Mega Damming of the Life giving waters of Ethiopia. This process is menacing the existence of the inhabitants of the region by drying the sources and lakes. The main reason advertised for damming is for production of Electricity and exporting energy. This could be done by small human level dams.The underlying reason is to the irrigation for the great land grabbing for cash crop exportation for financial speculators. Moreover, such mega projects leads to undue water crisis.
Friday, July 27, 2018
As a Dam Rises in Ethiopia, Its Manager Is Found Dead- NYT
CAIRO — The manager of a $4 billion dam under construction on the Blue Nile River in Ethiopia was found shot dead on Thursday, drawing an anguished reaction from Ethiopia’s leaders and setting on edge one of Africa’s most contentious development projects.
The project manager, Semegnew Bekele, who was overseeing the construction of the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam, was found slumped behind the wheel of his Toyota Land Cruiser in Meskel Square in the capital, Addis Ababa, at 8:30 a.m. He had a gunshot wound to his head, the federal police commissioner, Zeinu Jamal, told reporters.
The police also found a pistol inside the car and were trying to identify its owner, Mr. Jamal said. The police commissioner did not say whether he suspected foul play, fueling speculation that the death was linked to Mr. Semegnew’s work.
When completed, the giant Renaissance dam is expected to generate 6,400 megawatts of hydroelectricity that will more than double Ethiopia’s current production and potentially allow the country to earn hundreds of millions of dollars in energy export revenues. But the project has met with stiff resistance from Egypt, where many fear it will cut into the country’s already strained supply of Nile water.
Mr. Semegnew, 57, a short, loquacious man with a salt-and-pepper beard, was the project’s engineer and unofficial ambassador. He explained the dam’s benefits to the Ethiopian taxpayers who funded it, and sought to assure nervous Egyptians that it would cause them no harm.
“This is our baby,” he told The New York Times in May during a tour of the dam in the Ethiopian highlands, five miles from the border with Sudan. “This is what we are saying. Not just me — all Ethiopians.”
His sudden death sent ripples of sorrow across Ethiopia on Thursday. Grief-stricken citizens scuffled with the police as they attempted to lay flowers near the bloodstained vehicle where Mr. Semegnew was found. Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed was “saddened & utterly shocked,” his chief of staff, Fitsum Arega, said in a Twitter post.