Wednesday, June 19, 2024

Ethiopian Airlines Group assumes management role for Ethiopia’s New Legacy Lodges

Ethiopian Airlines Group, Africa’s leading airline, announced that it had signed a memorandum of understanding with the Office ofthe Prime Minister for the management and operation of the ‘Dine for Ethiopia’ lodges under Ethiopian Skylight Hotel. 

Under the terms of this strategic partnership, Ethiopian Skylight Hotel will assume responsibility for operating and managing the Chebera Churchura Elephant Paw Lodge, Halala Kella Lodge, Gorgora Eco-lodge and Wonchi Eco-Lodge.

The partnership aims to elevate the tourism experience in Ethiopia through utilizing Ethiopian Airlines Group’s extensive expertise in the hospitality industry, ensuring the provision of unparalleled services to visitors.

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Commenting on the signing ceremony, Ethiopian Airlines Group CEO Mesfin Tasew said, “Tourism and air transport services are closely related industries. In addition to transporting passengers and cargo, Ethiopian Airlines has been working at a high level to promote tourism in our country. We are delighted to join hands with the Prime Minister’s Office to elevate the hospitality experience in Ethiopia. Ethiopian Airlines Skylight hotel is renowned for its commitment to excellence, and we are excited to extend our expertise to these remarkable lodges.”

(The Reporter)

Mastercard partners with the Cooperative Bank of Oromia

Mastercard has announced its partnership with the Cooperative Bank of Oromia in order to launch optimized solutions and boost financial inclusion in Ethiopia. 

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Following this announcement, the Cooperative Bank of Oromia and Mastercard launched Coopbank Prepaid Mastercard and introduced the Community Pass technology for customers and businesses in the region of Ethiopia. The initiative is expected to optimize digital and financial inclusion across the country, in particular for smallholder farmers. 

In addition, both financial institutions will focus on meeting the needs, preferences, and demands of customers and clients in the market, while also prioritizing the process of remaining compliant with the regulatory requirements and laws of the local industry. 

Throughout this partnership, both the Cooperative Bank of Oromia and Mastercard will continue their shared commitment to development and accessibility. 

The CoopbankMastercard was designed in order to offer a secure and efficient card management solution tailored for international travelers and to promote ease and safety in global and cross-border transactions. The prepaid card is set to allow clients to make purchases internationally online, while also ensuring accessibility and convenience wherever Mastercard is accepted, including multiple digital platforms and ecommerce sites.

In addition, payments will be easy to make through a dedicated mobile application, which is expected to provide efficient card management capabilities. The initiative represents a part of a five-year strategic agreement to expand financial tools and foster economic growth within the region of Ethiopia.

The Mastercard Community Pass technology is set to accelerate digital inclusion in rural and underserved areas. Farm Pass represents a digital service that is offered through Community Pass, and it is expected to enable farmers and agricultural cooperatives to digitally and securely connect to the agriculture marketplace, as well as gain access to secure and efficient financial services, even in offline environments. 

At the same time, the collaborative efforts between Mastercard and the Cooperative Bank of Oromia are part of a robust strategy to make a positive impact on the lives of several customers and individuals by driving economic inclusion, as well as leveraging technology to meet the diverse needs of Ethiopia’s population. 


Feds warn Boeing of criminal charges after airliner ‘failed’ to improve plane safety following 737 crashes

Federal officials warned Boeing about criminal charges after the airline failed to improve plane safety and adhere to a settlement after deadly 737 aircraft crashes, prosecutors said

Five years ago, Boeing agreed to pay USD 2.5 billion and make safety improvements after two new 737 Max jets crashed in separate incidents, within the space of five months, one in Indonesia in 2018 and one in Ethiopia in 2019, killing a total of 346 people.

But, now the feds claim that Boeing has violated that deal and it could face further prosecution after a string of high-profile safety incidents involving its planes, including an incident in mid-January when an Alaska Airlines Boeing 737 MAX 9’s door plug blew off, causing the grounding of all 171 MAX 9 jets by the FAA while it investigated.

“For failing to fulfill completely the terms of and obligations under the [deferred prosecution agreement], Boeing is subject to prosecution by the United States for any federal criminal violation of which the United States has knowledge,” Department of Justice lawyers wrote in a letter to a federal judge.

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It is now up in the air as to whether Boeing could face prosecution, and it is unclear if the government would actually go ahead and prosecute the company.

“The Government is determining how it will proceed in this matter,” the Justice Department said in the court filing, according to The Associated Press.

Boeing will have until June 13 to respond to the government’s allegation. Upon doing so, the justice department said it would consider the company’s explanation “in determining whether to pursue prosecution.”

