Seven Days Update, Vol. 20 No. 36
Five more officials of the Ethiopian Revenue and Customs Authority (ERCA) have been arrested by police, pending investigation. The five were indicted previously without being arrested. They have been denied the right to follow their trial without being in prison. Their offences have been found to be so serious that they may face prison terms of up to ten years (Reporter , Oct. 30).
The Federal Ethics & Anti-Corruption Commission (FEACC) on dropped corruption charges it filed against seven defendants in Melaku Fenta et al case. All defendants freed are officials of the Ethiopian Revenue and Customs Authority (ERCA) who were charged in one of the indictment files alongside Melaku Fenta, former ERCA director general, and former deputy, Gebrewahid Gebretsadik. The commission sited its legal right to withdraw charges against defendants without providing details. Accepting the prosecution’s application for their removal from the list of defendants in the charge, the 15th Criminal Bench ordered their immediate release (WIC, Nov. 4).
The Ministry of Industry signed a contract agreement amounting to 1.8bio Birr with 15 companies for the construction of the Bole Lemi industry zone. Some 15 buildings and roads will be constructed in the industry zone which covers an area of 156 ha. The 14 local companies will construct the buildings while the Chinese company will build the road. Five buildings were built in the first phase of the construction of the industry zone during the 2005 budget year. The zone is among the four industry zones planned to be built during the Growth and Transformation Plan period. Industry Minister Ahmed Abitew said the construction of the industry zone would help attract more foreign investors. He also urged the contractors to complete the construction on schedule. State Minister Sisay Gemechu added the buildings built in the first phase have become operational (state media, Nov. 1).