Listros are part of Ethiopian Society

by Dawit Shanko

Published in the June 2013 edition of the German Ethiopian Association

In a time of unprecedented opportunity and global interconnectedness, Ethiopians, Africans, and global actors further afield are starting to acknowledge the self-determination and entrepreneurial spirit that is instilled in the young Ethiopian democracy, from the lower echelons of society to the very peak. The government has taken critical steps to fight poverty and to build an image of a diverse and vibrant African country, and the country plays host to major international businesses and organizations, among them, the African Union headquarters. Of course, the rush to development has had negative side effects and setbacks – at time due to misguided policy - and the country has relied more on outside support than on its own inner strength. As a result, this country is globally known more for its problems than for its history, thought helpless because of its perceived dependent.

This has brought, however, a positive development in that more and more Ethiopians in Ethiopia and abroad are contributing their voices and ideas in the hopes of bringing about positive change in the country; in short, these processes of modernization are fostering a nascent democratic culture that portends the opportunity to bring about real change through inclusive dialogue with all levels of the society and its diaspora. To make this a reality, we have to acknowledge that the road of development was, is, and will always stay, a rough road, but, with commitment and support, this country can be a strong player in international society. Dialogue will be a key to this success.

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