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Ethiopian Institution of the Ombudsman – Mereja

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The Ethiopian Institution of the Ombudsman has condemned the imposition against students forcing them to adhere to the hoisting of the Oromia regional state’s flag and singingof the state’s anthem in Addis Ababa.

The move,which is being done by the Addis Ababa City Administration, is unacceptable both legally and morally, said the institution on Tuesday in a statement.

Calling for ending the imposition, the institution said the city administration should be held accountable for instigating violence and property damage in the various schools in the metropolis.

“No body should take responsibility but the city administration, said the Institution.

Throughout the last ten days, several schools in various districts in Addis Ababa have experienced unrest, some outright violence, inconnection with opposition against Oromia regional state anthem and regional flag being displayed in school compounds.

“The Ethiopian law states that schools should be exempted from religious, political and cultural impositions,” said the institution adding the exercise by the city administration to hoist a regional state’s flag at schools in Addis Ababa did not have any legal and moral grounds.

Violence erupted On 01 December in Entoto Amba Secondary School, located inGulelle Sub-city, when a group of students opposing the school’s decision to hoist Oromia regional state flag and sing of the regional anthem in the school compound clashed with those who are in favor of the decision.

The following days saw similar incidents of confrontation and violence between groups and at times involving teachers, school management and administrative staff.

The Addis Ababa police have arrested more than 100 students and teachers in connection to the violence. Mereja.com confirmed that students as young as 14 years old have also been arrested by the police.



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