We mourn the death of Adhanom Gebremariam
Adhanom was a veteran of the liberation struggle and a military commander.
He left his university studies in his third year to join the armed struggle for Eritrean independence in 1972.
Adhanom was elected to the central committee of the EPLF.
After the independence of Eritrea he served as governor of Seraye province [now part of the “Debub” Zone]. He went on to be Eritrean ambassador to Nigeria and Scandinavia.
He was a member of the dissident group, the G15, consisting of senior government and party officials who protested against the autocratic rule of Isaias Afwerki. He continued that struggle in exile until he passed away a few days ago.
In an eight volume Tigrinya essay entitled: The Warsay Yikealo Campaign: A Campaign of Slavery, he aptly summarised how the government/party and the military have dominated the economy of Eritrea.
The result has been exodus of tens of thousands of young people and impoverishment of the economy. (RIP)
• All means of production, including land are owned by the government.
• All media outlets are owned by the government.
• All financial institutions are under party and government ownership.
• All major hotels and amusement places are party and government owned.
• All major manufacturing firms are owned by the party and government.
• Party owned construction companies dominate the market.
• Both land and maritime transport is under government ownership.
• Private businesses have been marginalised/eliminated.
• Citizens are queuing day and night in front of party-owned shops for basic essentials.
• All fertile land has been snatched by military officers.
• Land that belongs to local communities is being sold to those with access to foreign currency.
• All fisheries resources are owned by an Egyptian businessman and the president.
• All old and new major industries belong to the government and the party.
• All productive labour is controlled by the military, party and the government.
• All trade is now monopolised by party owned companies.
• Farmers are not allowed to sell their produce to markets in Asmara or elsewhere. Instead, they must sell to the government owned grain board.
• The PFDJ (party) even owns hairdresser saloons.
• Army officials are chasing away poor women from selling vegetables in the streets. Instead, they are retailing their own produce with the use of their military conscript slaves.
• They even sell confiscated charcoal in the retail market.
From: THE NATIONAL ECONOMY IN AN INTEGRATED REGION: PROSPECTS OF ECONOMIC RECOVERY IN ERITREA (Eritrea Focus 2020).