20.6 per cent. The decline in unemployment could be attributed to either creation of jobs or shift from unemployment to inactive status.

Table 16

Unemployment rate

Variables

Total unemployed population

Unemployment rate

Total

Male

Female

Total

Male

Female

National

1 653 685

427 915

1 225 770

5.0

2.5

7.8

Urban

894 177

292 709

601 468

20.6

13.7

27.2

Rural

759 508

135 206

624 302

2.6

0.9

4.6

Regions

Tigray

110 711

34 220

76 491

5.3

3.3

7.4

Afar

12 003

3 104

8 899

11.4

5.2

19.5

Amhara

293 367

71 496

221 871

3.2

1.5

5.2

Oromia

533 502

114 889

418 613

4.1

1.7

6.9

Somalia

32 080

11 128

20 952

11.1

7.1

15.9

Benishangul -   Gumuz

15 734

4 135

11 599

4.4

2.2

6.6

S.N.N.P

241 031

42 933

198 098

3.5

1.2

5.9

Gambella

2 480

688

1 792

25.6

14.2

37.0

Harari

12 899

4 021

8 878

16.8

10.2

23.8

Addis Ababa   City Admi.

361 964

130 021

231 736

31.2

22.5

39.8

Dire Dawa   Council

37 915

11 073

26 842

23.9

14.6

32.8

Source: Report on the 2005 National Labour Force Survey, CSA May 2006.

Industrial division of the employed population

16.Table 17 presents the percentage distribution of currently employed population aged ten years and over by major industrial divisions, sex, urban and rural areas of the country. Overall, agriculture, which includes crop production, animal husbandry, hunting, forestry and fishing make up 80.2 per cent of all industries of the employed person. Similarly from the total of all employed persons in rural areas, 88.5 per cent were engaged in agricultural activities. Ninety‑two per cent of rurally-employed males were engaged in these activities while 83.6 per cent of females of rurally employed were hired in this sector.

17.On the other hand, 21.8 per cent of the employed persons in urban areas were engaged in the wholesale and retail trades, followed by manufacturing (14.3 per cent) and hotel and restaurant (10.8 per cent). Higher proportion of females than males in urban areas participated in the wholesale and retail trade, manufacturing and hotel and restaurant industrial divisions compared to male counter part. The gap is particularly wide in hotel and restaurantindustry - 3.4 per cent for males and 19.2 per cent for females.

Table 17

Currently employed population aged ten years and above by sex, major industrial divisions, urban and rural areas (country total): 2005

Major industrial division

Urban + rural

Urban

Rural

Total

Male

Female

Total

Male

Female

Total

Male

Female

Agriculture, hunting, forestry and   fishing

80.2

84.3

75.5

13.0

15.9

9.6

88.5

92.7

83.6

Mining and quarrying

0.3

0.3

0.2

0.5

0.7

0.3

0.2

0.3

0.2

Manufacturing

4.9

2.6

7.5

14.3

13.2

15.5

0.7

1.3

6.5

Construction

1.4

2.1

0.7

5.4

8.3

2.1

0.9

1.3

0.5

Wholesale & retail trade, repair of   vehicles, personal and household   goods

5.2

3.9

6.8

21.8

20.3

23.4

3.2

1.9

4.7

Hotels & restaurants

2.5

0.6

4.6

10.8

3.4

19.2

1.4

0.2

2.8

Transport and communication

0.5

0.8

0.1

3.5

5.9

0.7

0.1

0.2

0.0

Financial inter-mediation

0.1

0.1

0.1

1.1

1.1

1.0

0.0

0.0

0.0

Real estate, renting business and   activities

0.2

0.2

0.1

1.4

1.8

0.9

0.0

0.1

0.0

Public administration, defense,   compulsory social security

1.2

1.4

0.9

7.1

9.1

4.8

0.4

0.5

0.4

Education, health, and social work

1.2

1.3

0.9

6.5

7.2

5.7

0.5

0.6

0.4

Other social, cultural, personal and   household activities

1.4

1.8

0.9

7.6

10.3

4.6

0.6

0.8

0.5

Private households with employed   persons

0.8

0.1

1.6

5.9

1.1

11.3

0.2

0.0

0.3

Extra-territorial organizations and   bodies

0.2

0.3

0.2

0.7

0.9

0.4

0.2

0.2

0.1

Not stated

0.0

0.0

0.0

0.1

0.1

0.1

0.0

0.0

0.0

Source: Report on the 2005 National Labour Force Survey, CSA May 2006.

