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Fertilizer debts pester farmers


March 19, 2014

Opinion gathered from the public and regional states by the Ethiopian Government Communication Office revealed that farmers in Oromia, Southern and Amhara regions of Ethiopia have been harassed for not paying back the arrears for the fertilisers they took from the government.

“Aged farmers have been detained and abused. They snatch our cattle. Armed government securities and militia also attack and beat the farmers” said the farmers.

The lives of five people was lost due to a scuffle between government security officers who came to snatch the oxen from a famer in Gojjam, Northern Ethiopian and the farmer’s family, who refused to surrender their oxen. The farmer, Berihun Fenta, his wife and son along with the two government security officers have died to the fight.

According to the information, last year, to appease the farmers to be vote and be part of the election, the government did not ask farmers to pay fertilizers debts. At least 13 youth from the Oromia region, 57 from the Amhara region and 31 farmers from the Southern Region have respectively fled abandoning their land and cattle.

If the situation continues like this, the government will get no votes from the farmers, said the report.  Although the ruling EPRDF has began a new scheme of getting farmers to pay taxes, it has decided to suspend it until upcoming election, next year.

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Fertilizer debts pester farmers

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