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Soldiers of patriotic Ginbot 7 to relocate to camp in Ethiopia
Andargachew Tsige

Soldiers of patriotic Ginbot 7 to relocate to camp in Ethiopia

Patriotic Ginbot 7 Movement for Unity and Democracy, in its first press briefing since its homecoming in September, stated that preparation is underway both by the government and the party to return some 550 of its soldiers to camps and rehabilitate them, Andargachew Tsige, general secretary of the party, disclosed on Wednesday, December 26, 2018.

 The party has been determined to commit its soldiers stationed in Eritrea to military camps in Ethiopia since its return. However, due to delay from the government’s side, it could not happen, so far. Nevertheless, it is going to be implemented shortly and some 550 soldiers of the party will be committed to camps, secretary general of the party told The Reporter.

“Even though we want all our soldiers to be relocated to camps from day one, the government did not prepare a camp and allocate the appropriate budget to do the rehabilitation works. However, now, the camp has been identified and the budget allocated by the government. Therefore, our soldiers will be relocated to the camps and will engage in the rehabilitation process,” Andargachew highlighted.

Regarding the delay, Andargachew blamed the government for its sluggish actions, and responses and said that, “relocating soldiers to the camps did not happen just because the government didn’t act swiftly. To do so, therefore, is up to the government not to us.” 

According to Andargachew, the soldiers who are going to join the camps are those who have lost their properties, homes and other assets due to their engagement in the struggles of the past and the soldiers will be rehabilitated before joining the community.

Regarding the upcoming election, he said that “it doesn’t matter whether the upcoming election will take place according to the plan or not; what matters most at this historical juncture is that the reinstatement of law and order, make sure different institutions are free, and independent to oversee the election and so on. If this occurs, it is easy to conduct the election without having such guarantees. We don’t have to conduct an election just to meet the schedule to conduct an election.”

On the subject of merger with other political parties, the secretary general stated that so many activities have been completed so far and leaders of the parties like EDP, Blue and former members of the Unity for Democracy and Justice (UDJ) have agreed to merge the parties and create a new one which focuses on the politics of citizenship. This new party is expected to be functional as of April, Andargachew revealed.