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Investigators say Simegnew Bekele of GERD committed suicide

Investigators say Simegnew Bekele of GERD committed suicide

The police investigation into the unexpected demise of the nation’s most renowned engineer, project manager of the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD), Simegnew Bekele, has revealed that the engineer has committed suicide.

In a press briefing held today September 7, 2018 at the headquarters of the Federal Police, the Federal Police Commissioner Zeinu Jemal and officials from the Federal Attorney General and the Addis Ababa Police Commission announced that the forensic evidence collected from the place of the incident, phone call records of the engineer with his secretary and the letter he left testified that he was not subject to any attack from another person but he committed suicide.

“The evidence we collected shows the engineer committed suicide. His letter shows desperation although he did not clearly point the reason to commit the suicide,” Zeinu told journalists.

Simegnew was found dead in his vehicle in Addis Ababa’s Meskel Square on the morning of July 26, 2018 where the engine of his vehicle has been running at the time of police arrival. On the day of the incident, Zeinu briefed the media saying Simegnew’s vehicle was seen at the crime scene at 8:30 am and he checked in his office in the morning at 7:30.

The Commissioner said on July 26 that there has been a pistol on his right-hand side and his left side of the neck has been shot.

The remains of the 53 years old chief engineer and a public face of the GERD, was laid to rest on Sunday, July 29, 2018.

Simegnew was in Addis Ababa to orient journalists on the current status of the GERD project which was rumored on social media to have lagged and will not be completed on schedule. He was also scheduled to take journalists for a visit to the project site.

The police said that he told his secretary to take care of his children and he advised his children to study hard.

Simegnew is survived by his wife and three children.