Employment to population ratio

18.Employment to Population Ratio is calculated as a percentage of total employment to that of the total working age population. According to the data in Table 18, the employment to population ratio for the country is reported to be 76.7 per cent. This means about 77.0 per cent of the total population of the country aged ten years and above were working during the reference period. The employment (male) to population (male) ratio is 84.7 per cent, which is substantially higher than the ratio for females (69 per cent).

19.The proportion employed in rural areas (82 per cent) is substantially higher than urban areas (50.2 per cent). The illiterate had higher working population (81.4 per cent) as compared to literate population (68.7 per cent). Apparently, in the 2005 NLFS the highest employment to population ratio was observed for Amhara and SNNP regions, (80.5 and 79.8 per cent), respectively. The lowest employment to population ratio was recorded for Harari Region (38.1 per cent).

Table 18

Employment to population ratio

Background variables

Total population

Total employed population

Employment to population ratio

Total

Male

Female

Total

Male

Female

Total

Male

Female

Country

41 018 088

19 908 690

21 109 398

31 435 108

16 860 264

14 574 844

76.6

84.7

69.0

Urban

6 867 045

3 185 720

3 681 325

3 446 092

1 838 313

1 607 779

50.2

57.7

43.7

Rural

34 151 043

16 722 970

17 428 073

27 989 016

15 021 951

12 967 065

82.0

89.8

74.4

Literacy Status

Literate

15 477 691

9 816 315

5 661 376

10 638 271

7 615 191

3 023 080

68.7

77.6

53.4

Illiterate

25 540 397

10 092 375

15 448 022

20 796 836

9 245 072

11 551 764

81.4

91.6

74.8

Regions

Tigray

2 682 727

1 261 203

1 421 524

1 963 356

1 011 124

952 232

73.2

80.2

67.0

Affar

143 432

72 309

71 123

93 064

56 364

36 700

64.9

77.9

51.6

Amhara

10 917 015

5 368 956

5 548 059

8 791 120

4 752 810

4 038 310

80.5

88.5

72.8

Oromia

15 999 486

7 872 142

8 127 344

12 396 534

6 724 541

5 671 993

77.5

85.4

69.8

Somali

391 667

192 265

199 402

257 198

146 581

110 617

65.7

76.2

55.5

Benishangul- Gumuz

462 675

221 003

241 672

345 214

181 905

163 309

74.6

82.3

67.6

SNNP

8 265 977

3 928 745

4 337 232

6 597 567

3 434 222

3 163 345

79.8

87.4

72.9

Gambella

18 878

9 279

9 599

7 196

4 147

3 049

38.1

44.7

31.8

Harrari

110 767

53 014

57 753

63 845

35 361

28 484

57.6

66.7

49.3

Addis Ababa City Admin.

1 800 669

822 427

978 242

799 562

448 258

351 304

44.4

54.5

35.9

Dire Dawa   Adm.   Council

224 796

107 348

117 448

120 453

64 951

55 502

53.6

60.5

47.3

Source: Report on the 2005 National Labour Force Survey, CSA May 2006.

Gross domestic product

20.Ethiopia’s social and economic activities showed encouraging results since the early 1990s. The government has done well in terms of achieving economic stability and keeping inflation low. The Ethiopian economy has registered encouraging but mixed results with negative real GDP growth rate of 3.7 and 2.0 in 1997/98 and 2002/03 respectively, as a result of the impact of Ethiopia‑Eritrea war for the former while drought was the cause for the latter. The

years following the war have marked continued economic growth until the eve of the drought year. After 2002/03, a strong positive performance of 11.8 per cent, 12.7 per cent, 11.8 per cent and 11.3 per cent during the subsequent four years was registered. In 2007/08, the economy is projected to register a growth rate of 10.1 per cent. During the years 2000/01 to 2006/07, the economy registered average growth rate of 6.7 per cent, which is above the average of 5.8 per cent realized in Sub‑Saharan African countries. An average real GDP growth rate of 11.9 per cent was registered between 2003/04-2006/07.

