Source: Eritrea Watch
Eritrean social media pages have, for the last few weeks, been awash with the news coming out of Eritrea. The Assassination Attempt of Gen. Sebhat Efrem! Details of the incident are sketchy and one had to depend on anonymous sources, and to an extent on a hear say for details of the incident.
Who is the General
General Sebhat Efrem is the current Minister of Mines of the country Eritrea. He is a well known for his role as the commander of the gorilla army during the liberation of Eritrea from Ethiopia. He is best Known for his skilful leadership and personality.
In the internal politics of the EPLF (the liberation army), however he is known for his staunch loyalty and support of the current President of Eritrea. The now totalitarian dictator, has dominated the Pre and Post history of Eritrea. With that part of history, known for its secrecy, betrayal, foul plays and even disappearances – the General is well known to have taken the side of the movement leader, now dictator.
After Eritrean independence, he has fallen out of favour with his boss. Sidelined to be a Minster of Health, yet remained loyal. In the Coupé d’etat attempt of the 2013, commonly known as the Operation Forto, coming to the rescue of his boss once again. Historically, he is considered as loyal subject and a snitch to the dictator in power.
Leading to incident
Unexplained decisions and incidences, have people believe the Assassination Attempt was no coincidence of sorts. The public blieves, this was no work of an individual, as the unofficial report indicates; or doesn’t indicate.
– Anonymous sources, and confirmed by at least one relative, have described security apparatus on the hunt for certain people who happen to be His former staff at the Ministry of Defence. Those people would be hunted and arrested in the two weeks leading up to the incident. The name Col. Wunesh, comes up in all sources, though the number of people arrested is believed to be about fifteen or more.
– In the days leading up to the incident, the Municipality is said to have checked and pounded dogs which have not been vaccinated. They concentrated more at the vicinity where the General is residing.
– More mysterious incidences are to follow two days before the said incident. The security detail of the General’s residences are given a break and would not report for duty in the area.
– On the day of the Assassination Attempt, there is to be a power outage in the area of residence.
The Assassination – failed attempt
Anonymous witnesses confirmed the assailant was captured by passersby and handed over to security. He allegedly sneaked in to the residences, taking advantage of the darkness caused by the power outage on the evening. It is believed he was armed with a gun, a silencer, as no gun shot is heard by neighbours. He is to shoot the General once on the head, but the gun malfunctioned before shooting second time.
Details of the assailant and his wherebouts after capture are sketchy. Some sources claim he is from a military division assigned to guard the unofficial residences of the President, at Adi Halo.
Suicide followed by – a failed Coupé d’etat
The president of the country, Isayas Afwerki, is said to be under immense pressure to reform. Specially after the peace deal he signed in July with Ethiopia. He should feel a revolt from his ranks on how he handled the peace process with Ethiopia. The president has been in power for almost 28 years, he finds his safety net in holding on to power. Though many attempts to topple him, the knowns and unknowns, he should feel the current crisis poses a greater threat to his power. In September, when he travelled to Saudi Arabia to sign a new agreement with Ethiopia, he took his son – Abraham Isayas – with. This act would create crisis, even with in his support group, that he was about to groom his son for the position as a successor. That by all means seemed, his plan B.
General Sebhat Efrem, even during the struggle for independence, was known for his charming character and witty skills of negotiation. He has managed to outmaneuver opponents, yet without making so many enemies. For external players, like the US, he has come across as a person with a unifying influence, solid support base in the army and better communication counterpart. It is believed he has also voiced concern with the president’s handling of the recent peace process with Ethiopia.
All this seems to make the President more irrelevant. The president could not stand the idea, the General would be considered as a potential successor. On the most recent visit by a delegation from US, it is believed they inquired about the General’s attendance. Request was rejected by the President.
Speculation is rife, the failed Assassination Attemp, was was pre-empted, and with pre-manufactured reasons meant to persuade many of the General’s supporters and the public – this was a failed Coupé d’etat followed by suicide.
Post Assassination Attempt
After the incident, the General was flown to a hospital in Dubai, UAE. It is believed authorities in Dubai only learnt the importance of the person under treatment after few days. They are to make a security arrangement, after voicing dismay with the Ambassador of Eritrea in UAE. Contrary to other reports that stated he was not accompanied by anybody, sources confirm three people flew alongside him. The wife, a doctor and a party Official, who goes by the nick named Kisha.
He is believed to be in a stable condition. Sources claim even though he has started to communicate, his full recovery seems a long upheaval.
As of yet, there is no Official clarification on the part of the government about the General’s assassination attempt.
Nor his Progress.
It’s a developing story….