Boeing disputes the DOJ’s findings, claiming the company has “honored the terms of the agreement” and “look forward to the opportunity to respond to the Department on this issue.”

“As we do so, we will engage with the Department with the utmost transparency, as we have throughout the entire term of the agreement, including in response to their questions following the Alaska Airlines 1282 accident,” a spokesperson for Boeing told The Independent.

After a series of negotiations, the government agreed not to prosecute Boeing on a charge of defrauding the United States by deceiving regulators about the flight system involved on the two crashes. The settlement included a USD 243.6 million fine, a USD 500 million fund for victim compensation, and nearly USD 1.8 billion to those airlines whose Max jets were grounded for nearly two years.

Prosecutors said they will be meeting with families of passengers who died in both Max disasters on May 31.

Paul Cassell, a lawyer who represents families of passengers in the Ethiopia crash, said the Justice Department’s allegation that Boeing violated the settlement terms is “a positive first step, and for the families, a long time coming.”

“But we need to see further action from DOJ to hold Boeing accountable, and plan to use our meeting on May 31 to explain in more details what we believe would be a satisfactory remedy to Boeing’s ongoing criminal conduct,” Cassell added to The Associated Press.

The agreement was thrust back into the spotlight after a string of safety incidents involving Boeing planes in recent months. The most notable was a door plug blew out at 16,000 feet on an Alaska Airlines flight. That led to a federal investigation into the incident and Boeing.

Former workers and whistleblowers have accused the company of systematically degrading the quality of its manufacturing and the expertise of its workforce in pursuit of short-term profits for shareholders.

Last week, a second whistleblower within Boeing’s supply chain died after alleging the company had cut corners while building its 737 Max jetliner. Reports indicated the man had died of pneumonia caused by a flu infection.

In an email to employees last month, Scott Stocker, the head of Boeing’s 787 program, blamed the missed inspections on “misconduct” by workers and said that those responsible had received “swift and serious corrective action.”


Ethiopians have paid a very heavy price in this war

Some 26 soldiers and policemen are among the Ethiopians who have been killed in the current war between Israel and Hamas , as well as 3 civilians; Data shows the rate of casualties among Ethiopians is much higher than their numbers in general population, as is the case among the outstanding soldiers.

The Iron Swords War will be remembered as the War of Independence of the Ethiopians in Israel because this is the war in which the public was exposed even more to the great contribution of Ethiopians to Israel’s security.

The proportion of Ethiopians in Israeli society is 1.8 percent. Over 170,000 Ethiopians live in Israel. But among the fallen, the number of Ethiopians stands at 26 out of 716 among the members of the security forces; that is, more than 3.5 percent, twice their proportion in the general population.

An expression of the great contribution of Ethiopians to the IDF could be seen at the ceremony for outstanding soldiers at the President’s Residence on Independence Day. Out of the 120 outstanding soldiers, 10 are Ethiopians, or five times their proportion in the population.

Unofficial data from the army indicates that the number of Ethiopians in the commando units is many times more than their proportion in the general population.

“Ethiopians fight there like lions. They are considered excellent soldiers in these units,” said a source familiar with the matter. There are also a higher number of Ethiopians among the seriously wounded. “All in all, there are dozens of soldiers from the community who were wounded in the war,” the source said.

Minister of Immigration and Absorption OfirSofer said the reality of the data hit home just this week.

“The terrible period of the long war brings us together with the strengths that exist in our wonderful nation,” he told Ynet. “These things are especially true for the ex-Ethiopian community. Just this week on Memorial Day eve, I attended the funeral of the late Sergeant Yosef Dassa, his mother’s only son, who was a fearless soldier and fell in battle in the Gaza Strip. Family members and friends eulogized Yosef, but it was hard to miss the eulogy of the two cousins, also soldiers in the IDF’s best units, who are especially mature and full of Zionism, and who returned from the Gaza Strip for the funeral. And immediately after they returned to continue fighting. With this picture I entered the 76th Independence Day.”

The chairman of the Jewish Agency, Major General (res.) DoronAlmog, added that “the members of the Ethiopian community contributed and continue to contribute to the security of the country with a tremendous mobilization as soldiers in all field units.”

“Out of loyalty and endless love for the State of Israel, many of them immigrated to Israel, mobilized, fought and some were even killed to protect our miracle like no other – the State of Israel, our only home on earth. They, among the rest of our determined warriors, give us hope and pride. The Ethiopian community has grown up soldiers and officers in senior positions in the IDF and the country as a whole theirs.”


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