21.Even though the agricultural sector continued to be major driver of the economy, the recent expansion has been broad with significant contribution from manufacturing, construction and service sectors. Although the growth of agriculture value added declined by 11.4 per cent following the drought in 2002/03, due to the prevalence of favorable conditions including adequate rain and provision of adequate supply of agricultural inputs, agricultural production increased by 17.3 per cent, 13.4 per cent, 10.9 per cent and 9.4 per cent in the following four years respectively. During the same period, the industrial and service sectors registered a consistent average growth rate of 10.6 and 11.5 respectively. The 2007/08 agricultural sector growth rate is expected to be 7.5 per cent, while 12 per cent and 14 per cent are for industrial and service sectors respectively.

22.Inflation, which was on average in single digits for most of 2003/04 and 2004/05, had accelerated by the end of 2005/06 and remained high at 12.3 per cent. It rocketed in 2006/07 and remained high at 17.6 per cent. As of March 2008, a record of 19 per cent has been registered. The causes of such ever growing inflation are varied and complex. One of the main causes for the current rate of inflation is price increases in the global market. Since the price of domestically produced goods is inevitably linked to the global market, international price increases not only affect the price of imports, but also country is paying premium prices. The additional costs for the transportation and other areas compound the problem. The additional cost on most products is up by 30 per cent or more than the production cost in the countries of origin. Based on this, sufficient local production of some major import items avoids transport and related cost, thus minimizing the impact of global inflation. In fact, efforts are already underway to locally produce in sufficient quantity.

23.Reducing transport and related costs will help to control inflation but, this will not prevent price increases as long as global prices remain high. Since global price increases are unlikely to change in the short and medium term, the only sustainable solution is to increase people’s income. It is with this conviction that the government has given priority to efforts aimed at realizing rapid economic growth and has taken various measures to increase the income of the population including that of civil servants.

24.These two measures are significant in ensuring lasting solutions and deserve utmost attention but they also have their limitations, like the length of time necessary for implementation. Therefore, the government is taking appropriate temporary measures to minimize the burden on the public to the extent possible. These measures include direct and indirect subsides. The former includes government expenditure to stabilize fuel prices and provision of wheat and edible oil for low-income population for lower cost. The latter includes the government indirect support of withdrawing duty levied on imported cement which allows the construction sector with its significant work force to continue to flourish. In addition, the government has lifted Value Added Tax and Turn-Over Tax on grains.

Table 19

Macroeconomic performance indicators

Variables

1997/98

1998/99

1999/00

2000/01

2001/02

2002/03

2003/04

2004/05

2005/06

2006/07

2007/08

Total GDP at 1999/00 Constant Prices

56 375.8

59 330.2

62 907.8

67 552.4

68 417.6

67 049.8

74 945.8

84 443.2

94 392.8

105 044.9

116 337.6

      Agriculture and       Allied Activities

29 161.6

30 152.4

31 073.0

34 063.5

33 424.7

29 920.2

34 990.2

39 728.8

44 062.6

48 225.8

51 842.7

      Industry

6 927.0

7 307.0

7 697.7

8 091.4

8 765.0

9 332.6

10 419.4

11 402.3

12 561.0

13 943.4

15 616.6

      Services

20 287.2

21 870.8

24 137.1

25 397.4

26 227.9

27 797.0

29 536.2

33 312.1

37 769.1

42 875.7

48 878.3

GDP at Constant Market   Prices

59 748.2

62 832.6

66 648.3

72 181.1

73 274.4

71 690.9

81 421.1

91 044.1

100 928.8

112 134.4

124 377.1

Annual Growth Rate at   1999/00 Constant Prices

-3.7

5.2

6.0

7.4

1.3

-2.0

11.8

12.7

11.8

11.3

10.8

      Agriculture and       Allied Activities

-9.6

3.4

3.1

9.6

-1.9

-10.5

16.9

13.5

10.9

9.4

7.5

      Industry

5.2

5.5

5.3

5.1

8.3

6.5

11.6

9.4

10.2

11.0

12.0

      Services

3.2

7.8

10.4

5.2

3.3

6.0

6.3

12.8

13.4

13.5

14.0

Annual Growth Rate at   Constant Market Prices